Massachusetts metallers UNEARTH were rejoined by their former drummer Derek Kerswill for an appearance at a benefit concert for their ex-bass player Chris "Rover" Rybicki, who tragically lost his life at the hands of an alleged drunk driver this past September. The show took place on February 19 at Saint Michaels Hall in Lynn, Massachusetts and featured a performance by another one of Rover's former bands, NO CHOICE, as well as sets by SCREAMS OF ERIDA and GASKET. All proceeds went directly to the Rybicki family.
Commented UNEARTH: "In an effort to keep the focus on recording our new album and to show everyone that we are still indeed friends with our former drummer Derek Kerswill and that our split was solely because of 'creative differences,' we decided that he is the best fit to play drums for us at Roverfest.
"Both the band and Derek agree that this was the best way to end our chapter together while also paying tribute to our fallen friend and former bassist Chris 'Rover' Rybicki. So if you [attended] the show at St. Michaels Hall in Lynn, you [got] a chance to see our last gig with Kerswill."
Rybicki passed away on September 20, 2010 from injuries sustained in an accident when the scooter he was riding on was hit by an allegedly drunk woman.
Rybicki was a member of UNEARTH from 1998 to 2002. He played on the band's first two EPs — "Above The Fall Of Man" (1999) and "Endless" (2002) — as well as the group's full-length debut, "The Stings Of Conscience" (2001).
UNEARTH previously stated about Rybicki, "Not only was Rover a talented musician, but he was also one of the funniest dudes you would ever know. His wit, dark humor and don't-give-a-fuck attitude made him a unique person that we all loved having in our lives. His memory will live on amongst his family and friends with the countless stories of Rover being Rover. He will be sorely and forever missed."