Of Limbo Lives: Rock Band Resurrects After a Near Fatal Crash

Of Limbo (Credit: Nancy Raven Kirk)

Of Limbo is back on track, recording a new album and gearing up for the first performance since the members of the Long Beach-based rock band narrowly escaped death the morning of April 29 while on the road in Oklahoma. Just two days shy of igniting a national tour that was meant to transform their music careers, their plans were tarnished when the back tire of their touring van suddenly blew out, causing the vehicle to spin out of control and roll repeatedly, landing off the freeway.

“When the medics arrived, they walked down with body bags,” says drummer Juan Paz, who managed to break only his collarbone despite being ejected through the side window and left falling in and out of consciousness thirty feet from the scene. “Later, they told us we had a one in a million chance of surviving an accident like that, that we all should have been dead. But dancing with death has brought us together.”

The band’s mangled van (courtesy of Of Limbo)

While guitarist Luke Davies and bassist Herbie Brady walked away relatively and miraculously unscathed, lead singer Jake Davies broke his leg, which was severely tangled in the van’s crushed exterior. The medics had to use the Jaws of Life to get him out, and even incorrectly predicted he’d lose his leg. Fortunately, they were wrong.

Despite the apparent tragedy of the subsequently canceled tour, Jake Davies says the past few months have put things into perspective. The band members remain optimistic as they begin to record a new album and prepare for live shows again, the first of which will be The Resurrection Show at Fullerton’s Slide Bar this Saturday.

“We’ve had a lot of time to reflect and reprioritize, and we’ve spent a lot of time honing our craft,” Jake Davies says. “Besides a hell of a lot of physical therapy while healing, I’d spend my days sitting around just belting out vocals. We’re all playing better than we ever have.”

While the band’s first album, Nicotine, was more about the imperfect human condition and self-destructive behavior, their new album will be appropriately titled, Live Forever. One song, “Running Out of Time” is about people’s tendency to maximize life’s potential only upon being faced with its fragility. Although it would appear that the album’s theme was derived from the trauma of the accident, Davies says the lyrics were actually written beforehand.

“I don’t want to say it was prophetic because that would mean we caused the accident, but this album and the accident seem like they were meant to happen for whatever reason,” Davies says. “I believe the universe is intertwined in that way.”

Though the Of Limbo guys may have matured since their formative days, Davies and Paz both say they’ll never stop embracing and advocating for the party that comes with what they consider to be good rock ’n’ roll. Their songs have a diversity of colors and moods, and their shows are meant to release the audience of its inhibitions, allowing people to dance and get wild and interact.

“We want people to come to our shows and dance their asses off, not to stand in the back corner with their arms crossed in their expensive leather jacket,” Paz says. “Come talk to us, come party with us.”

The name Of Limbo actually derived from a late night out partying among the Davies brothers, where Jake asked an intoxicated Luke how he was feeling, to which Luke replied ‘I’m feeling a little bit left of limbo.’ Jake jotted the nonsensical phrase down, and the name Of Limbo, and the debauchery that came with it stuck.

From reckless nights out drinking to surviving a “one in a million” accident, Of Limbo has a newfound thriving determination to, in the words of Jake Davies, “make rock a fucking party again.”

Catch Of Limbo with Joyous Wolf, Bearwulf and Laced in Blue at Slidebar Oct. 20 at 8 p.m. Free. For full info click here. 

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