Jill Janus, lead vocalist of heavy metal band Huntress, commits suicide outside Portland, aged 43

The Associated Press

August 17, 2018 12:56:44 IST

Portland: Jill Janus, lead singer of the heavy metal band Huntress, has died at age 43, her family and band said on 16 August.

Jill Janus of Huntress performs at Ozzfest 2016 at San Manuel Amphitheater in California. AP/@Invision

Jill Janus of Huntress performs at Ozzfest 2016 at San Manuel Amphitheater in California. AP/@Invision

Janus had long struggled with mental illness, and killed herself outside Portland, Oregon, on Tuesday, her relatives and bandmates said in a statement released through publicist Alexandra Greenberg.

Janus fronted Huntress from the group's inception in Los Angeles in 2009, singing on three full-length albums and on tours with bands including Motorhead and Lamb of God.

Founding member Blake Meahl posted on his Facebook page on 16 August about the singer's untimely death.

"I hope you have found the peace that you couldn't find on this planet" Meahl said.

The band's sound was classic thrash-inflected metal, with Janus, one of the few female vocalists in the genre, screaming through songs like 'Spell Eater', 'Eight of Swords', and 'Sorrow' with her long blonde hair and tight, black leather stage suits.

She also sang in an all-female metal band known as The Starbreakers on the side.

Janus had been an advocate for mental health and encouraged fans who were suffering to seek help. Her struggles with bi-polar disorder nearly brought an end to the band in 2018, but they returned for another album and more touring.

The family statement urges those considering harming themselves to call the national suicide-prevention hotline .

Updated Date: Aug 17, 2018 12:56 PM