Martin Eric Ain, Former Celtic Frost Bassist, Dead at 50

Martin Eric Ain—the bassist and co-founder of legendary metal band Celtic Frost—has died at the age of 50 after suffering a heart attack.

Ain—whose death was confirmed by his friend, Jan Graber, in a 20 Minuten story—was an on-and-off member of Celtic Frost, playing on many of the band's formative releases, such as 1984's Morbid Tales. He also played a major role in the band's 2001-2008 reunion, even singing lead vocals on "A Dying God Coming into Human Flesh" from the band's final, 2006 album, Monotheist.

Thomas Gabriel Fischer, Celtic Frost's frontman, wrote in a Facebook post that he was "deeply affected" by Ain's passing.

"Our relationship was very complex and definitely not free of conflicts, but Martin's life and mine were very closely intertwined, since we first met in 1982," he wrote.

Speaking to Guitar World last month about Celtic Frost's first release—Morbid Tales—Fischer said “We had spent years in a mildewed, wet, stinky, underground rehearsal room—an old bunker—dreaming of attaining a record deal, being fanatical metal fans, literally playing every single day, much more than any other Swiss band that we knew."

"And then we had attained a record deal, which was the fulfillment of our teenage dreams, and of course we wanted to keep that. We knew our first record with Hellhammer was flawed, and we wanted to show that we were not blind, and that we could actually progress as musicians."

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Jackson Maxwell

Jackson is an Associate Editor at He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.