Worst nightmare: band loses “every piece of musical gear” they own in freak studio fire

Omni Rooms rehearsal and studio space in Bristol, UK
(Image credit: GoFund Me)

In a scenario that ranks among many guitarists’ greatest fears, UK math-rock band Last Hyena have shared the news that their studio and rehearsal space has burned down, along with all the gear inside.

The fire, described as a “freak accident”, hit Omni Rooms in Bristol, UK, earlier this month, and resulted in the destruction of all equipment inside, including studio gear and that of bands who used the space for rehearsals – fortunately, nobody was inside at the time of the blaze.

“Rory [Mapes] and Max [Mees] have lost every piece of musical gear between them, most of it acquired over years of tone hunting and all with its own sentimental values and memories,” Last Hyena shared in a Facebook post. “We were just on the verge of recording our next record for 2023 which of course has now been pushed back.”

Omni Rooms was founded in 2020 by Jodie Robinson, who fronts local alt-rock band IOTA and said of the damage, “I feel like I’ve lost a huge part of who I am right now.”

A GoFundMe page has been set up to raise money for the studio and any of the bands affected, including Last Hyena, IOTA and others. While the studio had insurance, it didn’t cover the bands’ equipment stored within.

“I just keep thinking I was here once before, I had nothing and I can do this again,” says Robinson. “But for now my main priority is to help these musicians get back on their feet.”

For more information on the fundraiser, visit GoFundMe.

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Michael Astley-Brown

Mike is Editor-in-Chief of GuitarWorld.com, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism from Cardiff University, and over a decade's experience writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as 20 years of recording and live experience in original and function bands. During his career, he has interviewed the likes of John Frusciante, Chris Cornell, Tom Morello, Matt Bellamy, Kirk Hammett, Jerry Cantrell, Joe Satriani, Tom DeLonge, Ed O'Brien, Polyphia, Tosin Abasi, Yvette Young and many more. In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.