Word has hit Rocks Off that local strummer Dave Rask is currently a patient in the burn unit at Galveston's John Sealy Hospital, being treated for trauma on over 90% of his body due to a gasoline burn. Details surrounding Rask's condition and the circumstances of his injuries are scattered, and a representative of the hospital would only release limited information. Rocks Off spoke with Cassie Lynn Lee, a close friend of Rask's and wife of musician Taylor Lee, about Rask's condition while she was in route to Galveston to be with Rask's close friends and relatives. She confirmed the injuries were sustained near his Westheimer-area apartment. Close friend and sometime bandmate Ferrick Hallaron of the Hungry Villagers said that Rask's behavior has been erratic as of late, and he had become withdrawn around his friends.
The twentysomething Rask has been a veteran of the Houston music scene for the past five years. He has been involved in numerous projects in a wide array of genres including '60s-style jammersBarstool Forest
, Midnight Pilots and Primal Scream-inflected
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. The Seabrook native has always been one of the shining spots of Houston music, even though he was not very well-known. He routinely plays smaller venues such as Avant Garden, and last fall played a stray set upstairs at one of his favorite haunts, Boondocks. Rask's solo work is heavily indebted to Bob Dylan and Roky Erickson, especially the track "Westheimer Shake," currently streaming onhis MySpace artist profile
. The song perfectly embodies the feeling of that street on a Friday night, chock-full of smoke and booze. In light of recent events, his demo of "Fireflys" is a heartbreaker at the moment. Rask has been a close personal friend of Rocks Off since he first met him through Hallaron during a suburban IHOP session almost five years ago. We went with Rask and a few friends to see Sonic Youth in Austin two years ago and spent most of the show drunk as hell. We still don't remember much from that night, but we do have a nasty cigarette burn in our car to show for it.