The world of rock has lost one of its biggest names. VH1/Sirius XM host Eddie Trunk first reported Monday night that Motörhead bassist/singer/songwriter Ian Fraser “Lemmy” Kilmister had died at age 70, with the band confirming the news a few hours later. According to their statement, Kilmister died of cancer, and had only been diagnosed with it two days earlier:

“There is no easy way to say this,” Motörhead said. “Our mighty, noble friend Lemmy passed away today after a short battle with an extremely aggressive cancer.”

“He had learnt of the disease on December 26th, and was at home, sitting in front of his favorite video game from The Rainbow which had recently made its way down the street, with his family,” the band said. “We cannot begin to express our shock and sadness, there aren’t words.”

Kilmister formed Motörhead in 1975 and was its sole consistent member, and toured with them earlier this year. The band did abandon its Sept. 1 concert in Austin, Texas, with Kilmister walking off stage and saying “I can’t do it,” but blamed altitude sickness in a release then and said they would return to touring in February.

The news of Kilmister’s death comes just over a month after the death of Phil Taylor, who was Motörhead’s drummer from 1975–1984 and 1987–1992 and played on many of their biggest hits, including “Overkill,” “Ace Of Spades,” and “Iron Fist.”

Kilmister’s passing will leave a big mark on the music world, both for the hard-edged power and speed his music brought and for his legendary hard-partying lifestyle that made him a bigger-than-life figure. Tributes were already pouring in for him Monday night:

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously worked at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.