RIGA - The bassist of Prata Vetra, or BrainStorm, the most successful Latvian rock group whose fame transcended national boarders, died in a car accident on May 23.
It wasn't until May 25 that police officially confirmed that the body found at 1 p.m. along the Riga - Jelgava highway was that of Gundars Mausevics, 30, known by thousands of fans as "Mumins."
The musician's body was found lying about 50 meters from his Audi 80 in a peat bog alongside the highway. Police estimate that the crash took place between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m. on May 23. Although the cause of the accident is yet unknown, officials believe that Mausevics was speeding and failed to make the road's sharp turn.
The bassist has played with BrainStorm since the five Jelgava schoolmates started the band in 1989. A year later, the group gained nation-wide popularity with the hits "Jo tu nac," (Because you came), "Ziema" (Winter) and "Lidmasina" (Airplane).
With time, BrainStorm also achieved international success. In 2000 they took third place in the Eurovision international song contest. The band has performed in more than 10 countries worldwide and has opened for mega stars such as the Rolling Stones, Depeche Mode and The Cranberries.
Most of the BrainStorm albums in Latvia have received gold and platinum discs. "Among The Suns" (1999), "Online" (2002) and "A Day Before Tomorrow" (2003) gained popularity abroad, making the charts in several European countries.
About 10 minutes after the news of Mausevics' death broke, several hundred fans flooded Internet portals to express their regret and condolences to the beloved musician's family, friends and fellow band members, according to the Latvian News Agency LETA.