Living Tribute to Tom Croxton of Impaler fame, Thor, Hex Vortices and more!

The Hessian:
For years, I have interviewed many people in national bands. There has been a very diverse mix. Some of them would give you the shirt off their back. Others would wonder why you would consider bothering them since you are nowhere near worthy enough to do so. Then there’s this man. He has been on the national circuit for a couple decades now, touring worldwide with Impaler and the Canadian metal legend, Thor. He also has an outstanding thrash metal band called Hex Vortices. His name is Tom Croxton . An exceptional drummer and truly a remarkable human being. I’ve had so many people who know I’m friends with him that he’s one of the kindest people they’ve met. If you talk about him and his music, he will quickly take the focus off himself and tell you about his band brothers. How much he loves making music with them, how proud he is of them and how he loves them like family. Talking with his best friend and so many of his closest friends, I’ve really discovered that it’s not just me who thinks so highly of him. Here are their thoughts towards this Metal legend, remarkable drummer and an amazing person, Mr Tom Croxton. Starting with his closest friends and bandmates, and it’s only right to start this with Tom’s best friend, Matt Hamilton:

I met Tom when he was in Eldergaad playing drums in a burlap sack, basically, and was unaware of all the great things he’d accomplished with Impaler until we became friends and the stories came out. Tom is always a humble brother of metal doing whatever he can to raise his fellow brothers up. He wants nothing but the best for those he calls brothers. This man is shy to take praise, as he holds himself to such a high standard, but he gives it so freely. Him and I are much alike when it comes to that. He’s a damn beast on the drums. The things he can do to enhance a song are incredible. I’ve never been in a band with someone on the same wavelength as me like Tom. He immediately knows what to do in anything I write and we make a damn good team. I couldn’t imagine a better band mate for Hex Vortices and Thor. Two bands I probably wouldn’t be in if he hadn’t referred me. He’s drumming on my solo music now and we have a side project called Gallowglass Scourge we’ll be unleashing in 2021. No one supports my music and guitar playing like he does. It’s a real blessing to have someone in your corner like that. I can’t thank him enough. He’s also become a very dear friend for me as he’s helped me through a great deal in the past 6 or so years we’ve really gotten to know each other. I don’t know what I’d do without him. He’s become my big brother. Someone I really look up to.
Love ya, Buddy!

Matt Hamilton of Hex Vortices, Thor, and Gallowglass Scourge

I’ve been fortunate to be friends of Toms for a long time now, he’s got the biggest heart I’ve ever met, and is so genuine, I’ve never seen him be anything other! His talents are above and beyond our peers, and I couldn’t be more grateful to have a powerhouse of a drummer behind the riffs we throw at him! Tom Croxton, I love ya man! To hell and back, let’s thrash, brother!

Andrew Oltmanns of
Hex Vortices
Tom – you are the most caring and considerate person I know. You joke a lot about your maxed out friends list, really that just speaks to how quickly people warm up and feel comfortable in your presence! You’re always available for a chat, full of encouragement and advice, whatever time of day or night. I’ve only known you on a personal level since this past spring and have no reservation in calling you a brother! It’s a pleasure and honor to share in this musical journey with you!

With Love,
Alan Snow of Hex Vortices

Words simply can not describe the respect, admiration and absolute love I have for Mr. Tom Croxton. For many, many years, I have been very fortunate to not only have been in one band with Tom, but many bands spanning genres across the board. We have recorded multiple albums, toured everywhere from Portland, Maine to Portland, Oregon and throughout Europe together. To say he is an exquisitely talented drummer is an extremely gross understatement. He pounds those skins with power, finesse and skill that can and do rival any of the greats; Which he is most certainly amongst……and for those who have ever had the honor to get to know him, learn instantly he has a pure heart of gold to match. His charm and charisma shine bright setting an example of kindness for us all. He never hesitates to help anyone in need and is always there when you need him. He officiated me and my wife’s wedding; which was an incredible thing he did. Through it all, we have become more than just good friends, we have become brothers! He is truly an incredible person and I am eternally grateful he is in my life! Much love brother!!

Kyle Skogquist of Impaler

Tom Croxton is one of those people that really do make your life better by being in it.
Tom is THE BEST Drummer I’ve ever had the privilege to play with, not only with THOR, but Dawn Of Valor and my own solo stuff. He’s a great friend as well.
The road stories we’ve had on tour is the stuff of legends and some of the best times of my life.
Tom was also there for not only the proposal to my wife but he also officiated our wedding and for that I will be eternally grateful.

Cheers to you my friend.
John Leibel of Thor

Tom Croxton is by far the best drummer I’ve been fortunate to play with. But beyond that, he is also one of the nicest guys I know! I have been so fortunate to tour the world with him. He’s such a fun person to talk to and always treats everyone with so much respect. We have stories that the two of us will laugh about for the rest of our lives, most of them involving something foolish I did! Aliens on a cruise ship? Tick, tick? Canadian Bacon? Yeah, he and I get the inside jokes.
We have shared stages and hotels, celebrated birthdays, toasted beers, and crossed forks, all of these across the land. You can’t ask for a much better friend than Tom Croxton! Now get this guy some mashed potatoes, a Crowmoor cider, and crank up Priest and Rush!

Ted Jedlicki of Thor

Back in 2005 I moved to the twin cities on a whim. The first band I saw live was Impaler I had heard of them but had never seen them. I immediately noticed the presence behind the drum kit, our Tom Croxton. Having always been envious of drumming(a skill i could never get right) i was floored with the power,groove and style he was putting forth. I said “Now that’s a drummer id love to jam with!”

Our paths crossed here and there in the next years as I was playing around the twin cities as well. We played a couple shows together and our exchanges were always friendly but never much more but I always admired from afar.

Fast forward to 2016. I got the opportunity to play with the legendary Thor at First Avenue for the Zombie pub crawl. Impaler opened. I hadn’t seen Tom in about 5 years and he immediately recognized me and said Hi and that he was happy I was out playing again. I was floored, a human who I had immense respect and admiration said such nice things to me

Even luckier, after that gig i was beyond excited to find out that I was going to be playing with Tom in Thor as he was now Thor’s stick man!

The next 3 years were filled with some of the funnest and most memorable times of my life. I got to not only tour the US with Thor but a life long dream was fulfilled when I got to play overseas. Tom and I got to know each other very well over those years and I came to learn what a wonderful, genuine, talented, smart,funny, the list goes on and on person he is. We got to know each others lives and struggles. It made my heart very happy to realize that Tom was not only a fellow musician he was also my friend.

When I married my wife there was only one person I was going to have marry us and that was Tom as he had forged a friendship with her and had become “family.”

The world needs people like Tom. Im only a better person because him and I have connected. Id take a bullet for that man and not even think twice about it. We love you and you will always have a special place in the heart of the McNallies. Cheers Tom Terrific!

Matt McNallie of Thor

Tom is a big Teddy Bear and he would give you the shirt off his back. His passion for music is refreshing and I love the dude tremendously.

Dan Nelson ex- Hex Vortices

Tom was Impaler’s bludgeoner for a good many years! He’s a hard hitting fellow!!
I can tell you this first hand because I stood in front of his kit and had my hair blown around many a time.
He came into the band with a real trial by fire by joining us a week before New Jersey March Metal Meltdown 1999.
It was the sister festival to Milwaukee Metal Fest. So it was a high profile event…meaning we wanted to KILL it.
Thomas came through with flying colors and was a hero for us.
That was the beginning of many mad road trips across the US and Europe too.
He’s one of the friendliest people you’d ever meet and he loves to talk Metal with friends and fans alike.
He’s a part of the Impaler family and Hall Of Fame(if such a place exists) We always wish him the best in all his endeavors. Rock on and on Tommy!

Bill Lindsey of Impaler

If you know Tom and would like to add to this, please do!

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