Opeth has parted ways with drummer Martin Axenrot over a conflict of interests. According to a statement from the band, Opeth has recruited drummer Sami Karppinen (Therion) for their upcoming tour and wishes Axenrot all the best.
“Due to conflict of interests, Martin Axenrot is no longer part of the Opeth collective. His replacement for the North American tour with Mastodon and Zeal & Ardor will be powerhouse drummer Sami Karppinen. His first show will take place today (November 16) at Harrah’s Cherokee center in Asheville, NC.
Said Mikael Åkerfeldt: “However sad it is to not have Axe in the band anymore, we’re not in a position to linger on anything that is going to hold us back. We need to soldier on. Needless to say, we’re incredibly thankful that Sami is helping us out, making this tour possible at all. On top of that, he’s quite outstanding, really!“
He continues: “All of us wish the best for Axe in all and any of his future endeavors. He has been a incredibly important part of the band for many years now, and we’re all heartbroken it didn’t work out in the end. But that’s life, I guess….“
Axenrot played in Opeth between 2006 and present day.
Below the official Twitter post from the band: