Swedish metallers SABATON have parted ways with their longtime guitarist Tommy Johansson.

Earlier today, SABATON released the following statement via social media: “After 7 amazing years in the band, our guitarist, Tommy, has decided to leave SABATON to pursue his own path. We wish him nothing but the best on his journey. We have been a close family and we will continue to support him in the adventures that await him in the future.

Tommy joined the band in 2016 but he has been a close friend of SABATON ever since our first meeting at the end of a concert in 2005. As a valued member of the band, he has contributed to countless immortal memories.

Tommy‘s departure from SABATON will not be effective immediately. He will stay on to ensure that all goes smoothly with the handover to our next guitarist.

“While a small part of his large heart will always remain within SABATON, we all know that he must follow his dreams.

“Even though we will not wake up daily in the tour bus next to him, we are sure that our paths will cross again many times in the future, both on and off the stage.

“Fly on your wings and strings brother!”

Tommy added in a separate statement: My dear friends! After 7 glorious years of Heavy Metal, I have decided to step down as the guitarist of SABATON.

“This has been the hardest decision I’ve ever made in my entire life.

“As many of you may know, I do a lot of things outside of SABATON. I play with another band, perform with various artists, and have a career as a singer that I’ve put aside for years to focus on SABATON. After doing this for seven years, I feel it’s time to start following my heart. This means I will no longer tour with my brothers in SABATON and will not meet all you lovely SABATON supporters on the upcoming tours with the band.

“I will never quit playing music. I’ll still be touring with MAJESTICA and other projects, but not on the same level as SABATON of course. I am sure I will meet you lovely fans on the road again in the future.

“My brothers in SABATON and the best crew in the world will forever be my second family and I will miss spending time with all these wonderful people. We had so much fun together every day. I’ve come to learn so much about life, about music and about touring that I wouldn’t have learned anywhere else.

“A massive thank you to all you lovely SABATON fans for accepting me as the new guitarist in 2016. I am certain you will accept the person who takes over after me.

“All the best to you all and I’ll see you again soon!”

Tommy Johansson is a well-known name, given his role as the longtime guitar player in SABATON. But before he joined the Swedish war machine, he had his own band REINXEED. His touring activities with SABATON slowed down the creative process for REINXEED but the group returned in 2019 — seemingly out of nowhere — with a new 10-track album titled “Above The Sky” and a brand new name, MAJESTICA. The album saw Tommy taking on vocal duties, something he last showcased as TWILIGHT FORCE‘s stand-in singer throughout autumn of 2017.

SABATON will enter the studio later this month to begin recording its eleventh album. The follow-up to 2022’s “The War To End All Wars” is tentatively due later in 2024 via Nuclear Blast Records.

SABATON recently released the animated movie “The War To End All Wars”, which tells the stories from the “The War To End All Wars” album. It begins with “Sarajevo”, a song about the assassination of Austrian archduke Franz Ferdinand, which sparked World War I. It ends with “Versailles”, about the 1918 Treaty Of Versailles that ended the war. SABATON also has the Sabaton History channel on YouTube, which includes historical looks at World War II, Swedish military history and even the 1995 massacre at Srebrenica, among others.

In September 2022, SABATON announced a new EP trilogy titled “Echoes Of The Great War”. The trilogy features new songs specifically about World War I, coupled with topically related catalog music.

The last EP in the “Echoes Of The Great War” EP trilogy, “Stories From The Western Front”, was made available in April 2023 on all platforms. It features a never-heard-before cover of MOTÖRHEAD‘s well-known track “1916”.

SABATON climbed the international charts with its tenth studio album, “The War To End All Wars”, securing No. 1 positions in Germany, Austria, Sweden, Poland, Hungary and Finland. Having achieved the top position for the second time in Germany, Sweden and Finland, the album peaked at No. 1 in Poland, Hungary and Austria for the first time in the band’s career. This and additional outstanding results in other territories have made “The War To End All Wars” SABATON‘s most successful album so far.

Photo credit: Tim Tronckoe (courtesy of Nuclear Blast)

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT ABOUT TOMMY’S FUTURE WITH SABATON ⚠️
After 7 amazing years in the band, our guitarist, Tommy, has…

Posted by Sabaton on Saturday, January 20, 2024





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