Opeth has just announced that former Paradise Lost, Bloodbath and Bodom After Midnight drummer, Waltteri Väyrynen, has joined the band full-time, and he will be making his live debut with the band in Tallin, Estonia on September 14th.
Väyrynen replaced replacement drummer Sami Karppinen, who stepped in to help the band on their US tour with Mastodon following the departure of Martin Axenrot, who left the band on the eve of the tour.
In a statement on Facebook, Mikael Åkerfeldt of Opeth said, “We just had our first rehearsal with Walt yesterday and it went incredibly well! We were all really nervous before, but Waltteri completely killed it! Pure delivery! We went through 16 songs (!) from start to finish and got no corrective feedback. It is quite remarkable! I was amazed, and the rest of the group too. He really has it all. From the requisite laid-back sensibility an Opeth drummer needs, through classic rock, progressive rock, metal grooves and beyond to downright mega-complex technical virtuosity. On top of that, he knows the songs extremely well (already) both from the recorded versions and from the sometimes edited live versions. We heard drum rolls and beats we hadn’t heard since recording the songs. Audiences are sure to be ready for plenty of air drumming moments tied to their favorite Opeth songs. Walt got it, to put it mildly.
“On top of everything, Waltteri is a great guy. Genuine. Super nice. Funny. And young! He was born the same year we recorded our first album, Orchid. Imagine that!
“We can’t wait to hit the road with him. Creating new music together. Playing all over the world. And providing a musical future with us. I’m very, very excited to have him join us, and I hope our audience will embrace him with open arms.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Sami for saving our butts when we needed them most. If it hadn’t been for his effort, friendship and care, we probably would have been.” on the ice” as we speak. We “I am additionally happy to keep Sami within the Opeth family. His contribution to Opeth is beyond words, and he will continue to help make our performances as good as possible. From the bottom of my heart, thank you, Sami!”
Opeth’s European tour delayed by pandemic to support 2019s In Cauda Venenum will begin in Tallinn on September 14. The band will perform at the Eventim Hammersmith Apollo in London on November 18th.