Nuclear Blast Records announced today via their Facebook page that Fleshgod Apocalypse has officially parted ways with singer and guitarist Tommaso Riccardi. This was due to "personal reasons", according to the band. Now, with the vocalist and guitarist gone, the band had to do some personnel reorganization. Francesco Paoli will be leaving the drum kit and taking over on vocals. David Folchitto will fill in on drums, and Fabio Bartoletti is taking over guitar duties. David and Fabio are announced as "guest musicians", so it is unknown if there will be another lineup change after the upcoming South American tour with Septicflesh.
Here is the official statement by the band:
There's no easy way to say this, so we'll go straight to the point: About a couple of months ago, our singer Tommaso left the band for personal reasons. Our separation wasn't painless, but everybody thought this was the best solution. Therefore we sat down and tried to figure out all possible scenarios for a band that suddenly loses its frontman. The will to go on and continue this journey was stronger than everything else.
Since the message of FLESHGOD APOCALYPSE goes beyond music itself, we couldn't let someone who wasn't there since the beginning be its spokesman. So the only way to go on was to take a look back at our roots: We decided that Francesco Paoli, our drummer, songwriter, founder and first frontman of the band, was the natural choice for this delicate and also challenging position. Our mastermind has finally taken back his originary role as lead vocalist and guitarist. From now on, besides our precious soprano singer Veronica Bordacchini, we'll have the honour to share the stage with the Italian metal legend David Folchitto (STORMLORD, PROPHILAX) on drums together with the phenomenal Fabio Bartoletti (DECEPTIONIST) on lead guitar.
FLESHGOD APOCALYPSE are more focused and determined than ever. Expect new epic live experiences and, most likely, the darkest and heaviest FLESHGOD APOCALYPSE album that we've ever written. We can't wait to start this new, exciting chapter of our career. Our friends in South America will be the first ones to witness the new course of the band, with Francesco as our frontman.
What doesn't kill you makes you stronger."
I always hate the "personal reasons" excuse, because the nosey asshole in me wants to know what the hell really happened.