Guitarist RALPH SANTOLLA Leaves ICED EARTH, Joins SEBASTIAN BACH

Guitarist Ralph Santolla has officially left ICED EARTH and joined SEBASTIAN BACH's solo band. "There are several reasons for this decision, and for the moment I will keep them to myself," Santolla writes in a statement sent to BLABBERMOUTH.NET. "The other guys [in ICED EARTH] know my reasons, and hopefully this won't turn into a public pissing match. On the other hand, if it does, at least execution by musketry has gone out of style. I made some great friends, played some great, albeit difficult (!) metal tunes, and learned a lot from the experience. Whatever anyone else says about [ICED EARTH mainman] Jon [Schaffer], he IS a phenomenal rhythm guitarist.

"On a different note, I am the new lead guitarist for Sebastian Bach. We start playing July 22nd, and I can't wait. We'll do a new album later this year, so look for that, and I hope to see some of the cool people I met on tour with [ICED EARTH] at some of these gigs. I am also in talks with Steve DiGiorgio [TESTAMENT, SADUS, ex-DEATH, CONTROL DENIED], Gene Hoglan [STRAPPING YOUNG LAD, DARK ANGEL, ex-DEATH], and Tom Englund from EVERGREY about making an epic, orchestral metal album called 'ex Cathedra'. More on this later."

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