Swedish metallers SOILWORK have confirmed the departure of their longtime drummer Dirk Verbeuren as he joins heavy metal legends MEGADETH. Verbeuren has been performing with MEGADETH for months — his first show with the band was at Rock On The Range festival in May, where he played to a crowd of 40,000 concertgoers.
SOILWORK vocalist Björn "Speed" Strid states: "In regards to the statement MEGADETH released confirming that Dirk will join them as their full-time drummer, I just want to take the time to wish Dirk good luck on this new venture and thank him for 12 great years together. Together we have created a beast of a band and have pushed the limits musically further than we ever could have imagined."
Strid continues to state that SOILWORK is charging forward, continually progressing their performance but not straying too far from their defining, signature sound. "In the recent years, SOILWORK have found new ways of expressing ourselves, and as much as of a cliché it is, I strongly believe that this is very much of a new era for us and that we still have so much left to say, whether it being with or without Dirk," he says. "This band has grown to be quite a metal collective and an institution that paves the way creatively and we hope that you, the fans, can feel the presence and the heart in our music still to this day. Believe me, it's there.
"I can assure that you will forever get 100% SOILWORK, as long as we release albums," he adds. "We aim to surprise ourselves and the listeners by constantly developing our sound and songwriting, something I believe we have succeeded in doing and yet remained true to our roots. That is something to be proud of and we are. We appreciate all our loyal fans and are excited that so many of you share our musical vision."
While Verbeuren was playing with MEGADETH, his seat in SOILWORK was occupied by Bastian Thusgaard of THE ARCANE ORDER.
Strid adds: "Meanwhile, I'm sure many of you have seen us at a festival in Europe this summer with our friend Bastian Thusgaard filling in on drums and I'm sure we can all agree on what a monster he is. Thank you, Bastian — you are absolutely killing it. Check out the remaining festival dates and come see us. We'll be there. Thank you."
Verbeuren had this to say about his exit from SOILWORK: "They say the biggest decisions in life are the hardest to make. This decision falls under that category.
"As a drummer, I've always enjoyed the evolution of my path.
"The past twelve years with SOILWORK have been incredible, a portion of my life I honor with pride.
"When I was approached to join MEGADETH — a childhood dream come true and something I never anticipated — I was beyond excited to even consider the realm of possibility. But truth be told, I couldn't have rightfully made this step without the support and blessing of my SOILWORK family. For that, I owe a huge thank you to Björn, Sven, David, Sylvain and Markus. You have allowed me to see what lies ahead, and you're my brothers in metal.
"Chris Adler, thank you for introducing me to MEGADETH and for your encouragement and support.
"Dave, David and Kiko, I'm thankful for your warm welcome and thrilled to perform and create badass music with you guys.
"To the fans, this is a new chapter for us; I hope we can enjoy this ride together!"
SOILWORK will release a special collection of rarities titled "Death Resonance" on August 19 via Nuclear Blast.
The band's tenth studio album, "The Ride Majestic", came out on August 28, 2015 via Nuclear Blast.