Guitarist Jani Liimatainen of the Finnish melodic metallers SONATA ARCTICA has issued the following statement via the band's official web site (rough translation from Finnish):"Unfortunately, we have come to a situation in where I'm unable to play SONATA ARCTICA's scheduled gigs this spring. The reason for this is that I have to fulfill my civic duties. The band will, in any case, perform the agreed gigs with a substitute guitarist and I'm sure he will meet the high standards the fans expect from SONATA ARCTICA's gigs. I hope I'll be able to return to the band as soon as possible, because the tour break has already taken too long and I miss the sweaty nights on stage and the sweaty days in the tour bus! I want to wish a nice spring to all fans; hopefully we will meet soon!" As previously reported, SONATA ARCTICA has completed work on its new album, "Unia" (Finnish for "Dreams"), due on May 25 via Nuclear Blast Records. The CD was mixed at Finnvox studio in Helsinki and was mastered at the Cutting Room in Stockholm, Sweden. The final installment of SONATA ARCTICA keyboardist Henkka Klingenberg's studio report can be found at this location. The latest single from SONATA ARCTICA, "Replica" — containing a new version of the title cut, which originally appeared on the band's 1999 debut, "Ecliptica", plus the songs "Draw Me" (instrumental) and "Respect the Wilderness" — entered the Finnish single chart in November at position No. 1. The new version of "Replica" is included on SONATA ARCTICA's "best of" collection, entitled "The Collection 1999-2006", which entered the Finnish album chart at No. 16. In addition to material from the band's studio albums, the CD contains a new version of the song "My Land", which also originally appeared on "Ecliptica". For more information on the "Replica" single and the "The Collection 1999-2006" CD, go to this location.
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