DIVINE EMPIRE drummer Duane Timlin has shot back at bassist/vocalist Jason Blachowicz (ex-MALEVOLENT CREATION) over the latter's claim that he has put together a new version of the band, featuring a new drummer and guitarist from Chicago and a second guitarist from Pennsylvania.
Timlin and guitarist J.P. Soars had previously issued a press release claiming that Blachowicz had been dismissed from the group due to "serious personal and legal issues." The duo also insisted that they had already found a replacement and were planning on hitting the road in support of their recently released CD, "Method of Execution", available now on Century Media Records. Blachowicz responded with a missive of his own, claiming that he was "the owner, heart and soul of DIVINE EMPIRE," and reiterating that it was the other members of the band who have been replaced "due to personal issues." He also stated that as a result of the lineup changes, DIVINE EMPIRE had been forced to cancel their previously announced participation in the VADER-headlined Blitzkrieg 3 European tour, set to kick off in early September.
The following is Timlin's response to Blachowicz's statement, as sent via e-mail to BLABBERMOUTH.NET:
"A week before recording 'Method…', Jason got picked up by the police after a show on a slew of charges.
"Before we went to Europe for the TESTAMENT tour, we found out Jason still had a $1,200 fine to pay off, so we were set back almost a week had to borrow $1,800 dollars from Century Media, which will never be paid back (this is our money) not to mention not paying our merch guy for our shirts and what not, being in debt with the lawyer and a host of other lies and acts. Therefore, we had a problem, and that problem was Jason, and he had to go. Why would two members stay together while the one other is looking for a whole new band? Also, as far as owning the [rights to the] band, guitarist/vocalist J.P. Soars started the band with Derrick Roddy and has since written 80 percent of the music, Since I've been in the band, Jason has written seven songs out of twenty-six. He has written lyrics, but when you're behind bars, there's not much else for him to do and if you notice, most are jail-related...
"Alright, so let's put an end to the sideshow. DIVINE EMPIRE is and will be J.P. Soars and Duane Timlin. Also, we have been talking to Chief Spires (ex-NILE). He's willing to cover Jason's touring duties. And the VADER [European] tour is on!
"We have the backing and blessing of Century Media and already took over the business end of things so from this point on anything posted by Jason Blachowicz is unofficial and should not be posted..."