STRATOVARIUS leader Timo Tolkki has slammed the group's former singer Timo Kotipelto for saying that Tolkki has "really gone over the top" in his handling of the band's affairs, calling the departed vocalist "a first-class actor putting out a great role."
In an official statement commenting on his split with STRATOVARIUS, Kotipelto mentioned none of the specific details that led to his departure from the group, claiming that he did "not [want to] join Tolkki's little blaming game" and adding that Tolkki has "said a lot of childish things and bullshit about me."
Writing in response to several postings on the band's official forum from fans who were siding with Kotipelto, Tolkki said, "[Timo Kotipelto] was the true dictator of STRATOVARIUS. He was always the one who wanted his way against the majority of the band.
"[addressing the fans on the message board] Blind worshipping is not good for you guys!
"The truth must be known, Kotipelto is not writing about the reasons of the split because he knows EXACTLY what he is doing, like always. He is not this guy you read from the statements or even if you have met him. He is a first class actor putting out a great role and you guys are falling for it.
"Reading his 'statement' one might think why he left STRATOVARIUS at all. Everything seems to be fine.
"He was pushing everyone in the band that I would take his mediocre songs to STRATOVARIUS albums. Even the songs that ended up there are heavily arranged by me.
"His first solo effort was so boring I fell asleep while listening to it. He sang great though, as always.
"He is still to me the greatest vocalist of all time!
"But even if he would apologize me, Jens, Jörg and Jari and would show his true face and what he REALLY thinks about his fans, I WILL NEVER EVER PLAY IN THE SAME BAND WITH TIMO KOLTIOPETO AGAIN!!!
"Put it this way, I will fucking kick his ass in PIORNO ROCK because he disrespects STRATOVARIUS fans by not even coming to rehearsals.
"This is what your 'good boy' is doing.
"He doesn't even write about the fact that he is not coming to rehearsals in his bullshit statement. He writes about NOTHING of importance. And you guys fall for it.
"Blind worshipping is here to stay I guess."
In a separate posting, Tolkki referred to Kotipelto's statement as "bullshit" and went on to say, "Typical Kotipelto talk. Man manages to write 10,000 words without mentioning one single word about the TRUE REASONS of the split.
"I have been pissed of about his behavior because he is lying and pretending to be the good boy, while he himself hit Jörg first and then tried it with me. On top of that he refuses to rehearse for the gigs now.
"Me, Jörg, Jens and Jari will rehearse without him in Germany.
"It is not the first time when he does against what the MAJORITY of the band has decided.
"One might ask what is a dictatorship at the end of the day.
"STRATOVARIUS has always been a democratic band. The majority decides.
"The majority of the band has chosen me to be the boss and the producer of the band.
"Kotipelto has decided against the decisions of the majority of the band numerous of times.
"These are the TRUE reasons for the split and none of this 'thank you for all these years' shit."