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Stratovarius logo

Formed: 1984
From: Helsinki, Finland
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Stratovarius News

Below is our complete Stratovarius news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.

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Hammerfall Announces Festival Appearance

Swedish heavy metallers Hammerfall have announced that they will be participating in the forthcoming edition of the 70000 Tons Of Metal cruise ship festival. The event, which will be an early 2012 affair, will set sail from Miami, Florida to Cayman Islands on January 23rd, 2012 and return four days later. A total of 40 acts are planned to perform on the cruise with new band reveals taking place monthly.

The currently announced lineup is as follows:


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Arrayan Path Added To Ayia Napa Festival Roster

Arrayan Path (formerly known as Arryan Path) has issued the following update about appearing at the upcoming Ayia Napa Festival:

"Arrayan Path will be appearing in the Ayia Napa youth festival at the end of August together with bands like Stratovarius, Sabaton, Rotting Christ, as well as with some great bands from Cyprus like Blynd, R.U.S.T., Winter's Verge, and Lethal Saint, etc... A perfect combination of metal and holidays! Be there!"

Additional details on the festival are available by heading over to this location.

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First Bands Announced For 70000 Tons Of Metal 2012

The first batch of bands have been revealed for the forthcoming 2012 edition of the 70,000 Tons of Metal cruise ship festival. Next year's 70000 Tons Of Metal cruise will set sail from Miami, Florida to Cayman Islands on January 23, 2012 and return four days later on the 27th. The bands which are confirmed to appear include:


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Stratovarius Releases "Elysium" E-Card

Finnish melodic metal act Stratovarius has release an e-card for "Elysium," the thirteenth full-length studio album from the European metal veterans. The e-card can be accessed at this location. The CD will be released in Europe on January 14, 2011 through earMUSIC/Edel and in North America on January 18 through Armoury Records.

"Elysium" is set for release as a regular CD, a deluxe digipak edition with bonus track, a "collector's edition" (featuring two exclusive bonus tracks on a seven-inch single) and on vinyl.

Here is the "Elysium" trackisting:
1. Darkest Hours
2. Under Flaming Skies
3. Infernal Maze
4. Fairness Justified
5. The Game Never Ends
6. Lifetime In A Moment
7. Move The Mountain
8. Event Horizon
9. Elysium

You can check out the "Elysium" E-Card at this location.

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Stratovarius Cancels Shows Due To Illness

Stratovarius recently announced that drummer Jorg Michael underwent surgery due to having thyroid cancer. The band has now issued the following announcement about canceling French dates due to member Timo Kotipelto becoming ill:

"Well, the good news is that we're back on the road with Helloween. And Jörg Michael is back in his drum chair after his brush with death. The bad news is that Timo Kotipelto caught some sort of bacterial infection. We suspect it was something from the backstage food in December, but we don't know. Two of the other people on the tour had the same thing: a very bad dysentery-like stomach infection with vomiting and diarrhea, dehydration, also eventually had to go to hospital, etc.

"Timo's infection is stubborn and in addition to ruining his Christmas break, it has dried out his vocal cords. In his own words, he can't sing a note at the moment. We are currently in France and so far we had to cancel playing in Paris and Lyon. We are of course very sorry about this, and nobody is more heartbroken or frustrated than Timo himself. Apart from heeding the advice from doctors we are in touch with, the only thing we can do at the moment is to hope Timo gets better. We will ride the 1000 km to Bilbao tonight and hopefully we will all get some sleep on the nice smooth French motorways. Here is a short video about the Paris cancellation and some words from Jörg."

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Stratovarius Streaming New Song Online

Stratovarius is set to release the new album "Elysium" on January 14th through Armoury Records. The band is now streaming the new song "Under Flaming Skies” online, which can be found below.

Under Flaming Skies by UMGD

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Stratovarius Drummer Issues Health Update

Stratovarius recently announced that drummer Jörg Michael was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. Jörg has now issued the following update":

"Dear All, I hope this mail finds everybody well. The first leg of the European tour with Helloween is over -- time to have a few words with you. First, let's not forget the brilliant emergency rescue action and playing of Alex [Landenburg]. Thanks again for all what you did for the fans, the band and also for me. Surely I hate the idea of somebody sitting on 'my chair' but this special action needed some special treatment and I am proud and happy that it was you, Alex. Thanks again.

"I was overwhelmed by all the wishes, tons of emails and text messages I received from all over the world wishing me a speedy recovery. Thank you so much for supporting me. It made me feel very strong fighting these bastards inside of me.

"I have some good news to tell you and believe me - I really enjoy to tell the world: The surgery was done over six weeks ago and the first therapy is done as well. All looks good so far and as [keyboardist] Jens [Johansson] told me before: 'Do not worry, Jörg. What should survive in your body after all that you did to him!' Finally, he was right. There are only small bits and bobs left - I will fight those with another therapy session in about four months time. I think I've been very lucky that it was discovered by one of my friends in a very early state. Very good that my friend decided to become a doctor; he was very lousy when he tried playing the guitar. More...

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Stratovarius Reveals Further Details For New Album

Finnish metal act Stratovarius has revealed the tracklisting for the deluxe edition of its forthcoming studio album. The new record, titled "Elysium," will be the thirteenth studio effort from the band and will see release on January 14, 2011 through Armoury Records.

Here is the "Elysium" deluxe-edition tracklisting:
-Disc One-
1. Darkest Hours
2. Under Flaming Skies
3. Infernal Maze
4. Fairness Justified
5. The Game Never Ends
6. Lifetime In A Moment
7. Move The Mountain
8. Event Horizon
9. Elysium

-Disc Two-
Disc 2:

01. Darkest Hours (Demo)
02. Under Flaming Skies (Demo)
03. Infernal Maze (Demo)
04. Fairness Justified (Demo)
05. The Game Never Ends (Demo)
06. Lifetime In A Moment (Demo)
07. Move The Mountain (Demo)
08. Event Horizon (Demo)
09. Elysium (Demo)

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Timo Tolkki Joins Metal Super-Group Symfonia

Symfonia, the new melodic metal project featuring former members of Helloween, Stratovarius, Angra and Sonata Arctica, has announced that it will enter Studiomega in Varberg, Sweden on November 25 to begin recording 12 songs for its debut album, which is scheduled for a March 25, 2011 release. Symfonia has signed a four-album deal with the biggest Japanese metal and rock label Marquee Avalon for the territory of the entire Asian region, including China. Negotiations for the other territories are still in progress.

Timo Tolkki - Guitar
André Matos - Vocals
Jari Kainulainen - Bass
Mikko Härkin - Keyboards
Uli Kusch - Drums

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Headline News

Stratovarius Drummer Diagnosed With Cancer

Stratovarius keyboardist Jens Johansson has posted the following statement online:

"Dear STRATOVARIUS fans, I am afraid we have some quite terrible news. News of the worst imaginable kind. It's about our friend and drummer Jörg Michael.

"Jörg has cancer.

"He recently discovered a lump on his neck, went to the doctor, they decided to operate, and found what they call 'a malignant thyroid neoplasm.' They took out his whole thyroid just to have the best chance to get everything out. He will also have to undergo a regimen of radiotherapy.

"He is a fighter. We have all talked to him and it's clear that this guy is not down for the count. He and his team of German doctors are pissed off and ready to kick ass, and I would not want to be a little cancer cell on these guys' shit list.. believe me.

"Jörg and his family (and us guys in the band) found this out only last week, after the operation. Naturally we are all going between a lot of emotions, sadness, worry, shock, confusion, even anger.

"As for STRATOVARIUS, as you perhaps know, there is a long tour coming up with HELLOWEEN, and with the surgery and therapy that will now follow there is no way Jörg can do the first part of the tour. For me personally, I at first felt quite hopeless about the tour, because I was so upset about all this news. But Jörg himself has been extremely clear that he does not want the band to cancel a single show because of this. In the end, this is what made at least me feel better about going back hitting the road next week.

"So, we have debated what to do for many days now. Jörg first suggested my brother Anders to do this November-December 2010 leg, but it turns out Anders will, unfortunately, be busy recording some record or other with that little indie cellar band of his called HAMMERFALL. :o)

"After a lot of searching, we found a guy that both can do it and didn't have other commitments: Alex Landenburg. He plays well, Jörg says he is a great guy (very important!) and he even started learning the set already before we even had decided what to do, which to me shows a lot of dedication. You can Google Alex's name if you are curious.

"So it turns out that STRATOVARIUS will do the first leg of the HELLOWEEN '7 Sinners' tour, just as planned, only not with Jörg behind the kit, but with Jörg very much as a motivator to us being there. Not one single date will be cancelled or changed.

"Jörg wants to be back on the road with us again as soon as possible depending on the thearapy, but we are not making any promises; that one is up to powers even higher than Jörg Michael and his doctors.

"We will try to keep you somewhat updated.

"Anyway, the most important thing is that they think they got all the bad stuff out and that the end result is that we just fix that sentence I wrote above. We will then say: Jörg had cancer. But he beat it."

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Stratovarius Reveals New Album Tracklisting

Finnish metal act Stratovarius has revealed the tracklisting for its forthcoming studio album. The new record, titled "Elysium," will be the thirteenth studio effort from the band and will see release on January 14, 2011 through Armoury Records.

Here is the "Elysium" tracklisting:
1. Darkest Hours
2. Under Flaming Skies
3. Infernal Maze
4. Fairness Justified
5. The Game Never Ends
6. Lifetime In A Moment
7. Move The Mountain
8. Event Horizon
9. Elysium

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Helloween Announces European Tour Dates

German power metal act Helloween have announced dates for the band's upcoming European tour. The tour has been named "The 7 Sinners World Tour 2010/11 - European Part I" and features support from Finnish metal act Stratovarius. The tour kicks off on November 26th, 2010 in Wien, Austria and ends on December 19th in Prague, Czech Republic.

"The 7 Sinners World Tour 2010/11 - European Part I" tour dates:
Nov. 26 - Wien, Austria - Szene
Nov. 27 - Zlin, Czech Republic - Winter Masters of Rock
Nov. 28 - Budapest, Hungary - Petöfi Hall
Dec. 01 - Langen, Germany - Neue Stadthalle
Dec. 02 - Antwerp, Belgium - Hof Ter Lo
Dec. 04 - Prestatyn, UK - Hardrock Hell Festival
Dec. 05 - London, UK - The HMV Forum
Dec. 06 - Eindhoven, Netherlands - Effenaar
Dec. 08 - Lund, Sweden - Mejeriet
Dec. 09 - Oslo, Norway - Rockefeller
Dec. 10 - Gothenburg, Sweden - Lisebergshallen
Dec. 11 - Stockholm, Sweden - Arenan
Dec. 13 - Tallinn, Estonia - Rock Cafe
Dec. 14 - Tampere, Finland - Pakkahuone
Dec. 15 - Helsinki, Finland - House Of Culture
Dec. 17 - Warsaw, Poland - Stodola
Dec. 18 - Cracow, Poland - Studio
Dec. 19 - Prague, Czech Republic - Mala Sportovni Hala

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Exodus Confirmed for 70000 Tons of Metal

Thrash Metal band Exodus, among several other bands, have just been added to one of the most epic cruises of all time: the 70000 Tons of Metal cruise (Jan 24-28th of 2011). So far, eighteen bands out of the forty have been confirmed on the official site. The bands that have been confirmed are as followed:

Amon Amarth
Death Angel
Sonata Arctica
Uli Jon Roth

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Jens Johansson To Perform On Amberian Dawn Album

Amberian Dawn has checked in with the following update about Stratovarius keyboardist Jens Johansson performing on their next album:

"We are proud to announce that Mr. Jens Johansson, keyboard player of Stratovarius is going to appear on our next album. Before joining Stratovarius Jens has contributed his talent for bands like DIO and Yngwie J. Malmsteen.

"On this new AD album Jens is playing two keyboard battles with Tuomas Seppälä of AD. There's going to be electricity on the air when these two gentlemen meets each other on the battlefield of keyboards!"

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Download a Free Eagle/Armoury Records Compilation

While we're announcing free label samplers on Amazon.com, Eagle/Armoury Records has one up there as well, apparently from 2009. Here's the tracklisting of their free metal and hard rock compilation, which looks to contain a lot more vintage material than the other samplers, including Dio, Rainbow, Deep Purple and more:

1. Black Label Society "Suicide Messiah" (5:47)
2. Deep Purple "Rapture Of The Deep" (5:55)
3. Stratovarius "Deep Unknown" (4:26)
4. Alice Cooper "Detroit City" (3:57)
5. Dio "Holy Diver" (4:46)
6. Napalm Death "Breed To Breathe" [Explicit] (2:59)
7. Twisted Sister "Stay Hungry" (3:13)
8. Poison "Look What The Cat Dragged In" [Explicit] (3:15)
9. Rainbow "Kill The King" (4:39)
10. Black Label Society "Doomsday Jesus" (3:30)

You can download the free compilation here.

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Mystic Prophecy Posts Tour Journal Online

German metal band Mystic Prophecy has posted new tour journals from their tour with Stratovarius and Tracedawn at this location. An excerpt from the most recent entry from their January 20th show in Switzerland at the Z7 is as follows:

"Now it's time for us to go on stage, intro, 'Across the Gates...,' 'Masters of Sin' ... and then I usually talk to the audience. In which language? English or German? Never mind! German is okay. 'Hello Switzerland!' ... I barely hear anything. What the hell... 'Hello Switzerlaaaaand!!!' ... there is a murmuring among the crowd. Just like what happened to Tracedawn, only a few fans making some noise. Okay, we don't give up so soon. Pedal to the metal! Slowly the Swiss are warming up and look, after five songs we made it. They're cheering and clapping."

"During 'To the Devil I pray' Matt tries to tell me something and he points upwards. When I look this direction I see that there's an open window, three Tracedawn guys are standing there, making faces. And in the middle of them, there's their bassist presenting his bare manhood... hahaha. The guys are priceless and we're cracking up with laughter onstage."

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Dream Evil Launch Trailer for New Album

Swedish power/heavy metal band Dream Evil has launched a new trailer as a promotion for their latest release, In The Night. They also announced that In The Night has reached #53 on the Swedish sales charts. It was not specified exactly which sales chart they achieved that rank in.

“ ‘In The Night’ is available as CD, Digital Download and also as Limited Edition Mediabook CD with alternate cover artwork, extended booklet, two bonus tracks (‘Good Nightmare’ and ‘The Return’) as well as an exclusive patch!

“Dream Evil are currently on tour promoting ‘In The Night’ on shows with Stratovarius and Tracedawn... Dream Evil’s drummer, Pat Power, quickly checked in as follows:

"Finally the roads are seeing Dream Evil again! The tour has been amazing so far! The crowd is wild and the metal anthems run like thunder, crushing all non-believers! People in the cities salute our arrival with mighty roars. Hail all the fans who join our crusade! Hope to see you out there too! Until then, metal forever!

“ ‘In The Night’ was once again produced at Sweden’s Studio Fredman (Dimmu Borgir, In Flames, HammerFall, etc.), which is owned by Dream Evil axeman Fredrik Nordström, and the stunning artwork was created by Gustavo Sazes / www.abstrata.net (Arch Enemy, Firewind, Krisiun etc.).”
The band has added the songs ‘Band Your Head’ and ‘Immortal’ on their MySpace page."

Here are all the exact upcoming Dream Evil dates:

Dream Evil + Stratovarius & Tracedawn:
SA 06.02.2010 Lund (Sweden) – Mejeriet
SU 07.02.2010 Göteborg (Sweden) – Brew House
MO 08.02.2010 Oslo (Norway) – Rockefeller
TU 09.02.2010 Stockholm (Sweden) – Klubben

Dream Evil - Festivals 2010:
SA 14.08.2010 Catton Hall Derby (UK) – Bloodstock Open Air

SA 28.08.2010: Rijssen (NL) – Elsrock Festival

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Mystic Prophecy Issues Stratovarius Tour Update

German metal band MYSTIC PROPHECY mainman R.D. Liapakis has issued an update from their tour with STRATOVARIUS from Paris. The tour update is as follows:

“As it turns out the chemistry between STRATOVARIUS and MYSTIC PROPHECY is great. Every night is a great party with lots of fans coming into the shows. More the 1000 people came in to our show in Paris giving us the most energizing feedback any artist can hope for. It definitely is a great tour so far and we can’t wait for the rest of the dates. So see you soon in a town near you. Until then stay heavy!”

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Stratovarius Announces French Signing Sessions

Stratovarius has announced a couple of signing sessions in France, in Paris and Tolouse. The details are as follows:

Paris, January 12 at Gibert Odeon @ 17:30
Tolouse, January 13, FNAC @ 17:30.

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Stratovarius To Work On New Album in 2010

Stratovarius, who recently confirmed their appearance at Wacken 2010, will continue their European tour starting in January. The band also plans to start work on a new album in 2010. Here is a news update from the band:

"We're still in the middle of the Polaris world tour, but we do have a bit of news.

"The European summer festivals earlier this year were nice and relaxing as always, and then we embarked on a long three-month leg which covered the Far East, North and South America, and Finland. One highlight was Beijing, a place none of us in the band had played or visited before.

"Some of Lauri's video blogs from the past year are at http://www.stratovarius.com/tour.

"After a break for the holidays, the caravan will roll on in 2010, and we will do a long tour of Europe in January and February (see dates below). You can always check an up-to-date list of any upcoming dates at this address: http://www.stratovarius.com/tour.

"We have some more good news: we just confirmed to play Wacken in August 2010, which is always great fun. It's the biggest metal festival in the world, and has a great crowd, but also since there are so many bands there, you can always reconnect with many old friends backstage and in the VIP bar. This gig will mark the end of the "Polaris" would tour which spanned four continents with close to a hundred gigs. Wacken's website is at http://www.wacken.com/.

"We have finally made available the remaining stock some of the band's older merch. It's available for sale now at the 'treasure chest' on Stratovarius' official webshop at Fanzone. Some of these classic items are pretty unlikely that we will reprint, ever. The information about the old "treasure chest' merch you can find here (pdf). The main webshop with all the stock you can find at this address: http://www.fanzone.fi/stratovarius/.

"We have also confirmed an appearance on the '70,000 tons of metal' Caribbean cruise in late January, 2011. You can find details about this very nice cruise here: http://www.70000tons.com.

"We saved the best piece of good news for last: next year we will start work on a new full-length record, a follow-up to 2009's 'Polaris.'

"Best regards, happy holidays and have a great new 2010!"

Remaining confirmed tour dates are as follows: More...

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