DRAGONFORCE has parted ways with longtime bassist Frédéric Leclercq (pictured above).

Leclercq, who became an official member of DRAGONFORCE in 2006, will play his last show with the band this weekend at Elb-Riot in Hamburg, Germany.

Frédéric said: “I had an amazing opportunity that will be announced soon. There is no bad blood and I wish the band all the best. I want to thank the fans for their support throughout the years.”

Guitarist Herman Li said: “We want to thank Fred for all the musical contributions and good times over the years. As sad as we are to lose him, we are excited that he is going to continue playing the music he loves. He will always be a friend and a member of the DRAGONFORCE family.”

Filling in on bass for the U.S. leg of DRAGONFORCE‘s upcoming world tour will be musician and YouTube personality Stevie T (Steve Terreberry).

Li originally jokingly invited Stevie T to join the band this summer, asking him to play the triangle. Stevie T responded with a video on his YouTube channel, accepting Li‘s offer and playing an extended triangle solo to DRAGONFORCE‘s hit “Through The Fire And Flames”.

Li said: “I was deeply moved when I saw Stevie T‘s technical precision and finesse on the triangle and immediately invited him to join the tour. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see the greatest triangle player ever to grace this earth.”

DRAGONFORCE will release its eighth full-length album, “Extreme Power Metal”, on September 27. Produced in Los Angeles, California by Damien Rainaud at Mix Unlimited, “Extreme Power Metal” was also recorded, in part, on Li‘s livestream channel on Twitch with participation from the fans.

Regarding “Extreme Power Metal”, Li said: “This album again combines the best of DRAGONFORCE in an even bigger, more epic way than we have ever done before. We are so excited for fans to hear it.” Following the departure of Vadim Pruzhanov from the band last year, the keyboards of this new album were performed by Coen Janssen of symphonic metal titan EPICA, bringing a new dimension into a DRAGONFORCE album. Guitarist Sam Totman said: “We worked really closely with Coen on this new album. We are so happy with what he has brought into this new album. Every fan will be so happy to hear his majestic playing.”

Fonte: Blabbermouth.net