Swedish melodic/symphonic death metal act Meadows End are parting ways with guitarist Rikard Öqvist. An official announcement follows:
“We’re sad to announce that Rikard has decided to leave Meadows End. He feels that his PhD studies and current life situation does not give him the spare time needed to fulfil his duty in Meadows End. The decision is entirely Riks, and the rest of us can and will do nothing but support him in his decision.
“Rik is one of the, or even perhaps THE, most diverse and talented musicians that we have ever had the opportunity to play with in Meadows End. He’s also an amazing guy with a great personality and when he contacted us to let us know he was interested in the lead guitarist spot, we did not hesitate or even consider anyone else. We will lose an amazing guitarist but we’ll forever have an amazing friend (and tour driver?! ;)). He will be surely missed and it will probably show on future creations as we can remember his remarkable solos, his Chapman Stick on Insurrection, his violin on Heathens’ Embrace and the orchestrations on Clench the Feet of Fools just to name a few…
“Rik will make his last appearance on November 28th at Metal Inferno in Bollsta. We have not yet taken any decision whether Meadows End will call in a new lead guitarist or not, we need to let this sink in and we will take a long-term decision when we’re ready.
“We thank Rikard for everything as it has been a pure pleasure and we’re glad to have had him in this journey these last three years. We wish him all the best in the future, both as a person and as a musician.”