Former axeman Tolkki reveals “vicious” lawyer’s letter in response to name use request – and slams band as “simple franchise”

Timo Tolkki

No future: Timo Tolkki

Former Stratovarius leading light Timo Tolkki has slammed the current incarnation of the band as a “simple franchise” without soul, and says it will split within the next five years.

His outburst comes after the outfit responded to his request to use a variant of the band name with what he calls a “vicious” lawyer’s letter.

The drama arose after the guitarist, songwriter and producer opened discussions with other former band members about working on a follow-up to 1994 album Dreamspace.

Tolkki, who left the power metal band in 2008, tells Rock Overdose: “Me, Tuomo Lassila, the founding member of Stratovarius, and Antti Ikonen have talked about making an album called Return to Dreamspace.

“I wrote to Stratovarius and asked if we could use the name for this one album because there is the founding member of the band involved, who invented the name.

“We got a vicious letter from their lawyer, saying we’d be sued immediately if we used the name.

“It just shows the attitude – it is sad to see a band that once had life and soul in it is now a simple franchise, a money-making machine. Stratovarius will not exist in five years.”

But Tolkki believes it’s not just his former outfit who will soon be gone – and that’s part of the reason he’s considering his future as an artist.

He explains: “In the present market situation is is not possible to earn an income being a professional musician. We are going to see more bands from the middle league failing in the next three to five years, because record companies are dying themselves.

“The music business is becoming boring and predictable – and it is dying.”

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