Devastating news today as I learned from Revocation’s Instagram of the sudden passing of the true rock n roll warrior Alexi Laiho. Hot on the heels of the news of another musical genius of another genre, the enigmatic rapper MF Doom, we now start 2021 saying goodbye to a hero of shred with the passing of Alexi.
I am so glad he had a keen work ethic and there are many CoB releases for us to treasure for years to come. I am so glad I got to see them live finally once when they toured with Clutch and Black Label Society. The metal scene weeps today. Some people may think shred virtuoso playing is “cheesy” or over the top but it is a bedrock foundational corner of thrash and heavy metal. When I hear Alexi play soaring solos that bordered on power metal at times but soaked in the grim blood of rock n’ roll infused thrash madness, it could lift me out of my daily pains and into a world of possibility and thankful escape. I am sure I am not alone in this.
Laiho was an Aries like me and just a year and a few days younger and it makes me really want to underscore to you readers to please, please treasure your loved ones, lives and moments. Don’t waste the opportunity to reach for your dreams!
A statement from his official Facebook team can be read below:
One of the most renowned guitarists in the world, Alexi Laiho, has passed away. The musician, most notably known as the front man of Children of Bodom, died in his home in Helsinki, Finland, last week. Laiho had suffered from long-term health issues during his last years.
Alexi Laiho and drummer Jaska Raatikainen founded Children of Bodom in 1993, and the band was one of the most internationally acclaimed metal acts in Finland up until their very last farewell concert in December of 2019. Last year Alexi Laiho put together Bodom After Midnight, who recorded three songs and shot one music video, which will be released later on posthumously.
Besides Children of Bodom, Laiho was known for acts such as Warmen, Sinergy, Kylähullut and The Local Band. Awarded with a Metal Hammer Golden Gods and several other international prizes, the guitarist was also the main star, leading a group of one hundred guitar players at Helsinki Festival in 2015 in “100 Guitars From Hel” – a massive concert piece he composed.
“We are crushed by the sudden passing of our dear friend and band member. Words cannot describe this shock and the profound sadness that we feel”, Daniel Freyberg, Mitja Toivonen and Waltteri Väyrynen from Bodom After Midnight state.
The talented guitarist and musician relished his roles as stepdad in his patchwork family, and as uncle and godfather. Especially during the last years, the important family ties brought a welcomed balance to his life and the active touring. Laiho was particularly close with his big sister, parents and his sister’s daughter. Laiho’s sister says:
“We are all absolutely shocked and devastated. We ask for privacy and understanding during these hard times. My little brother’s funeral will take place privately.”
Alexi Laiho will also be deeply missed by his family in Australia.
“Alexi was the most loving and magnificent husband and father. Our hearts are eternally broken”, Kelli Wright-Laiho says.
The remaining members of Bodom After Midnight do not give any interviews at this time.
Bodom After Midnight management