While promising a new album is just around the corner, Nightwish have announced the official leave of founding drummer Jukka Nevalainen, revealing his replacement in the process.

And although he's taken time off for chronic insomnia the past few years, the original percussionist for the Finnish symphonic metal band will continue "to take care of the band's businesses in the background" once he steps down completely from the drum throne, he said Monday (July 15).

In 2014, Nevalainen first made clear that he wouldn't contribute to Nightwish's eighth album and subsequent tours due to health issues, making the following year's Endless Forms Most Beautiful the group's first effort without him. Now, the musician has finalized that decision and ceremoniously introduced the band's new drummer, who has been performing with Nightwish as a live member since that initial announcement.

"It has now been five years since my difficult decision, due to severe insomnia, to step aside from the Vehicle of Spirit of Nightwish," Nevalainen said. "This included the previous studio album and the tours which followed. … I have decided not to push my luck by returning to the band. My dear pal Kai Hahto will take my place as a full-time member."

Hahto has previously performed with acts such as Rotten Sound, Swallow the Sun and Wintersun. Last year, Nightwish released a greatest hits compilation titled Decades.

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