Alexi Laiho, former front man of Finnish death metal band Children of Bodom, has died at age 41 after struggling with "long-term health issues," his bandmates announced.
Laiho died in his Helsinki, Finland, home last week, according to an announcement posted Monday to the band's website.
"More than 25 years of friendship. We lost a brother," read a statement on the band's website from former members Jaska Raatikainen, Henkka T. Blacksmith and Janne Wirman.
"The world lost a phenomenal song writer and one of the greatest guitarists of all time. Memories and Alexi’s music will live forever. Our thoughts are with Alexi’s family during this difficult time."
The band, known for hits "Are You Dead Yet" and "Needled 24/7," disbanded in late 2019 after first joining together in 1993 under the name Inearthed. Lahio and former Children of Bodom member Daniel Freyberg joined forces again to form a new group, Bodom After Midnight.
The new group had recorded three songs and filmed one music video, which manager manager Jouni Markkanen said would be released posthumously. A date has not yet been announced.
"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," said Freyberg and fellow Bodom After Midnight members Mitja Toivonen and Waltteri Väyrynen in a statement.
Laiho's record label described him as a "talented guitarist and musician" who "relished his roles as stepdad in his patchwork family, and as uncle and godfather." His funeral will be private, his sister added.
"Especially during the last years, the important family ties brought a welcomed balance to his life and the active touring," Markkanen's statement added. "Laiho was particularly close with his big sister, parents and his sister's daughter."
His wife, Kelli Wright-Laiho, called him "the most loving and magnificent husband and father."
"Our hearts are eternally broken," she added.