Bolt Thrower confirm split

Bolt Thrower
(Image credit: Sarah Bennett)

Bolt Thrower frontman Karl Willetts has confirmed to Metal Hammer that the band have officially called it a day.

The band issued a statement earlier today to pay tribute to late drummer Martin ‘Kiddie’ Kearns one year after the 38-year-old’s sudden death. While they said they wouldn’t ever replace Kearns, it wasn’t clear from the statement whether that meant Bolt Thrower would disband.

Now Willetts says: “Yes, I can confirm that Bolt Thrower are definitely over for good. There will be no reunion tours etc…no compromise.”

Kearns passed away peacefully in his sleep last year after being taken unwell at rehearsal. Bolt Thrower said they wanted to deal with his death privately and take time to consider their next move.

The earlier statement read: “When we carried his coffin to his final resting place, the Bolt Thrower drummer position was buried with him.

“He was, and will now forever remain ‘the’ Bolt Thrower drummer, our Powerhouse and friend Martin ‘Kiddie’ Kearns.”

Formed in Coventry, England, in 1986, Bolt Thrower released eight albums – the most recent being 2005’s Those Once Loyal.

In the wake of Kearns’ death, Willets formed a new band called Memoriam alongside former bandmate Andy Whale and Benediction pair Frank Healy and Scott Fairfax.

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Stef wrote close to 5,000 stories during his time as assistant online news editor and later as online news editor between 2014-2016. An accomplished reporter and journalist, Stef has written extensively for a number of UK newspapers and also played bass with UK rock favourites Logan. His favourite bands are Pixies and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Stef left the world of rock'n'roll news behind when he moved to his beloved Canada in 2016, but he started on his next 5000 stories in 2022.