Asia have officially introduced new guitarist Sam Coulson in a video clip. View it below.
The 26-year-old was named as Steve Howe’s replacement on the same day the founding member surprised fans by announcing his departure.
Coulson, who’s already at work on Asia’s next album, Valkyrie, says: “I’m very pleased to be in the band, looking forward to putting perhaps a bit of a heavier edge on some of the classic songs.
“There’s definitely key songs you hear on the radio which I’m familiar with and enjoy listening to. It’s been good going over the back catalogue and making myself familiar with everything else. Great band with great musicianship and catchy tunes – it’s the best of both worlds.”
Drummer Carl Palmer comments: “I think the band before sounded great but I think this will sound different in a good way; in a tougher way.”
Frontman John Wetton says the new lineup will sound “less fussy, more to the point, more direct, harder hitting – generally rejuvenated.”
Coulson, who got the Asia job after being recommended by Paul Gilbert, will make his live debut at this year’s Sweden Rock on the weekend of June 5-8. Howe is currently on the road with Yes, who are midway through a US tour during which they perform three classic albums in full each night.