Guitarist Steve Smyth has officially quit Seattle metal titans Nevermore, citing personal and business differences.
But the good news is that after months of health problems and a kidney transplant – Steve has now been given a full health clearance by doctors.
"All things find their end eventually, and at this time I wish to make it clear that this was mutually agreed between the band and myself," Steve said in a statement.
"I will continue on with other aspects of my music career, including the upcoming release of The Esseness Project, an all-instrumental album in the vein of progressive rock that is now finished and being prepared for release."
He added, "After a year and four months of being out of the touring scene due to ill health and then a kidney transplant, I have finally been given a full health clearance by my doctors to go back on the road, and I am now ready to return to the stage.
"I am proud and extremely honored to have been a guest of Uli Jon Roth at his Sky Academy concert series this past weekend, August 24th and 25th , in L.A. What an awesome experience! To jam with one of the greatest, as well as several other incredible guitarists and musicians who have been big influences on my playing over the years, and to make new friends as well, the whole thing was just incredible. Many thanks to Uli for inviting me, it was truly an honor!
Smyth recently guested with Uli Jon Roth during his Sky Academy concert series in LA and will spend the next couple of months helping out on guitar duties with Danish thrashers Hatesphere.
It's not yet clear whether Nevermore will utilise Chris Broderick – who has been playing with the band for live dates lately – on a long-term basis.