Date: December 6, 2023 11:52 pm
Longtime Megadeth guitarist Kiko Loureiro announced in a statement on Sunday (Nov. 19) that he and Megadeth have decided to permanently part ways with each other after he and the band “collectively agreed that it is the right move to extend my absence.”
Loureiro already wasn’t touring with the group — he stepped away from the Dave Mustaine-led outfit in September to tend to a family matter, he had said at the time.
Megadeth played their first show with Loureiro’s fill-in, guitarist Teemu Mäntysaari, on Sept. 6, just one day after the band revealed Mäntysaari would sub in. Now, it appears that Mäntysaari could be the new permanent Megadeth guitarist in Loureiro’s absence.
READ MORE: Megadeth Guitarist Kiko Loureiro Pulls Out of Tour, Fill-In Member Announced
Below, read Loureiro’s message to Megadeth fans.
Dear Megadeth fans,
I want to share with you a decision that hasn’t been easy for me.
In September, I had to step away from the U.S. leg of the tour for family reasons. Looking ahead, during 2024, we anticipate an even heavier touring schedule for Megadeth. After thorough reflection and discussions with Dave Mustaine and Megadeth’s management, we have collectively agreed that it is the right move to extend my absence. I don’t want to hinder any of the band’s plans or the hard work of all the incredible people involved in the tour.
My nine years with Megadeth have been an unbelievable journey, filled with countless ‘pinch-me’ moments. Unforgettable tours, a Grammy Award for ‘Dystopia,’ a Grammy nomination, and various accolades for “The Sick, The Dying, and The Dead” are just a few of the highlights. It is hard to put into words the magnitude of these experiences. I am sure any heavy metal fan can appreciate how incredible it is to play and create music in a band you grew up listening to, and to share the stage with a guitar legend like Dave Mustaine, along with phenomenal musicians like James LoMenzo and Dirk Verbeuren, not to mention our incredible crew.
However, the most cherished aspect of these nine years has been getting to know the incredible army of devoted Megadeth fans around the world. Your dedication is inspiring, and I have immense admiration and respect for all of you.
Much love, see you soon!