Heavy rockers ANTHRAX have launched a search for a new guitarist following ROB CAGGIANO's departure from the band.
Caggiano has been a member of Scott Ian's group for the past decade, but announcing the news on Friday (04Jan13), he revealed he wants to concentrate on producing.
A statement from the guitarist, obtained by Blabbermouth.net, reads: "I'm extremely proud of my time in ANTHRAX. Actually, that's an understatement! We accomplished so many great things together over the years and I shared some of the best times of my life with these guys.
"As a band, we also weathered quite a few storms along the way. It's been a wild ride (to say the least) from Day One and I wouldn't change one single thing about the last 12 years."
He adds, "This is an extremely difficult and emotional decision for me to make, but my heart is just steering me in a different direction right now. I've always been one to follow my heart in everything that I do and while this might be one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make, it feels like the right one for me at this time...
"In this day and age, being a musician isn't always easy - also an understatement - but the fans truly make it worthwhile for me. I hope to see each and every one of you again really soon. The fact that ANTHRAX is at the top of their game right now and totally 'out for blood' after all these years is a testament to this band's longevity and conviction! I'm truly honored to have been a part of their brilliant legacy."
Meanwhile a statement from the group reads: "Rob has been an integral part of ANTHRAX for so many years, as our lead guitarist, in a production capacity, but most of all, as our close friend. His contributions to the band have been enormous. While we are sad that he is leaving, we wish him nothing but great success going forward, and hope to share the stage with him again sometime down the road."