Atreyu to Tour Without Screamer Alex Varkatzas
Atreyu frontman Alex Varkatzas has made the following announcement on social media:
“There is no easy way to say this, but I am very sorry that I will not be able to join Atreyu on this upcoming European tour. At this point my body & mind need to heal in order for me to continue with all the things we have planned for 2019.”
In a lengthy elaboration that follows, Varkatzas goes on to explain he has “severely aggravated a damaged disc in my back at L5-Sl,” limiting his physical capabilities to such an extent that he “was briefly hospitalized last year… & unable to walk for several days, followed by a week on a walker.” An eventual MRI revealed that not only was Varkatzas suffering from a bulging disc, but an inguinal hernia as well. Regardless, Varkatzas was able to complete the following Atreyu tour, but “After flying home I’ve been in constant agony. I would be lying to you if I said it wasn’t taking its toll on me mentally as well.”
Atreyu will embark on the European tour regardless, with bassist Marc McKnight handling Varkatzas’ vocal parts and drummer/vocalist Brandon Saller “up front” — which I take to mean that Saller’s kit will literally be up front, closer to the edge of the stage than usual.
So that’s all terrible. It’s no secret that we’re not Atreyu fans here at MetalSucks (although I will always have a soft spot for 2006’s A Death-Grip on Yesterday), but we would never wish this on Varkatzas. I’ve had serious lower back problems and I’ve had an inguinal hernia and they both suck, hard. My heart goes out to the dude. I sincerely hope he’s able to get better soon so he can get back to doing what he does best: creating and performing music that thrills scores of people who are not me.
You can read Varkatzas’ full statement, and watch an accompanying video, below. Atreyu’s upcoming European tour dates are at the bottom of this post.
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There is no easy way to say this, but I am very sorry that I will not be able to join Atreyu on this upcoming European tour. At this point my body & mind need to heal in order for me to continue with all the things we have planned for 2019. I owe you all an explanation. It will be lengthy… Just about 2 weeks before the Spring Invasion tour I severely aggravated a damaged disc in my back at L5-Sl, giving horrible muscle spasms & limiting my ability to walk, go to the bathroom, basically fucks everything. I was briefly hospitalized last year for this same thing & unable to walk for several days, followed by a week on a walker. After this last injury before the Spring Invasion tour, my back never stopped aching & I started to suffer some pains in the lower abdominal/manly region ????. An MRI showed a bulging disc at L5-S1 that was a little worse than last year & revealed a surprise inguinal hernia. I was able to start physical therapy for my back right away but was unable to start on hernia. I was given an Oral steroid the day before I left for tour & started to barely feel ok after a few days. I was advised to take it easy or I would create further issues. After flying home I’ve been in constant agony. I would be lying to you if I said it wasn’t taking its toll on me mentally as well. It was very hard to accept & tell the guys in the band that my doctors advised me to not make the trip & take care of my body. My brothers in Atreyu will rock on without me this run. It will be a very special, one of a kind experience with Brandon up front & Porter screaming! I have an upcoming epidural, therapy & a follow up appointment to discuss the impending possibility of hernia surgery before Disrupt. I’m terribly sorry & thank you for the faith in our band. a HUGE, I’m sorry to: Slam Dunk Fest, FortaRock, Rock Im Park, Rock Am Ring & the rest of the promoters. Finally to anyone who was looking forward to see me perform with the band on this run. I know you are disappointed & all I can do is offer my sincerest apologies & fully explain the situation. Something I normally wouldn’t like to do. So there it is. I wish my brothers in Atreyu a safe & fun tour.
Atreyu Tour Dates
05/25 Leeds, UK – Slam Dunk
05/26 Hatfield, UK – Slam Dunk
05/29 Oslo, NOR – John Dee
05/30 Stockholm, SWE – Klubben
05/31 Copenhagen, DEN – Amager Bio
06/01 Nijmegen, NET – FortaRock
06/03 Hamburg, GER – Logo
06/04 Berlin, GER – Frannz
06/05 Brno, CZE – Fleda
06/06 Budapest, HUN – A38
06/08 Nuremburg, GER – Rock im Park
06/09 Nurbug, GER – Rock am Ring