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Metallica cancels Australia, New Zealand tour as lead singer ends up in rehab

PERTH, Australia: Metallica announced cancelation of next month’s Australia and New Zealand tour as lead singer and guitarist James Hetfield, 56, was re-admitted to an addiction treatment program.

The band had scheduled its first Australian show on October 17 in Perth followed by dates in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

A joint statement released by the band on Instagram says, “Truly sorry to inform our fans and friends that we must postpone our upcoming tour.”

“As most of you probably know, our brother James has been struggling with addiction on and off for many years. He has now, unfortunately, had to re-enter a treatment program to work on his recovery again.”

“We fully intend to make our way to your part of the world as soon as health and schedule permit,” the note by Lars, Kirk and Rob read.

The band said it was “devastated” that it inconvenienced many of its “loyal fans who often travel great distances” to enjoy their concerts.

The trio assured, all tickets purchased to the shows in Australia and New Zealand, including Enhanced Experiences and Black Tickets, will be fully refunded.

Touring company Live Nation said in a statement it was working with the band to secure a new tour period and would make further announcement as soon as possible.

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