Metallica have announced that frontman James Hetfield, who has struggled with addiction issues for years, has entered rehab, forcing them to cancel their upcoming tour dates in Australia and New Zealand.

The statement was accompanied by details of how fans in those locations can claim refunds, while the band vowed to reschedule the Worldwired dates at some point in the future.

In a message on their website titled “A Note From Lars [Ulrich], Kirk [Hammett] and Rob [Trujillo],” Metallica said, “We are truly sorry to inform our fans and friends that we must postpone our upcoming tour of Australia and New Zealand. 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. We’ll let you know as soon as we can. Once again, we are devastated that we have inconvenienced so many of you, especially our most loyal fans who travel great distances to experience our shows. We appreciate your understanding and support for James and, as always, thank you for being a part of our Metallica family.”

Refund information was posted on the LIveNation Australia and Live Nation New Zealand websites, with separate information for those who purchased enhanced packages. The tour dates had been set to take place from Oct. 17 to Nov. 2, with a total of eight shows canceled.


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