Avenged Sevenfold part ways with drummer Mike Portnoy

Band have yet to announce replacement for 2011 US tour

Avenged Sevenfold have parted ways with drummer Mike Portnoy.

Portnoy, who used to play in Dream Theater and was drafted in after the death of Avenged Sevenfold‘s founding drummer Jimmy ‘The Rev’ Sullivan last year, played drums on the band’s most recent album ‘Nightmare’, released last July.

He posted a statement on his official website, Mikeportnoy.com, this morning (December 16) announcing his departure. He explained that it was the band’s decision to boot him out of the set-up.

“Sadly my time with Avenged Sevenfold has come to an end,” he wrote. “The band has decided to carry on into 2011 without me. I had a great time with them throughout 2010, but it was their choice to end the relationship at the end of 2010 as was always the initial plan.”

He added: “I had an awesome time on stage with the guys every night and have so many cool memories from the experience with them, I am proud to always be part of the Avenged Sevenfold family and history. I also adore the Avenged Sevenfold fans and totally appreciate the way they welcomed me aboard and were so loving and supportive during my time with the band… thank you!”

Avenged Sevenfold have a US tour booked for January and February 2011 and have already confirmed a slot at Download Festival in the UK, but have yet to announce who will be behind the drumkit for those dates.