Bigelf tour won't feature Portnoy

Mike Portnoy has confirmed he won't take part in the upcoming Bigelf tour of Europe in support of their album Into The Maelstrom.

Mainman Damon Fox brought the drummer in to record their long-awaited fourth album – and admitted the record might not have happened without the ex Dream Theater’s man’s support.

Fox said in 2013: “I had been keeping in close touch with Mike after his public and difficult departure from Dream Theater. My musical future seemed bleak and I was very vocal to him about not being able to sustain the band any longer.

“He implored me to carry on. Recognising that I needed some new allies, I asked him he would help fight the good fight, and he readily agreed.”

The result was the well-received launch of Into The Maelstrom in March, which also featured new guitarist Louis Maldonado. But Portnoy has now confirmed he won’t be with the the band when they visit the UK and Europe later this year.

He says: “Sadly, I am not playing drums with Bigelf on their upcoming European tour. As much as I wish I could, I was only ever able to commit to playing on the album and doing the Progressive Nation At Sea shows with them.

“However, I still strongly urge you all to go catch them live and help support the mighty Elf! Not only are they my brothers, they are still one of my favourite musical discoveries of the past decade. So go support great music!”

Bigelf UK dates

Aug 03: Resonance festival, London

Nov 14: Manchester Deaf Institute

Nov 15: Hard Rock Hell VII, Pwllheli

Nov 17: Glasgow Cathouse

Nov 18: Wolverhampton Slade Rooms

Nov 19: London Garage

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Not only is one-time online news editor Martin an established rock journalist and drummer, but he’s also penned several books on music history, including SAHB Story: The Tale of the Sensational Alex Harvey Band, a band he once managed, and the best-selling Apollo Memories about the history of the legendary and infamous Glasgow Apollo. Martin has written for Classic Rock and Prog and at one time had written more articles for Louder than anyone else (we think he's second now). He’s appeared on TV and when not delving intro all things music, can be found travelling along the UK’s vast canal network.