According to a press release, K.K. Downing is leaving Judas Priest. The 59-year-old guitarist has been a member of the British metal giants since 1970. Says the notice:

It is with regret that Judas Priest announce that K.K. DOWNING has formally retired from the band and will therefore not be joining them on their forthcoming EPITAPH Tour. The band respect his decision and naturally all wish him well.

The band will continue with Richie Faulker filling Downing’s slot on the upcoming Epitaph tour.

Read the entire press release right here.