NEVERMORE guitarist Steve Smyth has been diagnosed with end-stage kidney failure, the result of a congenital birth defect. Says Smyth: "I have been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease, and have been advised to preserve my health as much as possible at this time, as I am facing 'complete renal failure' within six months, and ultimately, a transplant. Due to my recently diagnosed condition, I have decided not to join the band on the IN FLAMES U.S. tour. I want to be fair to the fans, and be able to give them a show I know I can deliver night after night. I will, however, join NEVERMORE on all four of the European festivals on our itinerary in early June: Gods of Metal, Rock Hard, Rott Fest, and Sweden Rock, after which, the doctors should have some news about the next step in my treatment. I will say this: I will fight this, and I will be back!" JAG PANZER guitarist Chris Broderick will fill in for Smyth on the upcoming U.S. tour, after which Smyth will rejoin the band for the aforementioned European festival dates.NEVERMORE announced last week that their bass player and one of the founding members Jim Sheppard will soon be undergoing a minor procedure for Crohn's Disease, a condition he's managed for over 15 years. Unable to perform with the band during the first part of their upcoming tour with IN FLAMES, Sheppard will be temporarily replaced longtime friend James MacDonough (ex-MEGADETH, ICED EARTH). NEVERMORE, who just wrapped up a series of dates with ARCH ENEMY, will be supporting DISTURBED across Europe this fall. After their touring activity the band will be taking time off to write the follow-up to last year’s critically acclaimed album "This Godless Endeavor".