Australian progressive metal band VANISHING POINT have issued the following statement regarding the recent departure of bassist Joe Del Mastro:"We were all deeply saddened and completely shocked when we all sat down for what was going to be just another normal and regular rehearsal. It was in a moment of confusion and laughter, because we were just joking around as we do when we get together, when Joe said that he had something to say in a rather sad tone, his voice getting kind of louder to get over the loud bellowing laughter from us joking around. He sounded as if someone had passed away. "'Guys … GUYS … I have some thing to say …' It was something that we all never expected to hear but in a very brief moment of silence it was out. 'I'm leaving the band.' We were all shell-shocked, we just didn't know what to say or do or think, it was even too hard to believe. VANISHING POINT share something what a lot of bands dream of and that is the great friendship that is a huge bond that can never be broken. With Joe's explanations as to why he wanted to leave, a huge level of respect and understanding came over us. With that said Joe will be greatly missed, we may have lost him as a member of VANISHING POINT but never as a life-long friend." VANISHING POINT have begun the arduous task of finding a replacement bassist. After releasing three studio albums and completing extensive European and Australian tours, VANISHING POINT seek a bassist "with great communication skills who is friendly and easy-going and is willing to commit 100%," the band write on their web site. "Must have the ability to write in a team environment and have some stage experience. Should be financially secure and be able to tour overseas." More information is available at www.vanishing-point.com.au. VANISHING POINT's new album, "Embrace The Silence", was released this past May through Dockyard 1, the new German company/record label formed by Dirk Putzke, Christine Stephan (both ex-Sanctuary/Noise Records) and Piet Sielck (IRON SAVIOR). "Embrace the Silence" is available in Australia and New Zealand through Modern Invasion Music.