Kiko Loureiro originally stepped away from Megadeth in September 2023 due to family matters, and has since extended his leave into 2024. Now in a new interview with the Amplifica podcast (as translated by Confere Rock), Loureiro opened up about his decision and how difficult being in a band has been on his family.
Loureiro said Megadeth didn't make him choose the band over his family, noting that "due to circumstances in my life, I have taken the liberty of choosing not to be in Megadeth. Because it's my option. Because freedom is having the choice between two viable options; that is freedom."
Loureiro went on to say that his family is now his number one priority in life, revealing that almost missed his daughter Lívia's birth thanks to a show with Angra at the Rock In Rio festival in 2011. He later mentioned that he had to leave for a Megadeth tour only 10 days after his twin sons were born.
Loureiro does not have currently have a return date for Megadeth, and issued the following statement earlier this month on his absence: "Dear Megadeth fans," he began. "I want to share with you a decision that hasn't been easy for me.
"In September, I had to step away from the U.S. leg of the tour for family reasons. Looking ahead, during 2024, we anticipate an even heavier touring schedule for Megadeth. After thorough reflection and discussions with Dave Mustaine and Megadeth's management, we have collectively agreed that it is the right move to extend my absence. I don't want to hinder any of the band's plans or the hard work of all the incredible people involved in the tour.
"My nine years with Megadeth have been an unbelievable journey, filled with countless 'pinch-me' moments. Unforgettable tours, a Grammy Award for Dystopia, a Grammy nomination, and various accolades for The Sick, The Dying, and The Dead are just a few of the highlights. It is hard to put into words the magnitude of these experiences. I am sure any heavy metal fan can appreciate how incredible it is to play and create music in a band you grew up listening to, and to share the stage with a guitar legend like Dave Mustaine, along with phenomenal musicians like James LoMenzo and Dirk Verbeuren, not to mention our incredible crew.
"However, the most cherished aspect of these nine years has been getting to know the incredible army of devoted Megadeth fans around the world. Your dedication is inspiring, and I have immense admiration and respect for all of you."