Suffocation vocalist Frank Mullen recently stated that after over 20 years of making death metal's most brutal music, he will be playing a smaller role when it comes to the future of the band. Mullen no longer feels like he can go off on tour for long periods of time, so during future shows, the vocalist will be playing some shows, while a guest vocalist will be used to fill whatever additional dates there may be.

This comes as sad news for many Suffocation fans, as Mullen is not only the innovator of the modern death metal guttural, but also a personality beloved by fans. Whether he's threatening to kill members of the audience through ridiculous means or utilizing the famous Mullen air-chop, the Suffocation vocalist is almost as entertaining as he is brutal.

Mullen revealed his diminished role in the band to Horns Up Rocks! earlier this week, but has since given a detailed explanation of his future plans. "I am not leaving Suffocation," begins Mullen. "Massive one month long touring on my side cannot be done anymore though. When the new album is released next year I will be touring as much as possible to support the album as well as the following year in 2014."

The vocalist continues, "When I was asked that question in the interview I was taken off guard and didn't really know what my schedule was going to look like next year and wanted to try and answer. I haven't given much thought to what our touring schedule would look like since we've been in the studio recording the new release. So I'm going to be getting out there as much as I can to support the album and get out there in front of the ones who have supported Suffocation over the years, the true fans. So we are going to be supporting this record as soon as it comes out"

The other members of Suffocation also commented on the situation. "We have respected this decision that Frank has made, but by no means does this mean Suffocation will 'replace' him with new singer or stop touring. Death metal has been good to us, and we feel fortunate with the success we have achieved. For shows or tours he can't be a part of there will be a well respected, talented, fill in singer, so we as a band can continue to prosper and bring Suffocation to the fans. Bill Robinson (Decrepit Birth) is a good friend of ours and came through during the European tours when Frank was unable to make the shows, but he was just filling in those two times. The fill-in singer will be announced soon, and we promise that our fans will not be let down. We have been fortunate to make a great living playing music, and are willing to continue to give our fans what they want."

Suffocation are planning to release their seventh full-length album, 'The Pinnacle of Bedlam' sometime in early 2013.

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