It is with genuine sadness that we make the announcement that Black Atom have decided to split up. Having spent the last ten years bringing our own particular brand of melodic progressive metal to Aberdeen and the surrounding area, it is going to be strange getting used to not having the Atom in our lives any longer. While we are still very much firm friends, it is difficult nowadays to find the time to dedicate to practicing and writing new material. Many of us have other projects, lives and wives and children - The success of My Mind's Weapon obviously takes up a lot of Dan's time, Mac is busy with Hot Mangu, Rass has been taking abuse as the bassist in Deadloss Superstar and I have Thrashist Regime to wreck my neck with. Len is now full-time teaching at the college and is always busy drumming for productions in the Arts Centre, and Erskine just has one of the busiest lives of anyone I have ever met. Over the last two years Black Atom have gigged less and less, and over the summer we have hardly practiced at all. With songs as complicated as some of ours it is tough to get back in a room and play them as well as we would like and the songs themselves deserve. We take away many happy memories and experiences. From the early days playing at Mearns Academy in Laurencekirk and Drakes Dungeon on the Castlegate, through the happy times of getting to support some of our favourite bands such as Blaze and Thin Lizzy and playing stellar local gigs with the likes of Festr, Risactonia, Liber8, 7 Stone Under, Hot Mangu, Quik and all the rest, the famous twelve-man gig we played at Dr Drakes which required stage extensions and a flutist/saxophonist, to the more recent gigs at the Moorings where we have been greeted with an overwhelming audience response, we have enjoyed almost every second of it. We leave behind a body of work of which we are extremely proud, and we will miss the songs more than you will believe. I feel priveleged to have been allowed to sing on the creations of Len 'The Maestro' Wiltshire for so many years and to have worked with some of the best guitarists in town. And Erskine! This is not, however, quite the end. They say it's better to go out with a bang than to fade away, and, as some of you may be aware, we have spent the last two years writing a 21-minute epic about an Antactic misadventure. Having finally reached the end, we are in the process of recording it and plan to release it as our swansong, alongside our other previously unrecorded song Cicatrix. We will also be playing three goodbye gigs, at which we will put the songs to bed and celebrate our tenth anniversary. First on the agenda we have Halloween at Drummonds on Friday with Thrashist Regime, Hot Mangu, My Mind's Weapon and Enrapture. Should be great, and a veritable smorgasbord of costumes and general Halloween related fun. It's an early gig, so come down and catch Thrashist Regime from 7.45pm. Doors are at 7.30pm. Then we have a gig at The Moorings on December the 6th with Festr. This will be the tenth anniversary gig for both bands, as we began gigging together at Mearns Academy at the arse end of 1998. It seems that fitting that we played together at Atom's second gig and we are still together a decade later at our second last gig. Bound to be awesome fun, worth paying the money just for Spoonie's legendary banter. Our final performance will be at Drummonds on Sunday December 14th at Drummonds. We can exclusively reveal that for one of the support slots the famous Risactonia have been coaxed into reforming for one night only. As one of our favourite ever Aberdonian Metal bands we are immensely pleased that we will be ending our career with them. We will have a whopping long set and it should hopefully be a brilliant final hurrah. In an ideal world we'd like to think that every year or so we may get together and play the odd gig here and there, but knowing the way life goes we really don't know how likely that actually is, especially given the complexity of the songs and the fact that life is fairly likely to take some of us far from the gloomy skies of Aberdeen. Also, in one of those ironies of fate, a Central American record label has approached us with a view to releasing The Tie That Binds in several countries across America. While the timing of this may seem somewhat inappropriate we are pressing ahead, and who knows, if it sells well and we go multi-platinum in Honduras or Brazil and they want us to go and play over there then it's possible that could happen. Once more, I cannot stress how lucky I feel to have been part of such an awesome band. We have won the prestigious Fudge Award for 'Most Metal of Metal' every year since its inception, and will retire proudly undefeated! Thanks to everyone who, over the last decade, ever came to see us, put a gig on for us, did our sound, bought one of our cds or filled in for any AWOL memeber (in actual fact there is no-one on the planet who has attended every single Atom gig, not even me!). We have always had a phenomenal bunch of fans who have made us feel like Gods instead of the insignificant little specks of humanity we really are. Cheers to you all, we shall miss you.