Joey Santiago (left) and Frank Black of the Pixies

Joey Santiago, left, and Frank Black of the Pixies. The band has announced the departure of bassist Kim Deal. (Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times / June 14, 2013)

It’s happened again: Kim Deal has left the Pixies, the influential rock band she co-founded with Frank "Black Francis" Black, guitarist Joey Santiago and drummer Dave Lovering in 1986. Deal is also the co-founder, with her twin sister Kelley, of the Breeders, which is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its smash debut, “Last Splash.” 

In a statement posted on the Pixies’ website, the band explained the departure. “We are sad to say that Kim Deal has decided to leave the Pixies. We are very proud to have worked with her on and off over the last 25 years. Despite her decision to move on, we will always consider her a member of the Pixies, and her place will always be here for her. We wish her all the best.”

The Pixies disbanded in 1993 after tensions between bandmates exploded both onstage and off. But the four reunited in 2004 for a tour that confirmed their status as one of the most influential rock bands of the '80s. These tours continued every few years until 2011. 

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One notable omission in the band's statement is any suggestion that the Pixies are finished as a band. Though it would be tough to imagine the other three members trying to perform a song like "Gigantic" without Deal's vocals, stranger things have happened. 

Deal hasn''t released a statement on her departure, though she's busy touring with the Breeders' original lineup. The band has been gigging Europe since early May; they perform in Dublin, Ireland, on Friday, Belfast, Northern Ireland, on Saturday and Glasgow, Scotland, on Monday. Their first American date will occur in Chicago on July 20 as part of the Pitchfork Music Festival, and they'll land in Los Angeles for the FYF Fest on Aug. 24-25.

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Follow Randall Roberts on Twitter: @liledit