Rockers Death Cab For Cutie are set to part ways with group co-founder Chris Walla after 17 years.

The guitarist/keyboardist announced the news on Wednesday (13Aug14), revealing he will bow out of the band's line-up after wrapping up ongoing tour commitments at the Rifflandia Festival in Victoria, Canada on 13 September (14).

Walla insists the decision to leave Death Cab For Cutie was not "easy", but, in a statement released to, he explains, "I think I long for the unknown."

He adds, "I will miss being a quarter of this band, and will support whatever course Death Cab for Cutie chooses from here. I am profoundly grateful to (bandmates) Ben (Gibbard), Nick (Harmer) and Jason (MCGerr) for the experiences that define my adult life. Truly grateful, beyond words. Thank you...

"It's really, really sad. I love my bandmates, and I'm proud of what we've done, and mercifully, those things don't change with my departure. Moving forward, my plans are simply to continue making music, producing records, and erring on the side of benevolence and beauty whenever possible. Darkness may find me, but I shall never choose it."

Meanwhile, a message released by his bandmates reads: "We've had an incredible 17 years of making music with Chris and are very proud of what we've accomplished together, including our 8th studio album which we have just put the finishing touches on (sic).

"We will miss Chris and wish him all the best in the next chapter of his career. We're excited about sharing new music, and seeing all of you very soon."

Death Cab For Cutie's follow-up to 2011's Codes and Keys album is due for release early next year (15).

A replacement for Walla has yet to be announced.