Australian rockers INXS confirm retirement

Australian rock band INXS, one of the world's biggest acts throughout the late 1980s and early '90s, confirmed Tuesday their retirement after 35 years.

In a statement the band, whose original frontman Michael Hutchence committed suicide 15 years ago, said media reports of their demise were true.

"We understand that this must come as a blow to everybody, but all things must eventually come to an end," said band members Tim, Andrew and Jon Farriss, Kirk Pengilly and Garry Beers.

"We have been performing as a band for 35 years, it's time to step away from the touring arena. Our music will of course live on and we will always be a part of that."

The band, which formed in 1977 and has sold more than 30 million records, played to stadiums across the globe at their peak but the death of the charismatic Hutchence hit them hard.

He was found dead in a Sydney hotel room in 1997, leaving behind a daughter, Tiger Lily, from a relationship with British TV presenter Paula Yates, who died of a heroin overdose in 2000.

Tiger Lily now lives with her legal guardian, Yates's former husband Bob Geldof.

Since then INXS has hired several other singers and performed with the likes of Terence Trent D'Arby and Australian rocker Jimmy Barnes, but they were never able to revisit their early success.

"We lived for each other in the trenches and we loved each other. It was the six of us against the world and then suddenly and inexplicably we were but five," said Jon Farriss.

"We were lost right at the moment we were on top."

His brother Andrew said they could have quit when Hutchence died but opted to carry on.

"We never took a soft option, it was the adversity, the challenge and the struggle that forged us into the live working band we became," he said.

"And this was as big as it could possibly get when it came to a challenge, and in the end we decided for a whole bunch of reasons to march forward."

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