The Verve Reportedly Break Up For the Third Time

August 12, 2009 5:03 PM ET

The Verve have once again decided to call it quits, breaking up for the third time in the band's 19 year tenure after reuniting for last year's comeback album Forth. According to the U.K.'s Mirror, Verve guitarist Nick McCabe and bassist Simon Jones haven't spoken to frontman Richard Ashcroft since August 2008, and that the band's indefinite holiday from each other has become a full-blown split.

"As far as Nick and Simon are concerned the Verve no longer exists," a source close to McCabe and Jones said. "They think Richard [Ashcroft] was just using the reunion as a vehicle to get his solo career on track." The Verve reunited in 2007 after splitting for the second time in 1999, just two years after their biggest album Urban Hymns. One of the reasons the band split then was Nick McCabe's reported "wild partying," which almost ended the Verve's 2007 comeback as well. "Their management called Simon and Nick in for a crisis meeting in September. They were told that Richard refused to tour or work with them again as long as Nick continued to drink," the source said, but even after McCabe sobered up, nothing changed between the pair and Ashcroft.

According to the Mirror, Jones and McCabe have already formed a new band called the Black Ships with drummer Mig Shallice and Goldfrapp violinist Davide Rossi, who also arranged the strings on the Verve's Forth as well as Coldplay's Viva La Vida. The Black Ships have already posted a song on their MySpace page, with Jones making reference to the Verve's quote-unquote vacation as an opportunity to launch this new band. Thus far, no official statement regarding the end of the Verve has been made by the band.

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