Superchunk bassist Laura Ballance won’t be touring with the group in support of its new record, I Hate Music. In an open letter, Ballance said it’s not because she hates music or because she’s too old, but rather because she’s developed hyperacusis. The condition—the same one preventing Stephin Merritt from touring—makes Ballance overly sensitive to certain sounds, and leads to hearing loss and ringing in the ears.

Ballance says she hopes to play shows in the future, provided she can figure out a way to protect her hearing. She says she even hopes to be able to pop up on a few shows on the I Hate Music tour, but that fans shouldn’t really buy tickets for the tour based on that possibility. “Chances are I won’t be there,” she says. “If I will, I will let you know in advance.”


Jason Narducy will take Ballance’s spot on tour, but not in the group. Ballance played on the new record, and says she’ll play on all future records as well.

I Hate Music is out Aug. 20 on Merge.