Alternative rock greats the Pixies yesterday scrapped appearances for their upcoming album as lead guitarist Joey Santiago went into rehab.

The band said that Santiago would stay at a rehabilitation centre for at least 30 days to treat alcohol and drug issues.

The Pixies will therefore call off promotional appearances around its album Head Carrier, which comes out on September 30, but still plan a tour of Europe that starts November 15 in Vienna.

“This is the best thing that Joey could have done, and we’re very proud that he’s taken this step,” drummer David Lovering said in a statement.

“We ask all of our fans to support Joey while he’s on this road to recovery,” he said.

Santiago, born in the Philippines, is one of three remaining founding members in the Boston-born band along with Lovering and frontman Black Francis.

Bassist Kim Deal, also known for her band The Breeders, left in 2013 after years of on-off friction with Black Francis.

The Pixies became an underground sensation in the 1980s with their combination of distorted guitar and surrealist lyricism, with their hit Debaser inspired by Salvador Dali.

Their sound became a major influence on acts such as Nirvana who led the alternative rock revolution of the early 1990s.

The Pixies disbanded at the height of their fame, returning in 2004, but it took an additional 10 years before the group released another album, Indie Cindy, in 2014.

Head Carrier is the second album since the band reunited.