Luke Steele Takes Five From Empire of the Sun Due to Exhaustion, Lays Off the Sleepy Jackson

Luke Steele Takes Five From Empire of the Sun Due to Exhaustion, Lays Off the Sleepy Jackson
Following a slow but sure rise to the top of the nu-psych pop heap, Australia's Empire of the Sun have shown no signs of slowing down their cosmic, space-opera fantasy train. But it seems as if their plans have suddenly a hit a snag due to "exhaustion."

During a whirlwind world tour, the duo's Luke Steele apparently lost a whopping 22 pounds, leading doctors to advise the Aussie to take breather and cancel all of Empire of the Sun's current promotional plans in support of their Exclaim!-approved debut.

"I arrived back in Australia and couldn't find the energy to do anything. I couldn't move and I hardly ate," Steele told Britain's Sun newspaper [via NME]. "The doctor said I was exhausted physically and mentally. I'm now on a high-protein diet and taking shakes to build up my strength. I also go on two-kilometre walks every morning with my wife, my daughter and my dog."

While working his way back to good health, it also seems that Steele has effectively broke up his other band, the Sleepy Jackson, telling the newspaper that the group have fallen victim to the global recession.

"I suddenly realised I had guys from Sleepy Jackson on a payroll every month and they weren't really doing anything," Steele explained. "I decided to move away from that for now."

Empire of the Sun are currently planning their return to the stage with a performance at Sydney's Parklife Festival in September. Knowing that the long break will carry the weight of anticipation for the band's return, Steele joked about some lofty plans.

"We've asked Steven Spielberg to fly in on a helicopter and host the event," he said. "His movie inspired the name of our band so we want to include him."