Reunited Bay Area thrashers EXODUS have delayed the recording of their new studio album until early next year.
The as-yet-untitled effort — the group's first studio CD since 1992's "Force of Habit" — was originally scheduled to be recorded during November at Sonic Ranch studios (formerly Village Productions) in Tornillo, Texas with producer Andy Sneap (NEVERMORE, ARCH ENEMY, MACHINE HEAD, SKINLAB). However, the songwriting process took longer than expected, eventually forcing the recording dates to be pushed back.
"I was really pushing for [the band] to get into the studio in November, but I guess that was just too unrealistic for EXODUS," manager Steve Warner told BLABBERMOUTH.NET. "Maybe I was rushing them a bit too much."
With regards to the new material, Warner said, "The songs sound great, and [the band] are now just going to take their time… Well, maybe not take their time, but they are definitely not rushing anything. All they really have left to do is finish the lyrics to about six songs and then they will be done. I will have them rehearsing still on tour during soundchecks, and they will be playing four new songs at all of the headlining shows [in Europe] we are doing [later this month]."
Although Sneap is still said to be very much interested in producing the upcoming CD, he is currently booked to work on various other projects until April. As a result, EXODUS are presently considering other options.
"We are still talking with Andy Sneap," Warner explained. "I think he has commitments until April. We don't want to wait that long — we will be more than ready by then. Maybe he will be able to switch some things around for us once he hears the songs. Otherwise we do have one other producer in mind that wants to work with us [Dave "Rave" Ogilvie, of SKINNY PUPPY fame]."
As previously reported, the upcoming album will likely surface through a new label entity formed by former EXODUS manager Toni Isabella and one-time Capitol Records A&R executive Rachel Matthews (who signed EXODUS and RIGOR MORTIS to the label back in the late '80s).
The CD — which will include reworked versions of at least two songs originally written for and demoed by WARDANCE, the ill-fated mid-'90s act formed by EXODUS guitarist Gary Holt and drummer Tom Hunting — is not expected before summer 2003 at the earliest.
Among the titles set to appear on the album are "Throwing Down", "AnGary", "Crime Of The Century", "War Is My Shepherd" and "Tempo of the Damned".
In related news, plans still exist for EXODUS guitarist Gary Holt to collaborate with Warner and Ogilvie on a side project called DRUG PIG, which is tentatively due to record a full-length album in late spring/early summer.
The band, who were previously hoping to enlist former FAITH NO MORE/current FANTOMAS frontman Mike Patton to sing in the group, are currently on the lookout for a vocalist that will complement the band's guitar-heavy sound while being able to add dynamics to what is shaping up to be a more experimental musical approach than that of Holt's main outfit.
"I have a couple of guys in mind that I want to participate on the album or maybe find a new killer guy that nobody has heard yet we haven't really decided," Warner said. "We are just starting to get in contact with a few of the ones we want to see what they would want as far a fees go.
"We need someone that has a wide range and will not be afraid to experiment with some new things," Steve added. "I'm sure we will find the right person. We have a lot of great resources to help us look. And, more importantly, the label is very excited for this album to be made and they are always throwing names of singers out at me. I also know they will get behind this project. They will give us what we need to make it a great! So far I think it will be just Gary, Rave and I that will track just about everything."