EXODUS frontman Steve "Zetro" Souza has confirmed that fans will have to wait until at least the end of 2019 before the band's follow-up to 2014's "Blood In Blood Out" album.
Although it was originally reported that the veteran San Francisco Bay Area thrashers would go into the studio last October to begin recording the new effort, it now appears that the band will not begin work on the next disc until guitarist Gary Holt is done playing with SLAYER as part of that band's "final" world tour.
Asked about the progress of the songwriting sessions for EXODUS's new album, Souza told interviewer Janne Vuorela on June 12 in Berlin, Germany (see video below): "Unfortunately, because our guitar player and main songwriter is finishing the SLAYER tour, we're probably going to have to wait until that's all done. So I would say 2019, late, 'cause they're booked through next year, so we're gonna wait until that's all done. I'm not saying we won't play or we won't tour; we just won't be putting out [any new music]."
According to Zetro, several new EXODUS tracks have already been written and demoed without vocals. "I've heard it," he said. "There's new songs — there is. Gary played me some new songs that he's put down in a home studio, and it's really killer. It's just the time constraints with SLAYER touring and EXODUS touring and being home all at the same time and being able to get together to put it all together, I think that, to be honest, it'll be late 2019 [before we can properly record it]."
Asked what kind of music fans can expect to hear on EXODUS's next album, Souza said: "What kind of music have you heard for the last 35 years? Absolutely heavy, brutally, violently, crazily in your face, like normal EXODUS stuff. There's gonna be no slowing down here, I'm sure."
Souza went on to say that EXODUS's overall musical approach has remained the same through the last three decades, even with all the band's lineup changes.
"I think that the essence is just the true spirit of it all, the true spirit of what we're doing," he said. "I don't think that EXODUS, even when I wasn't singing with them, or there's been… Rick Hunolt was the original guitar player — he's not there anymore — I still think that the energy and the rawness and the ferocity is there. Tom Hunting [drums] is still there, so it's still EXODUS."
"Blood In Blood Out" was EXODUS's first album since the departure of the group's lead singer of nine years, Rob Dukes, and the return of Souza, who previously fronted EXODUS from 1986 to 1993 and from 2002 to 2004.
Holt spoke in a recent interview about the musical direction of EXODUS's next disc. He said: "Of the stuff I've written so far, I think the songs are shorter, but I think they're also at the same time more progressive than the last album. It's a little outside the box. It's really super crushing, but I think people will be surprised."
He added: "It's an EXODUS album, but as of now, the stuff Tom and I have been putting together is a bit different. It's got those subtle changes that make for a departure, but it will still stay true to the core of the band's sound."