MACHINE HEAD has set "The Blackening" as the title of its sixth studio album, tentatively due in early 2007 via Roadrunner Records. The group is recording the new CD at Sharkbite Studios in Oakland, CA, with MACHINE HEAD frontman Robert Flynn returning to the producer's chair, and Mark Keaton once again handling engineering duties. Longtime MACHINE HEAD collaborator Colin Richardson (CANNIBAL CORPSE, TRIVIUM, BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE) will also be returning to mix the record alongside Flynn this October in London. Tentative songtitles for "The Blackening" include "Clenching the Fists of Dissent", "Aesthetics of Hate", "Halo", "The Beautiful Mourning", "Now I Lay Thee Down", "Slanderous Love", "Wolves" and "A Farewell to Arms". The band has also tapped longtime MACHINE HEAD artist Paul Brown (MARILYN MANSON) to begin working on album art in the coming weeks.
Flynn has posted the following update on the band's official web site:
"And Dave McClain [MACHINE HEAD drummer]... is... done!!! The man is ON muthafuckin' FIRE!!!! He put down six out of eight songs Friday, including two of the 10-minute bad boys... and then the last two Saturday... DANG!!! Yeah, yeah, par for the course for Mr. McClain, but still!!! First couple of days were spent getting the ultimate drum tones, trying out a multitude of different kits, heads, etc... Dave was ready to strangle Mr. Producer here *cough* at several points during the second day, but he finally saw the light, and in the end we got the sickest drum tones EVER, he's really fuckin' stoked. Dave and I both feel strongly about having real drum tones on this record, and getting away from the overly triggered (and in a lot of cases completely triggered) drum sound that is so prevalent in metal today. Sure, you gotta have a little bit in there — a bit in the kick, blend some in with the snare, but man, real drums sound fucking awesome when you get 'em dialed in. Been listening to 'South Of Heaven' [SLAYER] a lot, and Jesus... even by today's standards the drum tones sound just incredible... that's what we're going for... timeless shit.
"Had a couple days of studio-technical difficulties after getting drum tones, but then the rocking commenced. At Dave's request, he wanted to try just him and I tracking stuff, which is how we demo everything anyways, and it worked great... he's killing it SO hard. Drum magazine editors take note... your new king is here, and his name is Dave McClain!!!
"Gonna lay some scratch vocals today [August 28], and move on to getting the heaviest guitar tone known to man!"