STRYPER frontman Michael Sweet will release his new solo album, "Ten", in September via Rat Pak Records. Guest musicians who appear on the disc include singer Todd La Torre (QUEENSRŸCHE), drummer Will Hunt (EVANESCENCE), bassist John O'Boyle, and guitarists Joel Hoekstra (WHITESNAKE, NIGHT RANGER), Jeff Loomis (ARCH ENEMY, NEVERMORE), Marzi Montazeri (EXHORDER, PHILIP H. ANSELMO & THE ILLEGALS), Gus G. (FIREWIND, OZZY OSBOURNE) and Andy James.
Sweet told The Metal Voice in a new interview that "Ten" is "being mastered right now. And then we're gonna start laying out a plan for videos and songs, working all that," he said. "I've gotta do a photo shoot in about five weeks, I think it is, six weeks."
According to Michael, the original plan was to release "Ten" in June or July, but "that just wasn't in the cards for a number of reasons. There's a lot of stuff on the map, on the schedule, and it wasn't reality," he explained. "And we don't wanna ever rush anything."
As for the "Ten" album title, Sweet said: "It's called 'Ten' 'cause it's my tenth album, and because there is a title track on there about the Ten Commandments — a really powerful song. There's real heavy [stuff]. It starts kind of smacking you in the face and it ends kicking you in the gut."
Michael said that there is a "a different player" appearing on every song. "It started out where I was gonna have just a few players," he said. "Then I thought, you know, it would be really interesting to bring in a different guy on every song. And I started putting names out there and reaching out to people, and they started agreeing to do it. And then I had guys reaching out to me."
Sweet previously stated about his new solo album: "There are old-school, straight-ahead metal ideas à la [JUDAS] PRIEST and DIO, as well as a few uptempo riffs à la [IRON] MAIDEN. There's also a few ballads with a bit of a [LED] ZEPPELIN vibe.
"I'm really excited about the musical direction. I'm bringing back a few of those classic hooks and melodies that some of you have asked for. Ask and you shall receive."
Sweet's last solo album, "One Sided War", was released in August 2016 via Rat Pak Records. Backing Michael on the record were Hoekstra, Hunt, O'Boyle and East Coast shred-master Ethan Brosh.
In a 2016 interview with The Aquarian Weekly, Sweet said that he enjoyed making solo albums "because it's an opportunity to free myself up a little bit more, experiment a little bit more, and try some things that STRYPER may not be able to try."
STRYPER's latest album, "God Damn Evil", was released in April 2018 via Frontiers Music Srl.