After a musical detour toward acoustic blues and country on its 2005 set "Howl," California trio Black Rebel Motorcycle Club is veering back into electric guitar-driven rock for its fourth album.
After a musical detour toward acoustic blues and country on its 2005 set "Howl," California trio Black Rebel Motorcycle Club is veering back into electric guitar-driven rock for its fourth album. The-as-yet-untitled set is "maybe 80 or 90% done," principal member Peter Hayes tells Billboard.com, and is due in February or March via RCA.
Hayes says BRMC didn't want to make an entire record full of the in-your-face, psychedelic rock found on 2003's "Take Them On, On Your Own," so the group incorporated some of the more textured production elements from "Howl" as a balance. "Things open up and break down within the songs, a lot," he says. "There are some songs that are kind of groove-oriented, not so blues or country influenced."
According to Hayes, "666 Conducer" is the most even blend of the last two albums, while "All You Do Is Talk" was built using 12 different guitar parts. "I played one string at a time making a chord and then doubled it," he says. "That's a big, thick wall of guitar, that one." Another song, "Am I Only," begins on acoustic "but opens up into big, distorted guitars. It also has a harmonium going along with it and some harmonica."
Other cuts expected to appear on the album include "Berlin," "The Show," "Cold Wind," "Weapon of Choice" and "Killin' the Light." Hayes and colleague Robert Levon Been were joined in the studio by drummer Nick Jago, who sat out the majority of the "Howl" sessions. "When he came in for the last record, there were two songs we did with him that we left off," Hayes said. "We knew they'd be for this one. We used those two songs as a starting point for what this album was going to sound like, and we stuck to it, for the most part."
Having taken time out to open two stadium shows for the Rolling Stones earlier this month in Missoula, Mont., and Wichita, Kan., BRMC is now hunkering down to polish off the new album's last few vocal and mixing touches.
"We made the statement we wouldn't do anything until we get this done, but all the sudden we get offers like the Rolling Stones," Hayes says. "Something has come up in Brazil for December -- all these great things we've wanted to do since we've been touring. There's a possibility of part of an American tour with another band. But we need to sit and try to get this done if it's going to come out in February or March. I don't know how it happens but we always seem to be not on time, all the time."