Aerosmith is in the thick of work on its new studio album, which should be out in spring 2007 via Columbia. The process had not been hindered by vocalist Steven Tyler's recent throat surgery, accordin

Aerosmith is in the thick of work on its new studio album, which should be out in spring 2007 via Columbia. The process had not been hindered by vocalist Steven Tyler's recent throat surgery, according to guitarist Joe Perry. "He's sounding better than ever," Perry tells Billboard.com. "Even just listening to him talk, his voice has this timbre that I haven't heard for years."

In addition to considering material from outside songwriters, Aerosmith is looking to its archives for inspiration.

"There's some stuff we left off certain records that we've been scratching our heads over why that happened," Perry says. "There's also bits and pieces of things we haven't got to, and some stuff from [the 2004 blues album] 'Honkin' on Bobo' that never got finished. We want to bring some of the elements of the experimenting we've done on the albums over the last few years and mash that in with that 'Honkin' on Bobo'-kind of energy."

"It's kind of like the old story of the 100-year-old hammer handed down for three generations," Perry says by way of describing the method to Aerosmith's madness in the studio. "The handle has been changed three times, and the head changed four. For us, we're the same old hammer, but updated a few times."

"Some songs are still two riffs and a chorus but they're classic Aerosmith: a guitar riff and the vocals and the slammin' rhythm section," he enthuses. "Some of the material could have been written last week or 10 or 20 years ago. It's funny how some of it sounds like that to me. Some of it has bell-bottoms and big hair but it's surprising how well it fits today's playlists."

Perry says he can't wait to hit the road with Motley Crue on the the Route of All Evil tour, which begins Sept. 14 in Holmdel, N.J. "In some ways Motley Crue is like a baby band to me," he says. "You still think of them as kids. But they have gone through all the things bands go through, come back and they have a whole batch of fans who saw them at the first rock show they ever went to. When you turn on classic rock radio now, you have Motley Crue, Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin and the Stones."

In addition, Perry promises Aerosmith will be dusting off a song or two from its back catalog, similar to "Seasons of Wither" and "Draw the Line," which have come back from the dead on recent tours.

"Other songs will get that day in the sun, because they never did," he says. "Maybe other songs crowded them out. In the late '80s and early '90s, we had those singles to play and there wasn't as much interest from the fans in those songs. But there are fans that are now discovering some of those early records."