Joe Strummer's surviving bandmates in the Mescaleros are at the "finishing stages" of work on the album they were recording before Strummer's sudden death in December.

Joe Strummer's surviving bandmates in the Mescaleros are at the "finishing stages" of work on the album they were recording before Strummer's sudden death in December. Writing on Strummer's official Web site, the group said, "We're at the finishing stages really. Any overdubs that need doing, any backing vocals that need doing, any bits of anything in any of the tracks that need doing to kinda finish it off. That's the hardest bit really, because up until now we were just putting stuff down to see what works. Now we've got to decide what works and what doesn't."

Eleven tracks will likely make the final cut, including "The Road to Rock'N'Roll," which Strummer had written for inclusion on a Johnny Cash album, as well as another tune written with producer/multi-instrumentalist Danny Saber. The Mescaleros may also include an instrumental titled "Midnight Jam": "The four of us just got in there, jammed, slowed the bass down and just dubbed around it, without changing anything. We'd really like it to go on."

As for the album's release date, which was previously tipped for May, the group says, "We don't know when it will be out, but we hope to finish it within the next six weeks -- mid March. We've just been left to get to it, which is great for us."

As previously reported, Strummer's legacy in the Clash will be celebrated with the double-disc set "Essential Clash," due March 11 from Epic/Legacy.