Platinum-selling punk act the Offspring plans to begin work next month on the follow up to 2000's "Conspiracy of One," with eyes on a spring release through Columbia. Producer Brendan O'Brien, who man

Platinum-selling punk act the Offspring plans to begin work next month on the follow up to 2000's "Conspiracy of One," with eyes on a spring release through Columbia. Producer Brendan O'Brien, who manned the boards on the Orange County, Calif.-based group's last album, will again fill that role for the band's seventh disc -- if frontman Brian "Dexter" Holland gets his way.

"It would be great if Brendan could do it, but I wouldn't want to say that for sure until he says he's going to do it," Holland says on the band's official Web site. "But that's a good possibility and we may be getting started before Christmas. And so for now, we are looking at maybe a release early next year."

The Offspring already have a number of working titles demoed, including "Never Gonna Find Me," "Pass Me By," and "Worst Hangover Ever," according to the site. While most are not fully completed, Holland reports, "Over the next few weeks I'm gonna take these demos and I'm gonna see if I can finish them."

One track will even feature a chorus sung by attendees of this year's Reading Festival. "I wanted [the song] to sound really big," says Holland. "We thought that since we were doing these festivals in England that we could actually ask the crowd to do the part. So when we were in Reading, I actually stopped the set and said, 'You guys wanna sing on our new record?' There were like 60,000 people who sang that part." Another song, currently titled "Give It Up," is "about a jerk who is all into himself and thinks all the girls want him," says Holland.

Holland is also looking forward to an ensuing tour following the project's completion. "As soon as the record comes out, [we] are gone, playing shows and touring," he says. "And that is cool, it's fun, and that's what it is all about."

As for the creative process, Holland recently rented a house for a month in San Clemente, Calif., for the purpose of songwriting and surfing. He came away with three new tunes and says, "Everyone writes songs in different ways and I write songs not by sitting down and playing guitar so much, but by thinking about stuff and getting away and driving or something."

In the meantime, look for the group's cover of the Ramones' "I Wanna Be Sedated" on the upcoming tribute album "We're a Happy Family," due Dec. 24 from DV8/Columbia after myriad release date changes.

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