Taproot Begins Work On Next 'Gift'

Modern rock quartet Taproot has begun work on its sophomore album for Velvet Hammer/Atlantic. The as-yet-untitled set is expected in late summer and will be produced by Toby Wright (Alice In Chains, K

Modern rock quartet Taproot has begun work on its sophomore album for Velvet Hammer/Atlantic. The as-yet-untitled set is expected in late summer and will be produced by Toby Wright (Alice In Chains, Kiss, Metallica). It's the follow-up to 2000's "Gift," which peaked at No. 6 on Billboard's Heatseekers chart and has sold 208,000 units in the U.S., according to SoundScan.

"This new record is inspired by all the time we spent on the road," lead singer/guitarist Stephen Richards said in a statement. "The songs deal with long-distance relationships, and the fans we met out there. We love recording, but making records for us is all about getting the chance to go back out on the road."

"I hope people will be able to see a lot of growth in our ideas: a little progressive, a little more dark for some, a little more happy for others," bassist Phil Lipscomb said in a recent online chat on the group's official Web site. "Our songwriting itself has become more fluent, and lyrically, [there is] a little more reflection on Steve's whole life rather than on smaller parts."

The group's site is hosting regular audio updates from the band in the studio, with a "studio cam" feature set to go online in the coming days.