Guitarist Javier Reyes of instrumental prog metal masters Animals as Leaders has officially announced that the band's new album will drop sometime around spring.
As Reyes told Loud magazine, the trio is quite busy tracking the follow-up to 2011's "Weightless." The guitarist also seemed excited about the new approach, confirming a "new technique" and "real drums," something the band's hadn't used in the past.
"Things are good, most of the writing process is pretty much done and we're just tracking some now," Javier kicked off. "Hopefully we'll have a mixed and mastered album by Christmas and New Year's, that's the plan as of now. It's pretty good, we're pretty happy with it. I think there's a good variety of stuff.
"There are definitely sounds from the first album, there's a lot of new stuff as well," the guitarist continued. "There's a new technique we're doing, even some acoustic guitar stuff. We're going to have real drums that we haven't had in the past, so I think overall people are going to be as stoked as we are."
Confirming both melodic and riff-heavy material, Reyes summed it all up, saying, "Overall, it's a heavy, heavy album. We're hoping to release it by early spring, so maybe like April-ish, ideally."
The axeman then focused on the issues regarding the approach of trying out new material during live shows these days. "Usually it's like, you know, the guy was standing right in front of the biggest speaker in the venue, at some weird angle, and as soon as he's done videotaping he's uploading it," Javier said. "Doesn't even listen to it, and you go watch it online and it’s just distorted and sounds horrible, and it's like, 'Okay, that's the experience to the world, what the new Animals as Leaders sounds like.'"
Finally, Reyes discussed the writing process in detail, categorically ruling out the jam session approach. "Considering the level of intricate parts and the weird odd meter stuff, to teach that in a jam session environment, sometimes you spend hours just doing it," he said. "A lot of the times if there's some crazy rhythm or some crazy technique, each of us has to go and sit on it for like a day before we're ready to play it along with everybody.
"When I was learning some of the slapping stuff, I literally had to start practicing the slapping maybe like a year before we started playing any of these songs, just because I knew, 'Okay, I'm going to have to know this technique in order to play these songs.' So yeah, jamming and writing in that way wouldn't necessarily work for us. It hasn't worked for us; we see it as just more practical and efficient to run everything on a computer and learn everything afterwards."
As the band's sophomore studio effort, "Weightless" saw its release in November 2011 via Prosthetic Records.