With the exception of short “making the album” videos posted online, you don’t often get a chance to see bands recording new albums. Last week, Clutch gave a handful of media outlets, radio stations, and label peeps a chance to check out some songs from their forthcoming album Earth Rocker, which they’re currently wrapping up recording at the Machine Shop in Belleville NJ. Instead of merely playing the songs back for the assembled guests, the band actually ripped through a six-song set from the album, which is coming out next year.
Working with producer Machine for the first time since 2004’s Blast Tyrant, the six songs we heard share the DNA of that album. The songs previewed were upbeat, heavier and concise, yet still had the blues roots of Strange Cousins From the West and From Beale Street to Oblivion. And considering that anytime Clutch comes to town, it’s at least in front of 1,200 people, it felt intimate to hear the band tear through songs mere feet away. The band had been playing several of the new songs (the title track and “Crucial Velocity” among others) live before they headed into the studio, and we’re psyched to say that from what we heard, there’s plenty more where that came from. Earth Rocker is tentatively scheduled for March of next year.