DEATH ANGEL Is 'Slowly' Working On New Album: The Songs Are 'All In The Infancy Stages'
July 30, 2023
In a new interview with Vikram Chandrasekar of Tales From The Road, DEATH ANGEL guitarist Ted Aguilar spoke about the progress of the songwriting sessions for the band's next studio album. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "[We're] slowly working on it. I'll, I'll say we have some [song] skeletons. They've still gotta be worked on. There's stuff there. We've just gotta work on 'em more and write more. But, of course, there's gonna be a new DEATH ANGEL album, but when? I don't wanna say it's gonna be next year 'cause you can't really predict the future. I could tell you, 'We're gonna record in April,' but something might come up where we go, 'Oh, that's a good tour. We might as well just hold off.' Until we're kind of definite and there's a date locked and we have no activity and we're going in at this time, then I could tell you a set date. But, yeah, there will be a new record. We just don't know when we're gonna start recording. And we do have some songs, but we wanna write some more. But they're all in the infancy stages."
He continued: "Ever since post-COVID, we did some touring and things have changed. So we have some stuff till the end of the year and we don't know what's going on for next year. Right now we wanna get as much touring, 'cause I don't think our latest album, 'Humanicide', didn't get enough touring behind it, and we wanna do more of it, write music and record. But we'll see what happens. Can't predict the future."
Ted also spoke in detail about the DEATH ANGEL songwriting process, saying: "Well, when it comes down to writing, it's all Rob [Cavestany, guitar]. It's all Rob. It starts with him. He comes up with a basic structure and him and Will [Carroll, drums] get together and they hash it all out and they record it. And when they get it to a point where, 'Oh, yeah, this is great,' then they send it off to everyone else. And Damien [Sisson, bass] does his parts and Mark [Osegueda, vocals] will listen to it and try to write lyrics and melodies. And I'll listen to it and I'll touch base with Rob: 'What do you want me to do here? Do you want me to play something here? Or do you want me to do something different?' 'Cause Rob has a vision and you kind of wanna see his vision. And as soon as the song comes together to where we play it quite a few times, then we could throw in our ideas, like, 'Hey, maybe that part should be a little longer,' or, 'Maybe cut that out,' or Will will go, 'I wanna do something different here instead.' So, you know, Rob has a vision, we listen, we play along with it. Then if we feel like there needs to be changes, we express our concern, and Rob is really good at, 'Yeah, let's give it a try.' So we try everything. And it comes down to, 'All right, this is what works.' So it starts with Rob. And with regarding the lyrics, every now and then Rob will pick out a song: 'I wanna write lyrics for this song.' And Mark goes, 'Go ahead.' But Mark writes all the lyrics, and what he does is with the music, he'll listen to it over and over by himself. I don't know where he goes. He goes into the far corners of the earth by himself, with the headphones and music, and he'll come up with so many types of different melodies and stuff, and then come up with the ones he's happy with and lay it down on the demo form. Then when we get into the real studio, then things start to evolve 'cause we've played it so many times or we listened to it so many times that when we get in there, [we go], 'All right, let's try this.' It's always evolving to the point where it's handing it in to get mastered. Some songs stay kind of the same from what it was, but we just put more energy into it. Some songs have been rewritten quite a few times, so it differs. Rob's the songwriter, and on the last album I wrote one song. Yeah, it's how it is. And right now I'm writing some stuff, and how it goes is I'll write some stuff, I'll send it to Rob. I always tell him, 'If it's good, use it. If not, if you find parts are good, use it. If it's not good, it's okay, dude.' I'm just throwing some stuff out there, 'cause he knows what the DEATH ANGEL sound should be. And if he likes it, he'll use it. If he doesn't, my feelings are not broken."
DEATH ANGEL released a new live album titled "The Bastard Tracks" in November 2021 via Nuclear Blast. Recorded live at The Great American Music Hall in their hometown of San Francisco on May 22, 2021, and streamed live soon after, "The Bastard Tracks" was described in a press release as "a deep-cuts collection of rarely and never performed songs from the band's catalog" that was released digitally and on CD, vinyl and Blu-ray.
In October 2020, DEATH ANGEL released a four-song EP, "Under Pressure". The effort included a cover of QUEEN + David Bowie's "Under Pressure", followed by a new track titled "Faded Remains", plus acoustic versions of "Act III"'s classic "A Room With A View" and "Humanicide"'s "Revelation Song". The EP was mixed by Max Norman (OZZY OSBOURNE, MEGADETH, BAD COMPANY) and mastered by Ted Jensen (LAMB OF GOD, MACHINE HEAD, HALESTORM).
Released in May 2019 via Nuclear Blast, "Humanicide" saw DEATH ANGEL returning to producer and friend Jason Suecof (DEICIDE, TRIVIUM) of Audiohammer studios for the recording and mixing, along with the mastering of the legendary Ted Jensen (SLIPKNOT, PANTERA) of Sterling Sound, who added the final touches and brought it all to life, with artist Brent Elliott White (LAMB OF GOD, MEGADETH) providing the ominous cover artwork.
In March 2020, Carroll spent almost two weeks on a ventilator in an intensive care unit at a Northern California hospital after being diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus. He first got sick when he and the rest of DEATH ANGEL spent more than a month on the road in Europe with TESTAMENT and EXODUS as part of "The Bay Strikes Back 2020" tour.
DEATH ANGEL was nominated for a Grammy Award for "Best Metal Performance" for the "Humanicide" title track. It was the group's first Grammy nomination.
Carroll joined DEATH ANGEL in 2009 as the replacement for the band's original drummer, Andy Galeon.
Will can be heard on the last four DEATH ANGEL studio albums: "Relentless Retribution" (2010),"The Dream Calls for Blood" (2013),"The Evil Divide" (2016) and the aforementioned "Humanicide".
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