In a new interview with the "Behind The Vinyl" podcast, EUROPE singer Joey Tempest spoke about the band's plans for the long-awaited follow-up to 2017's "Walk The Earth" album. He said (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "What we're gonna do is we're gonna start recording next year, together with a documentary we hope [to have] out in the autumn — a EUROPE documentary [and] a box set, hopefully, of all the albums. But definitely a 40th-anniversary tour [for the first EUROPE album]. We don't feel like we wanna compete too much without a new album, so what we're gonna do is we want to record new music and release one or two [pieces] of new music next year, and then will be the big release the following year. That's at least what we're planning right now. 'Cause there's so much going on next year. And [we want to] focus on the documentary and the 40th-anniversary tour and some other things."
Asked if the box set will contain any previously unreleased material, Joey said: "We haven't gotten that far, because the thing with EUROPE is we don't have that much extra stuff. Some bands have loads. Of course we can [include] live stuff — we can do that — but from the studio, there's not much. We've been boring like that. We come in with 12 songs and we come out with 12 songs. How did that happen? We should have 20 and taken 10 and kept 10. So, whether there's gonna be new songs involved in that, I don't think so. But the box set will a great vinyl box set with all the records, hopefully. Whether we put something else in there, we have to talk about it.
This past July, EUROPE guitarist John Norum told Sonic Perspectives that the band would begin recording a new LP in 2023. "All the guys are, at the moment, just writing songs and putting ideas down," he said. "I started preparing and doing demos and things like that."
Back in July 2019, Tempest told Finland's Kaaos TV that he and his bandmates don't "write so much on the road". He explained: "We've never been like that. We're a soundcheck band as well. So we always soundcheck. We soundcheck whenever we can. Festivals is more difficult, as you know. But it's possible sometimes — you can go in the morning and do it.
"What happens to us is usually we write for six months when the touring has come to an end on an album," he continued. "So it takes us about four to six months to write, to get everything together, get 75 to 80 percent ready, music and lyrics. Then we go into the studio and then we work fast — record everything live in two weeks. This is how we've done it on 'Bag Of Bones' , 'War Of Kings'  and 'Walk The Earth'. The last three EUROPE albums were recorded fast, because those fast decisions are amazing in the studio — everybody's there; everybody's on fire. That's how those great albums were made in the '70s — on the spot, when that glow and that fire is there."
While stressing the importance of improvisation in the studio, Tempest said that "you should be prepared. You don't wanna waste time in the studio and waste anybody's time. So if you're 75 percent ready, the last bit the producer can help out with or the circumstances, or whatever happens happens in the studio. But we've been so lucky working with Dave Cobb — a great musician and producer and a great guy to just hang with. He's now part of the band. Like he works with RIVAL SONS, he also works with us. He's part of the band when we're in the studio with him. He writes with us. He comes up with great ideas. He sits and plays the songs with us in a circle in the studio before we record it, and then we just slam it down live, three or four takes, and pick the best takes to work on and to finish up. And the nerve is there, the decisions were made right there, and that's how you make great rock records."
"Walk The Earth" was released in October 2017 via Hell & Back Recordings (Silver Lining Music). It was recorded at famed Abbey Road Studios in London with the aforementioned Grammy Award-winning producer Dave Cobb (RIVAL SONS, Shooter Jennings, Jason Isbell, Chris Stapleton).