QUEENSRŸCHE's MICHAEL WILTON Says His Solo Album Is 'About Halfway Done'

November 7, 2023

During an appearance on today's episode of SiriusXM's "Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk", QUEENSRŸCHE guitarist Michael "Whip" Wilton was asked if he is involved in any outside music projects away from his main band. He responded (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "Yeah, I've got a project that's gonna come out, hopefully, maybe the end of this year or the beginning of next year. And it's just hard rock music, nothing QUEENSRŸCHE progressive or anything like that." Asked by host Eddie Trunk if it will be released under Wilton's own name, Michael responded: "Yeah." Pressed to clarify that it's "basically a solo record," Wilton said: "Yeah." Asked if he is singing on it, Wilton said: "No, I've got a bunch of guys from Seattle."

According to Michael, his solo record is "about halfway done" with a projected release date of "six months or so" from now.

"I'm just constantly keeping myself busy," Wilton explained. "But when the Whip album comes out, I'll come on and I'll do an interview for you."

Asked if it is going to be called the "Whip" album, Michael said: "We'll see."

Around two decades ago, Wilton launched a side project called SOULBENDER. SOULBENDER's self-titled debut album was released independently in 2004. A follow-up effort, simply titled "Soulbender II", came out in September 2014 via Rat Pak Records. The disc contained four all-new songs as well as the ten original tracks (remastered) from the first album.

In addition to Wilton, SOULBENDER's lineup featured ex-MY SISTER'S MACHINE singer Nick Pollock, ex-TIN PAN/FALLEN ANGEL guitarist Dave Groves and ex-ASSAULT/FALLEN ANGEL drummer Wes Hallam.

Wilton previously described SOULBENDER as "a very progressive, hard rock band with very intense musicians." He added: "A couple of them are prodigies and it's really been a lot of fun to do."

In early 2024, QUEENSRŸCHE will embark on a North American tour on which it will perform its first two releases — 1983's "Queensrÿche" EP and 1984's "The Warning" album — in their entirety as part of "The Origins Tour".

Launching on March 22, 2024 in Houston, Texas at Hell's Heroes festival and running until May 12 in Ft. Meyers, Florida, "The Origins Tour" will see QUEENSRŸCHE — singer Todd La Torre, guitarists Michael Wilton and Mike Stone, bassist Eddie Jackson and drummer Casey Grillo — joined on most dates by another highly respected/influential band that also launched in the '80s, ARMORED SAINT.

Earlier this year, QUEENSRŸCHE completed its 2023 U.S. headlining tour with support from former MEGADETH guitarist Marty Friedman and TRAUMA. On that tour, QUEENSRŸCHE's 18-song set included no less than five songs from the band's sixteenth studio album, "Digital Noise Alliance", which came out in October 2022 via Century Media. The record was once again helmed by Chris "Zeuss" Harris, who previously worked with QUEENSRŸCHE on 2015's "Condition Hüman" and 2019's "The Verdict" LPs.

For the past six and a half years, Grillo has been filling in for original QUEENSRŸCHE drummer Scott Rockenfield, who stepped away from the band's touring activities in early 2017 to spend time with his young son.

In October 2021, Rockenfield filed a lawsuit against Wilton and Jackson, alleging, among other things, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and wrongful discharge. A few months later, Wilton and Jackson filed a countersuit against Rockenfield, accusing him of abandoning his position as a member of the band and misappropriating the group's assets to his own personal benefit. That dispute is scheduled to go to trial in January 2024.

Photo by Silly Robot Studios

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