KILLSWITCH ENGAGE guitarist Joel Stroetzel spoke to Rocked at last weekend's Welcome To Rockville festival about the progress of the recording sessions for the band's follow-up to 2016's "Incarnate" album.
"At this point, the record is finished and we have delivered it to Metal Blade," he said (see video below). "We're hoping to get it out in the summer or fall, something like that. We haven't quite gotten a release date yet.
"We're psyched to get the record out, 'cause we've been working on it for a year a half," he added.
Asked why it took so long to get the new album completed, Joel said: "It's kind of weird, 'cause we all wrote separately. We all live all over the place in the States now, and we ended up coming up with way too many songs — I don't even know how many songs; close to 20. And we just handed them [over to singer Jesse Leach]: 'Hey, Jesse, here you go. We need some lyrics.' But, yeah, it was a lot at once. It took a while to figure out which ones were gonna resonate with us. But I think in the end we finally got it figured out. It took about a year to figure it out, though. Better late than never, man."
KILLSWITCH ENGAGE's new disc will be released via Metal Blade Records in the U.S. and Sony Music Entertainment in the rest of the world. The effort will feature a guest appearance on one song by the band's former lead singer Howard Jones. It will mark the band's third full-length release since the return of Leach, who rejoined the group in 2012.
Leach recently said that the making of KILLSWITCH ENGAGE's upcoming LP was "the single hardest process I've ever had to deal with, far beyond any album I've done, hands down. The sheer amount of material, my vocal surgery, depression, anxiety and full-on mental breakdowns all contributed to the painstaking process."
As for the musical direction of the new record, Leach said: "I believe the album has something for everyone who is a fan or digs what KILLSWITCH is known for. I personally leaned a bit more on the heavier side of things, but we'll see what makes the album when all is said and done."
Leach appeared on KILLSWITCH's self-titled debut and sophomore album, "Alive Or Just Breathing", before exiting the band. Jones took over on vocals for "The End Of Heartache", "As Daylight Dies" and the 2009 self-titled set before being dismissed from the group seven years ago.
"Incarnate" debuted at No. 6 on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 35,000 equivalent album units. In terms of pure album sales, it opened with 33,000 copies.
KILLSWITCH ENGAGE's last release was the "Beyond The Flames: Home Video Part II" two-disc, Blu-ray and CD package.
The American leg of KILLSWITCH ENGAGE's "Collapse The World" co-headlining tour with PARKWAY DRIVE kicked off on April 18 in San Francisco.