ZZ Top’s Billy F. Gibbons says the Texan trio plan to release their first studio album since 2003’s Mescalero before the end of 2011.
“This year’s going to be a banner year on a number of levels, but we’re throwing our hat in the ring,” Gibbons told Houston’s Fox 26, shortly before leaving for the band’s summer European tour.
Gibbons confirmed that producer Rick Rubin was on board for the as-yet-untitled album, which has now “finished tracking” and awaits mixing.
“Rick has successfully brought in his particular piece of magic in offering a few suggestions,” Gibbons said. “Basically he stepped back and said, ‘You don’t have to get much better, just do what you do.’ So that’s what we’ve been up to.” Gibbons also mentioned that tracks so far recorded are “loud and fast” and “a return to the roots.”
“There’s always that Tex-Mex accompaniment,” Gibbons added. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we lean that direction again.”