Van Halen was one of the biggest bands of the ’80s, and while drugs, alcohol, and tension within the band caused too many problems for them to continue on that path, the original members still have creative love for one another. Now, they’re working on new music together, and frontman David Lee Roth says we can expect new music in about a year and a half.
“I was up at (guitarist) Edward (Van Halen)’s house, maybe three days ago – just before I came here to the city – and we’re starting to put music together,” Roth said in an interview on Sirius XM. “Not to give away exactly what the package will be, it’s gonna be about 18 months, I think.”
The reason it will take so long, Roth says, is because the band has a hand in every single aspect of a new album, and it’s the same way with shows. While he admits it can be a drawn out task, Roth says that’s just their creative process.
“We start way, way, way in advance, ’cause we are eminently art-centric, which is a really fancy way of saying we really do generate all the artwork, the graphics, etc. We don’t hire out and have somebody design a bunch of album covers for us and then choose…. we start from scratch ourselves. Same thing with the merchandise – if you buy a t-shirt, that was designed, literally, in my living room. On and on… stage design, lighting rig, putting the show together – it takes about a year and a half, 18 months, because any idea that you have is 85 phone calls.”
Roth’s last project with the band–the 2012 album A Different Kind Of Truth–was a critical success, a wonder considering the group spent two decades mostly apart, with Roth joining them in 1996 to great fanfare only to fall out with them when Gary Cherone was chosen over him to sing lead vocals.