MEGADETH bassist David Ellefson will travel to Nashville, Tennessee later this week to begin recording the band's 16th studio album.
Ellefson discussed MEGADETH's plans for the follow-up to 2016's "Dystopia" in a brand new interview with "The Rock N Ragni Show".
Speaking about how he is spending his time while social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic, Ellefson said (hear audio below): "I'm actually just now working on some MEGADETH songs to go and record. I'm gonna be going to Nashville later this week to get started recording the MEGADETH album."
Ellefson also talked about the status of MEGADETH's previously announced North American tour with LAMB OF GOD, TRIVIUM and IN FLAMES. The 55-date trek is currently scheduled to be split into two legs. The first leg of the tour is supposed to kick off June 12 at Jiffy Lube Live in Bristow, Virginia, and wrap August 1 at the Concord Pavilion in Concord, California. The second run is slated to launch October 2 at iTHINK Financial Amphitheater in West Palm Beach, Florida, and run through November 13 at the Reno Events Center in Reno, Nevada.
Asked if the tour is still a go, Ellefson responded: "We'll find out in a couple of days. First, we waited as long as possibly could. Whatever's gonna happen, we're gonna make the announcements from the MEGADETH social media — in the next day, actually.
"The truth of it is there's more to it than just us," he explained. "Of course, the four of us, we're always ready to get out of the house and go thrash and rock with our fans. But the promoter, Live Nation, even they can't unilaterally make the decision 'cause some of the states are shut down, there are cities that are shut down, and it's pretty rough to have a tour right now."
The early sessions for MEGADETH's new LP took place last year with co-producer Chris Rakestraw, who previously worked on "Dystopia".
MEGADETH's new effort will be the first to feature drummer Dirk Verbeuren (ex-SOILWORK), who joined the band almost four years ago.
Late last year, MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine teased songs that were "heavy as hell" with titles such as "Rattlehead Part Two" and "The Dogs Of Chernobyl".
Guitarist Kiko Loureiro made his recording debut with MEGADETH on "Dystopia", whose title track was honored in the "Best Metal Performance" category at the 2017 Grammy Awards.