When you have a smash single like AWOLNATION's "Sail," a lot of options become available.
"There are a couple of people I have up my sleeve," frontman Aaron Bruno tells Rolling Stone about who he's working with on the band's next album. "There are a couple of massive surprises that could happen." Though he is initially reluctant to divulge names, he does give an obvious clue: "I can say, 'Don't Stop Believing.'"
He's talking about former Journey frontman Steve Perry, who hasn't appeared on a record since the mid-2000s. "We became friends," he explains. "It feels weird for me to talk about – I feel like I'm bragging about how this legend likes the music I've written. But he asked for my number. He reached out to me."
The follow-up to the band's breakthrough debut, Megalithic Symphony, is taking shape as a much more introspective collection of songs. "The first record was really about more world issues and the discovery of the reality of how stuff works and how we are as humans," he says. "But this one seems to be a little bit more reflective, more about human relationships."
Bruno says he has nine songs done already, including "Kooks Everywhere!!!" and "Hollow Moon." "I got a lot of music in me," he says. "We were touring for three years, so I had a lot of time to spend alone on that bus and think about the way I wanted to make the record and grow, hopefully, into another dimension. I'd like to push myself and get better."