Creed are simultaneously looking back and ahead these days. While the band is hitting the road April 13th in Chicago for a month-long tour that will find them playing their first two albums, My Own Prison and Human Clay, from start to finish, the band is also well into working on a new album, their first since 2009's Full Circle.
"We spent about three to four weeks together jamming and writing new material," frontman Scott Stapp tells Rolling Stone. "We feel five [new songs] have the symmetry and continuity within themselves and will make the record. So if you want to look at it from that perspective, we’re halfway there."
Right now there is no timeline for the record, though Stapp says, "We could begin tracking as soon as March, and [if that happens] of course we’ll have a record out this summer." Regardless, the whole band is in agreement that the top priority is making the best record they can. "We’re gonna continue to write until we feel we have the strongest, best album we’ve ever done. That’s our goal. If it takes all year to do that and the album doesn’t come out until next year, then so be it."
Given their excitement about the new record, is there a chance the band could preview some new material on the upcoming tour? "We would love to. If we get it where it needs to be, we'll definitely play it," guitarist Mark Tremonti says.
Tremonti agrees with Stapp's assessment that they have about five tracks locked in to make the record. "There's two that you might hear on the radio," he says. "There's one heavier, high-energy type of tune. And there's kind of a moodier, slower, longer finger-picked song, like 'Faceless Man.' It's kind of all over the place, but we're very happy with what we've got so far."
There will also be some clues to the new album in the older material when the band revisits the first two albums on their upcoming tour. "It just reminds you to not overcomplicate things," Tremonti says. "We'll stick to making a record formed around these big melodies that I think were always kind of the essence of the band."
Adds Stapp: "As we’re going through this material, jamming and stuff, I think it brings back the memories of how things were before the success – our relationships and how we looked at what to do, an appreciation for it all. It’s definitely rubbing off on the new music."