‘We still enjoy what we do’: David Lee Roth confirms work on new Van Halen album

David Lee Roth estimates that the newly reunited Van Halen could be finished writing a new studio album in 18 months, with another tour to follow.

“I’m writing; I write lyrics routinely,” Roth tells Jim Florentine. “And the band plays together routinely — at least three times as week. They’re up at Ed’s place, routinely.”

This flurry of activity follows a stretch of some 27 years between studio efforts for Roth, Eddie and Alex Van Halen. Roth split after the blockbuster 1984, establishing a solo career that began with red-hot propulsion only to cool down. By 2007, he was back in the Van Halen fold — though Michael Anthony had been replaced on bass by Eddie’s son Wolfgang.

Still, it took another four-plus years for the revamped Van Halen to start work on a new album. A Different Kind of Truth arrived on February 2012, bolstered with updates of leftover demos from Roth’s initial tenure in the group.

Roth says the group never stopped working regularly, both together and apart, since the tour in support of A Different Kind of Truth drew to a close. That’s why a new Van Halen album looks to arrive much, much more quickly than the last.

“I think we’re one of the few acts, at our age and in our position in the music industry, who still enjoy doing what we do,” Roth adds. “Everybody will tell you that they live and breathe and die to play their drum sets, and they are lying. (Laughs.) Mostly, you get in a point in your life where you have been playing for how many years, how many decades, and you probably don’t play it on the weekend. This is where Van Halen in the anamoly, or the abberation. We still enjoy what we do for a living.”


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