Fans can watch for new material when The Prodigy kick off their 11-city mini-tour of North America tonight in Washington, DC, (see Prodigy To Play Beirut, Will Return To U.S. In June for tour dates) but they shouldn't be holding their collective breaths for a new album anytime soon. According to the L.A. Times, it's taken longer than expected for creative leader Liam Howlett to set up a studio in his new house, so he's a long way from even starting the record.
Traditionally, Howlett has written one key piece of music to inspire him to start the process, then mapped out the rest of the project based on that inspiration. Apparently, the key tune for the next record has so far remained elusive. According to British press sources, Howlett has written five or so songs that have yet to be recorded, but the reports say they're more likely to be released on EP's later this year, not on a new album.
interview also covers the so-called Madonna snub. The diva was miffed that the band, which is signed to her Maverick label, declined her invitation to contribute on the production end of her latest album, telling the Times that they "turned their elitist noses" up at her, saying, "Oh, we can't work with you. You're a big pop star." Howlett told the Times that he refused the request because it would send the wrong message to Prodigy fans. "It might make people think we were selling out, or trying to be big pop stars," says Howlett.
The Times reports that the band expects to play a few new tracks on their pending tour, some old favorites possibly incuding new remixes of "Voodoo People" and "Serial Thrilla," and most likely their controversial hit, "Smack My Bitch Up."