When we last checked in with the Black Lips, they were hopeful to work with producer Mark Ronson again on their follow up to 2011’s Arabia Mountain. Since then, they’ve written their first batch of songs and drafted a wish list of contributors. “We’re still figuring out scheduling but we just sent [Ronson] our first demos before we got on the ship,” lead singer and guitarist Cole Alexander told Hive earlier this month aboard the S.S. Coachella. The Atlanta, Ga. band’s currently-untitled, forthcoming album will be a lo-fi nod to their Southern roots. “We’ve messed with country before but we have a Southern rock song that we’re tentatively calling “Drive, Drive Buddy,” that sounds like if Lynyrd Skynyrd was an indie twee band,” Cole continued. “We have another song that’s country, garage rock called “Wild Boys in the Woods.”
While the Black Lips aren’t going to totally overhaul their sound, there’s a chance they’ll dabble in another one of their hometown’s genres: “We’re also hoping to do a rap song -- it would probably be me rapping, and we talked to Killer Mike on the boat about doing a remix and he seemed open -- and want to get some guest features,” Cole revealed. They’ve already secured Brent Hinds from Mastodon to play banjo on their new record. “He’s a really great banjo player and I thought that would help the Southern aspect,” Cole added. “Maybe Bradford Cox will come on and do something. It’s hypothetical right now but I’m optimistic.”
The Black Lips are also upbeat that their next full-length will yield a hit. “I want this next record to be our biggest breakthrough,” Cole said. “Having worked with Mark Ronson, the potential is there and I think I understand what it takes to have a hit song. This is the last record we have for Vice on our contract so we really want to take it to the next level.” Following their appearance at S.S. Coachella, the band is heading into the studio this spring and aiming for a winter release.