QUEENSRŸCHE singer Todd La Torre spoke to Canada’s The Metal Voice about the progress of the songwriting sessions for the follow-up to 2019’s “The Verdict” album. The group’s next disc will apparently mark the QUEENSRŸCHE recording debut of Casey Grillo who replaced original drummer Scott Rockenfield in 2017.

Michael [Wilton, guitar] flew down [to my house in Florida] recently — a week or two ago — and Zeuss [producer Chris Harris] came down [as well],” Todd said (see video below). “And then Casey [Grillo, drums] lives here, so he was coming over every day. We recorded 14, 15 new song ideas. And then Michael‘s coming back down again in, like, a month or so. So we’re writing new QUEENSRŸCHE stuff. And Zeuss is recording it in real time, as we are in a room coming up with fresh ideas on the fly. Eddie [Jackson, bass] and Parker [Lundgren, guitar], they may come down. It depends. Parker‘s slammed with his guitar shop — he has a shop called Diablo Guitars, and he’s just exploding; things are going great for him. And Eddie‘s songwriting at home, and he doesn’t feel safe traveling right now. So that’s why he didn’t come down. And I said, ‘Dude, I totally respect it and I get it.’ Absolutely.”

Asked about the possibility of QUEENSRŸCHE releasing a live album from his time with the band, Todd said: “We have tons of multi-track recordings from two years of live shows. And I told Eddie, ‘I think Michael has the hard drives. Why don’t we divvy up, send hard drives to each of us, and we’ll pick three songs — each guy picks three songs. ‘Cause you’ve got two thousand things to go through, and I’ll pick three songs, and I’ll just find the best live performances from those three songs, and maybe we can assemble 15 songs, or something, for a live record. That’s something we are talking about. I guess he’s been listening to songs and sifting through some of that material from live performances.”

Earlier this month, Rockenfield shot down suggestions that he quit QUEENSRŸCHE or retired from playing music. The drummer, who hasn’t performed with QUEENSRŸCHE in four years, took to his Facebook page to say that fans “have not been given the facts by any means” and implied that he would offer more details at a later date.

Scott‘s comments marked the first time he has publicly addressed his status with QUEENSRŸCHE, which has used former KAMELOT drummer Grillo for touring purposes since April 2017.

When Rockenfield‘s absence from QUEENSRŸCHE was first announced, it was reported that he was taking time off from the band’s touring activities to spend time with his young son, who was born in early 2017.

The drum tracks on “The Verdict”, were laid down by La Torre.

La Torre will release his debut solo album, “Rejoice In The Suffering”, on February 5 via Rat Pak Records.