Prepare for a musical storm as Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready spills the beans on the band’s upcoming album, promising an unexpected heaviness that will leave fans on the edge of their seats. In a recent interview with Classic Rock, the acclaimed guitarist provided insights into the in-progress record, the highly anticipated successor to 2020’s ‘Gigaton.’
“I’m hoping it’s gonna come out [in 2024],” McCready shared, hinting at the imminent arrival of a sonic powerhouse. Detailing the collaborative effort, he revealed the band’s partnership with Andrew Watt, a younger producer known for his pop collaborations with artists like Miley Cyrus and Post Malone but with a rock heart. According to McCready, Watt’s passion for Pearl Jam inspired the band to deliver a performance that surpassed expectations.
“He really kicked our asses, got us focused and playing, song after song,” McCready exclaimed. The guitarist went on to highlight the unexpected nature of the album’s sound, stating, “It’s a lot heavier than you’d expect. There’s the melody and energy of the first couple of records.” Drawing parallels to the band’s early work, McCready credited Watt for pushing them to channel their signature hard-hitting, melodic, and thoughtful style.
A tantalizing promise for fans comes in the form of McCready’s enhanced lead guitar presence. “For better or worse, you’re gonna hear a lot more lead guitar from me, stuff I haven’t done in a long time,” he confessed. Reflecting on the creative process, McCready likened the experience to the lightning-in-a-bottle magic he captured with Chris Cornell and Temple of the Dog on ‘Reach Down’ years ago.
With the prospect of intensified guitar solos and a rejuvenated musical spirit, Pearl Jam’s forthcoming album, guided by the masterful hands of Mike McCready and the collaborative genius of Andrew Watt, is poised to be a sonic journey that defies expectations and solidifies the band’s legacy in the realm of rock.