RobertPlant.comRobert Plant says he's well on his way to finishing a new album, the first with his latest group, The Sensational Space Shifters. In a recent interview with U.K. paper The Telegraph, the Led Zeppelin singer reveals that he's completed "12 tracks, 11 originals" for the forthcoming studio effort, which features "no sentimental stuff."
While Plant has strayed during the last several years from the heavy rock for which Zeppelin is known, he credits his old band with helping inspire his recent musical journeys, such as the Americana-flavored albums he recorded with Alison Krauss and The Band of Joy.
"The events between 1968 and 1980 were the kind of cornerstone for everything I've been able to do," he explains. "They gave me the springboard. All I'm doing is using the same amount of license, with different people, to what we did in 1969."
In turn, Plant suggests that his recent blues- and folk-influenced projects have help him recapture some of the vocal power that awed fans back in Zeppelin's heyday. "The great thing about the adventures with Alison, and singing with [Band of Joy's] Patty [Griffin] and Buddy [Miller], was that I started singing differently," he maintains. "Somebody said to me [during a recent London concert], 'You had your big voice back.'"
He adds, "It was good to get it out again. It's all the same, really, you just have to use the right colors for the right picture."
With The Sensational Space Shifters, Plant seems to be combining all his musical influences into one eclectic sonic stew. The band -- which includes Griffin, members of Plant's early 2000s outfit The Strange Sensation and Gambian multi-instrumentalist Juldeh Camara -- blends elements of hard rock, psychedelia, blues, American and British folk, Middle Eastern and African music.
The group has just announced a series of South American tour dates the run from an October 18 concert in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, through a November 9 show in Lima, Peru.
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