Steely Dan hasn't released a new album since 2003's Everything Must Go but during a recent conference call the duo hinted that a new project may be on the way. The group's Walter Becker told Billboard,"It's in the air, it really ii . . . It's just a smell now. The next thing is then you taste it, then you start to feel it. You know how this goes."
Donald Fagen explained that the group does have "some songs, these really good ones that we only half-finished back in, like, 1984 that we keep threatening to work on."
But Becker was quick to point out, "We did finish a couple of those. We have a bunch of things. Put it this way . . . any other band in the world would have finished or mixed these old things that were lying around and issued them with a great ta-da fanfare. But we just don't. We don't play it like that, necessarily. It's not the way we roll."
There is one major stumbling block to the group putting out a new album. They're committed to tour until the end of October and they haven't historically been able to create while on the road. Fagen explained, "I have a really hard time writing on the road . . . Usually writing is done, whether with Walter or not, it's when I'm really at home and have very little to do. You need to be in a kind of stasis, I think, to do that . . . or else you're just sleeping. Actually, the time you could be writing songs you're probably sleeping, on the road."
Fagen released a solo project titled, Sunken Condos, last year and in the past he explained how his solo material is different from the group's material. He said: "It's, you know, mainly just the idea that, you know, I don't have a collaborator when I'm writing, so, you know, I do them by myself. And generally speaking, so I think the songs are more subjective and personal."
Photo Courtesy of Danny Clinch