Goo Goo Dolls working on album


DETROIT -- The Goo Goo Dolls plan to take a stripped-down approach to their next album, which frontman John Rzeznik hopes to have out in the fourth quarter of this year.

"We're really more of a rock band, which is kind of the approach that we're taking with the new album," Rzeznik said. "That means all of us playing live in the studio and kind of under-producing it."

Rzeznik said he has about 25 ideas for the group's follow-up to 2006's "Let Love In" -- as well as a pair of retrospectives -- though he acknowledges that there are "four, maybe five keepers right now." Writing began in earnest in late February, with Rzeznik working both at home and in the studio the group recently completed in Buffalo, N.Y.

"At this point I want to keep it real basic so that the songwriting structure is real strong and the melodies and hooks are really good," he said, "and then we'll let a producer come in and put his flair on it."

But Rzeznik has requirements for whomever the Goos work with this time. "I think the most important thing when we go in to actually track the album is that the four of us are playing live together," he said of touring guitarist Brad Fernquist, bassist Robby Takac and drummer Mike Malinin. "We want to get the basic groove of what it's all about instead of having this real sterilized, ProTooled, chopped-to-bits kind of thing."

Rzeznik said that even though the building of the group's studio was arduous, the Goos are enjoying having a dedicated workspace. "I can't deny the fact that I'm like, 'Wow, this is ours. We don't have to pay somebody else for it,'" he said. "We're still shelling out money every day to keep it open, but at least it's ours."

The flip side, he adds, is the temptation to spend more time making the album since there's no clock ticking. "You can get caught up in the experimentation," Rzeznik said, "Like, 'I can plug this into that into that and get this sound no one's ever heard before.' But does anybody want to hear it? That's always the question."

While the Goos are working, fans will be sated with the group's "Greatest Hits Volume Two," a rarities-filled CD and DVD set due out June 17 via Warner Bros.