Its undeniable that Marty Friedman has been on a roll in 2023. From touring back the US in the spring, to playing again with Megadeth after two decades at the iconic Nippon Budokan venue in Tokyo, to gracing the stage twice at Wacken Open Air Festival – a second time with Megadeth and then with his own solo band – the guy has been all over the place. On top of that, his former bandmate Dave Mustaine recently said that he's been the only ex-Megadeth member that ever had a successful career on his own.
When you think you've heard enough of Friedman for the remainder of 2023, he's just confirmed that his upcoming album of solo material is about 75% complete and is on track for a spring 2024 release.
In a recent interview with Chris Akin Presents, Marty described the upcoming album as ambitious, saying that he is trying to top his previous work. He also said that he is not interested in trying new things for the sake of it, but rather in using his musical vision and sound to create music with deeper emotions and more interesting melodic twists and turns.
"I've been recording my upcoming album for almost a year now. And it's gonna be finished by the end of the year, and it's gonna come out in the spring of 2024. And boy, it's an ambitious one. But, of course, I say that every time. But every time I have to top the one that was before it, so the task keeps getting more and more insane. And right now I would say I'm about 75 percent done with that."
On top of that, Friedman is also working on an autobiography, which is scheduled to be released in 2024. He is also editing an instructional video series for TrueFire, which is said to be the most exhaustive one that the company has ever produced.
"I'm editing my autobiography, which will come out also next year. And also, I just did the most exhaustive instructional video series for TrueFire — the most exhaustive one they've ever done and the most exhaustive one I've ever done by far. It's the deepest dive into just the way I see music, which apparently is not the same as how others see it. Not that it's better or worse, but it's just completely different. So for the first time ever, including any of my other instructional things, for the first time ever, I've really actually worked hard on it and created this thing. And I did it at the end of the tour, the U.S. tour that I did earlier this year, and now it's just about finished. We're just putting the last edits on and just about done with that. So, it's kind of a lot of post-production work at this point."
When asked about the challenges and motivations that keep him pushing forward with his music, Friedman said that he is trying to impress himself with something that he has never done before. He also said that he is motivated by the desire to create music that is more complex, more emotional, and more adventurous.
"I'm not really so much into trying something that I haven't done for the sake of trying something I haven't done. I'm trying to impress me with something that I've never done before. It's not like I'm gonna suddenly wake up one day and say, 'Okay, I'm gonna be a rapper' or something. I do what I do and I have my musical vision and sound. I just try to do deeper things with it.
"I try to make more complex emotions, deeper emotions in the music, more interesting, melodic twists and turns, more adventurous things, things that I wasn't deep enough to do last year or two years ago, or five years ago, things that I couldn't hear back then, things that I can only hear because life has given me more experiences since then, and, of course, more musical experiences, and just to consciously be aware of stuff that I've already done and not repeat it.
"It's a natural challenge that I've been doing forever, and the hardest part is that blank sheet when I just start from zero. It's, like, 'How am I going to top that last thing that I just did? I worked my ass off. I'm completely done. I have nothing left. I've got zero.' And so that's the challenge. But now that I'm about 70, 80 percent done with this new record, I'm pretty confident with it. And I really am looking forward to letting everybody hear it."