My Chemical Romance called it quits almost two years ago, leaving fans of the iconic emo band with little hope of new music. Less than a year later, frontman Gerard Way came out of the woodwork and promised a solo LP, one that would prove to sound nothing like his former band of 12 years. Way's album, Hesitant Alien, was something of a triumph, with its assortment Britpop experiments. The question then became: What's up with the rest of the band?
Longtime guitarist and MCR songwriter Ray Toro sat down with Alternative Press to answer just that, explaining that he, too, has a solo debut in the works.
"I’ve been working on it for the past year and a half or so, writing and tracking as I go. It’s been a little bit slow going because there are a lot of different hats I’ve been wearing this time, obviously. I had to learn how to sing, write lyrics, write songs on my own," Toro said. "I want to tour on the record so now I need [to get used to] singing in front of people and being the center…Actually, I don’t want it to be the center of everything, but that is the voice people want to hear. Obviously, in My Chem we had an incredible lead singer in Gerard, and that’s where the focus was. There was comfort for me as a guitarist because that is what I am confident at. That’s one of the things I’ve had to grow into, the confidence to sing and be able to perform in front of people."
For Toro, there's a lot to learn...especially when it comes to the not-so-glamorous side of the music industry. "Out of any of us in My Chem, Gerard was in touch with the label and management to discuss the direction of the band. That’s a piece that is completely new to me, as well," he said.