H.I.M. are in the homestretch of getting together their follow-up to 2010's 'Screamworks' album. Singer Ville Valo, who entered the studio with his band in September to begin working on a disc titled 'Tears on Tape,' says they've got a feel for the album that's a blend of "melancholy" and "Motorhead."

Valo tells ARTISTdirect, "'Tears on Tape' is going to be really organic, straight-in-your-face, super melancholy bulls--- [Laughs]. It's going to be something nobody's heard before. I'm really happy about it. It sounds great. Remember the soundtrack for 'Twin Peaks' that Angelo Badalamenti did? It's got that similar forlorn, melancholy quality but mixed up with Motörhead. That's where we're at! We're really happy. It's got that dreamlike quality. It's like Roy Orbison meeting Metallica."

As for the 'Tears on Tape' album title, Valo explains, "The point behind that is I grew up with music so music has been my safe haven in good and bad situations. Those tears that the artists put on tape are the ones that carry us on. The 'Tape' in the title is symbolic. It's about the fact you actually put your heart out. When you pour your heart into whatever you're doing, it's valid. Nobody can take that away. It's so tough to start writing. When you get the flow, it revitalizes you and gives you the opportunity to feel you do have the reason to exist."

While we wait for the new album, H.I.M. have a hits collection placeholder. 'XX: Two Decades of Love Metal' arrives in stores this coming Tuesday (Nov. 6). The vocalist says of being able to put out a hits collection, "It makes us feel really f---ing old. [Laughs] At the end of the day, we're proud of what we've done, and there's an opportunity to do something like this. I belong to the Black Sabbath school that albums are albums. You have your bad tracks, you have your good tracks, you have your sentimental tracks, you have your heavy metal tracks. You have to have that yin and yang going on."

He goes on to add, "It's a reminder that we do exist. I think that was the most important thing with the compilation, per se. Nine out of ten bands don't get this far. I'm not talking about success. I'm talking about the fact [that] bands actually stay together. It's a long time to be in a band and still appreciate everybody you're playing the music with."

Look for the 'XX' hits collection next week, with the upcoming 'Tears on Tape' record tentatively expected sometime in 2013.

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