Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich says they've had a few "dances" with new material and have been grading parts to potentially be used for songs for their tenth album. He calls their writing process "peculiar."

The legendary metal band, which has sold 110 million albums worldwide over 30 years, hasn't released a studio album since 2008's "Death Magnetic" and that came five years after "St. Anger." It will likely be seven years between albums by the time this new album comes out.

Paired up separately to do interviews for their 3D movie, "Metallica: Through The Never", singer James Hetfield and guitarist Kirk Hammett are less revealing than Ulrich.

Hetfield says they need a concentrated time period to really buckle down. "Writing music is somewhat important to us," he understates, smiling. "We focus. Focus."

"That's the plan," adds Hammett. "We'll start writing the album. We were supposed to start last year [laughs] but there you have it; we'll see how it goes."

Ulrich, who is teamed with bassist Robert Trujillo for his interview, opens up a bit more about the next album when asked if Metallica has next year penciled off to write and record.

"We do," says Ulrich. "We are looking forward to making a record."

"It's not even penciled anymore," says Trujillo. "We're going to have to do this."

"Up at HQ in northern California, we've already done, what, two or three dances there," says Ulrich. "We've got a lot of the basic stuff waded through. When we write, we have a very peculiar writing process; we don't sit down and go, 'Okay, A to E to let's come up with something.' Ninety-five percent of our records come from jams -- literally pre-concert jams, tuning room jams, all this kind of stuff -- so everything we do is always recorded," he explains.

"The biggest time consuming element of us making a record is listening to all the stuff that we've recorded. So there's five years worth of stuff. We've listened to about 80 per cent of it. We've done two or three dances maybe, collectively six weeks to just listen through the ideas and kind of grade them."

"Process of elimination, too, at the same time," Trujillo interjects.

Continues Ulrich: "Grade them. Five stars, four stars, three stars, and then we take all the five stars bits and try to make songs out of them."

"But during that time we're having a blast, really a lot of fun doing it," ads Trujillo, "so if we can continue with that spirit, we're gonna have a good time making this record."

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  • BRAZIL-MUSIC-ROCK IN RIO-METALLICA

    James Hetfield (L) and Kirk Hammett of American heavy metal band Metallica perform during the Rock in Rio music festival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on September 20, 2013. AFP PHOTO / YASUYOSHI CHIBA (Photo credit should read YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Metallica "Through The Never" Comic-Con 2013

    SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 19: Musician Lars Ulrich of Metallica performs a secret concert in celebration of 'Metallica Through The Never' during Comic-Con International 2013 at Spreckels Theatre on July 19, 2013 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Metallica Through The Never)

  • BRAZIL-MUSIC-ROCK IN RIO-METALLICA

    James Hetfield of American heavy metal band Metallica during the Rock in Rio music festival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on September 20, 2013. AFP PHOTO / YASUYOSHI CHIBA (Photo credit should read YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Metallica Celebrates "Metallica Through The Never" With Secret Concert - Comic-Con International 2013

    SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 19: Musicians Kirk Hammett (L) and James Hetfield of Metallica perform a secret concert in celebration of 'Metallica Through The Never' during Comic-Con International 2013 at Spreckels Theatre on July 19, 2013 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BB Gun)

  • Rock in Rio 2013

    RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - SEPTEMBER 19: James Hetfield of the band Metallica performs on stage during a concert in the Rock in Rio Festival on September 19, 2013 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)

  • BRAZIL-MUSIC-ROCK IN RIO-METALLICA

    Kirk Hammett of American heavy metal band Metallica performs during the Rock in Rio music festival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on September 20, 2013. AFP PHOTO / YASUYOSHI CHIBA (Photo credit should read YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Rock in Rio 2013

    RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - SEPTEMBER 19: James Hetfield of Metallica band performs on stage during a concert in the Rock in Rio Festival on September 19, 2013 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)

  • A young music fan cheers as he watches the Brazilian rock/reggae band Skank perform during the Rock in Rio music festival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013. The week long festival will feature a list of headliners including Muse, Justin Timberlake, Metallica, Bon Jovi, and Bruce Springsteen. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

  • Metallica Celebrates "Metallica Through The Never" With Secret Concert - Comic-Con International 2013

    SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 19: Musician James Hetfield of Metallica performs a secret concert in celebration of 'Metallica Through The Never' during Comic-Con International 2013 at Spreckels Theatre on July 19, 2013 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BB Gun)

  • Metallica Celebrates "Metallica Through The Never" With Secret Concert - Comic-Con International 2013

    SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 19: Musician Robert Trujillo of Metallica performs a secret concert in celebration of 'Metallica Through The Never' during Comic-Con International 2013 at Spreckels Theatre on July 19, 2013 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BB Gun)

  • Metallica Celebrates "Metallica Through The Never" With Secret Concert - Comic-Con International 2013

    SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 19: Musician Kirk Hammett of Metallica performs a secret concert in celebration of 'Metallica Through The Never' during Comic-Con International 2013 at Spreckels Theatre on July 19, 2013 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BB Gun)

  • Metallica Celebrates "Metallica Through The Never" With Secret Concert - Comic-Con International 2013

    SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 19: Musician James Hetfield of Metallica performs a secret concert in celebration of 'Metallica Through The Never' during Comic-Con International 2013 at Spreckels Theatre on July 19, 2013 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for BB Gun)

  • BRAZIL-MUSIC-ROCK IN RIO-METALLICA

    James Hetfield of American heavy metal band Metallica during the Rock in Rio music festival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on September 20, 2013. AFP PHOTO / YASUYOSHI CHIBA (Photo credit should read YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images)

  • SiriusXM Presents Metallica Live At The Apollo Theater

    NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 21: James Hetfield (L) and Kirk Hammett of Metallica perform private, exclusive concert for SiriusXM listeners at The Apollo Theater on September 21, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for SiriusXM)

  • SiriusXM Presents Metallica Live At The Apollo Theater

    NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 21: Robert Trujillo, Lars Ulrich, Jose Mangin and Kirk Hammett attend Metallica's private, exclusive concert for SiriusXM listeners at The Apollo Theater on September 21, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for SiriusXM)

  • Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett

    Lars Ulrich, left, and Kirk Hammett from Metallica perform at a private concert for SiriusXM listeners at the Apollo Theater on Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013 in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)

  • Lars Ulrich

    Lars Ulrich from Metallica performs at a private concert for SiriusXM listeners at the Apollo Theater on Saturday, Sept. 21, 2013 in New York. (Photo by Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)

  • James Hetfield, Kirk Hammett

    James Hetfield, left, and Kirk Hammett of Metallica perform during the Rock in Rio music festival, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Friday, Sept. 20, 2013. The week long festival will feature a list of headliners including, Bon Jovi, Iron Maiden, Bruce Springsteen. (AP Photo/Silvia Izquierdo)

  • James Hetfield

    Fans cheer as James Hetfield of Metallica, performs on stage during the band's concert in Shanghai, China on Wednesday Aug. 14, 2013. (AP Photo) CHINA OUT

  • Fans watch heavy metal band Metallica perform at the Summer Sonic music festival in Tokyo, Saturday, Aug. 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Greg Baker)

  • Robert Trujillo, James Hetfield

    Robert Trujillo, left, and James Hetfield of Metallica perform on Day 3 of the 2013 Comic-Con International Convention on Friday, July 19, 2103, in San Diego. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

  • James Hetfield

    James Hetfield, of musical group Metallica, speaks to media at the "Metallica Through the Never" press line on Day 3 of Comic-Con International on Friday, July 19, 2103 in San Diego, Calif. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

  • Metal fans throw hand gestures to the stage during Metallica's set at the 2013 Revolver Golden Gods Award Show at Club Nokia on Thursday, May 2, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

  • Metal fans call out for Metallica as they work the press line before the 2013 Revolver Golden Gods Award Show at Club Nokia on Thursday, May 2, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)