By Amy Ryan
July 04, 2008 at 03:00 PM EDT

According to Billboard, ZZ Top thinks producer/mogul Rick Rubin (inset) can do for them what he did for Johnny Cash and(to a lesser extent) Neil Diamond. The boogie-rock trio reportedly wants to return to its raspy roots and make a record that resembles its ’70s hits like “La Grange” (embedded after the jump). I think this is a good idea, if only because I really liked those grimy older ZZ Top tunes and didn’t care much for the more streamlined pop sound that’s been their bread and butter for the last 25 years. Rubin tends to favor a stripped-down approach as well. I don’t know if he can restore the band to its former glory, or if anyoneat this late date still cares or still thinks of ZZ Top as more than anovelty act, but I’d love to be there in the studio just to watch Rubinand Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill trade beard grooming tips. What think you, PopWatchers?

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