Are you excited for 2015 yet? After last week’s first preview of the most exciting albums scheduled for the year ahead, here’s the second 50 new albums you need to hear in the next 12 months – from Noel Gallagher and Kanye West to Laura Marling and Savages…
The Cribs (Title: ‘For All My Sisters’. Release date: March). This time last year they promised us two new albums. Now, with a new major label deal, they’re ready to unleash one of them – a pop record with a twist. “I think this is the poppiest record since ‘Men’s Needs, Women’s Needs, Whatever’,” says Ryan Jarman. “We fancied going back to where we concentrate on the melodies.”
Noel Gallagher (Title: ‘Chasing Yesterday’. Release date: March 2). Noel will play acoustic, electric and bass guitars on his new LP – as well as the Mellotron, the piano, keyboards and the electric washboard. According to the man himself, it’s full of “songs that make you kind of punch in the air while crying a little bit”, while Smiths legend Johnny Marr will also make a cameo.
The Maccabees (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Three long years after ‘Given To The Wild’, album four will be “more self-assured and confident” than their last, according to singer Orlando Weeks. After recording hours of music and “scrapbooking” the best bits to return to, the south Londoners are putting together something that will be “much less layered, less conceptual, more direct”.
Florence And The Machine (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Like her icon Kate Bush, Florence Welch is pretty good at keeping quiet when she wants to. That there’s going to be a new FATM album this year is the music industry’s worst-kept secret, but Flo’s revealed little detail so far. We do know, though, that she’s been “hiding in a studio 24 hours a day” to craft LP number three…
Smashing Pumpkins (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). After year’s ‘Monuments To An Elegy’, Billy Corgan and co have another new LP set for release this year. Described by the singer as “darker and shiner” than its predecessor, Corgan says: “People expect guitars, they expect passion. The best thing to do is shine up what we have and punch everybody in the face from a different angle.”
Muse (Release date: ‘Drones’. Title: TBC). Matt Bellamy has hinted at a back-to-basics approach for album number seven. Recording with AC/DC producer Robert ‘Mutt’ Lange, they’ve hinted it will be a departure from the grandiosity of ‘The 2nd Law’, with Bellamy claiming it will be “heavy” and free of the grandiose symphonies and orchestral tones of their more recent work.
Young Fathers (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). After Young Fathers won the Mercury Prize last October they said they couldn’t party as they had a new album to make. The group decamped to Berlin the next day to begin work on their eagerly awaited follow-up to ‘Dead’.
Savages (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Savages have an abundance of new material to choose from, and are testing out the new songs at a series of live dates, including a recent sold-out residency in New York. Singer Jehnny Beth says: “As with the first record, the songs are crafted for the stage. We want the shows to be part of the writing process.”
Slowdive (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). A year of reformation shows in 2014 had the feel of a victory lap, the resurgent Reading shoegazers taking their dreamy sonic cathedrals everywhere from China to the US. After alluding to recording sessions following their recent London shows, Instagram pics suggest they are in full swing.
Lana Del Rey (Title: ‘Honeymoon’. Release date: TBC) The singer has already been talking up her quick follow-up to last year’s ‘Ultraviolence’, saying it has a “more noirish feel” than her 2014 release. Nine tracks have already been written, and a cover of the standard ‘Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood’ is also likely to feature.
Mystery Jets (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). “I haven’t left the studio in 24 hours,” tweeted Mystery Jets’ Blaine Harrison recently from the Stoke Newington lair which his band have spent the last few months crafting their follow-up to 2012’s ‘Radlands’. Last year was a quiet one for them, but don’t expect 2015 to be similarly subdued.
The Prodigy (Title: ‘The Day Is My Enemy’. Release date: March 30). According to mainman Liam Howlett, the Essex band’s first album in six years is “neither guitar-based nor synth-based; it’s a kind of mixture of the two”. Asserting that it stands up to their ’90s work, he adds: “If I don’t feel the music I’m making, I don’t do it.”
James Blake (Title: ‘Radio Silence’. Release date: TBC). After winning the Mercury for ‘Overgrown’, Blake moved to LA for the follow-up, upping sticks to live with Chance The Rapper and collaborate with Kanye West and Bon Iver. “The album I’m writing now, I’ve had more focus doing this than I have before,” he said.
Swim Deep (Title: TBC. Release date: Summer). Kanye and Fleetwood Mac? They’re just two of the inspirations on the Birmingham band’s second album, says frontman Austin Williams. “We wanted to radicalise chart music,” he said. “So we’ve taken ‘Yeezus’ and ‘Rumours’ and put them together with acid house.” He’s also claimed it’s a “zero-gravity gospel record for the masses.”
Deap Vally (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Nick Zinner will produce the duo’s second album, with drummer Julie Edwards hinting that the LP has a “world weariness”. “We are not the little babies we were three years ago,” she said, while also revealing that they’re thinking of calling their favourite song ‘Fuck You #7’.
Coldplay (Title: ‘A Head Full Of Dreams’. Title: TBC). The more commercial accompaniment to last year’s sombre ‘Ghost Stories’, there’s also been hints that Coldplay’s seventh album might just be their last. “It’s our seventh thing, and the way we look at it, it’s the like last Harry Potter book,” said singer Chris Martin. “Not to say that thee might not be another thing one day…”
The Districts (Title: ‘A Flourish And A Spoil’. Release date: February 9). The US band have been working with John Congelton, who worked on St Vincent’s 2014 LP, for their first LP for Fat Possum. “The best thing John did for us was tell us to stop over-thinking,” said frontman Rob Grote. “The record sounds really raw. I can’t wait for people to hear it.”
Alice Glass (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). After quitting Crystal Castles in October 2014, Alice Glass expressed her desire to work as a solo artist. Since then, though, there’s been no words of dates or definite releases – and her management say there’s no solo record planned. Confusing, eh? For now, all we can do is speculate.
Grimes (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Claire Boucher’s follow-up to the groundbreaking ‘Visions’ was supposed to come out last September, but she scrapped her sessions and started again in LA. She’s been writing with guitars for the first time, too, with tracks ‘David’ and ‘Sleepwalking’ – which she’s already played live – expected to make the final cut.
The Dead Weather (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Jack White will return this year with his other band: last year, The Death Weather reconvened in Nashville and will release their third LP this year. Expect another broody, feral garage-rock beast…
The Kills (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). In addition to working with The Dead Weather, Alison Mosshart also spent the latter half of 2014locked away in studios in London and Nashville putting together the fifth Kills album with Jamie Hince. It’ll be the first LP since 2011’s ‘Blood Pressures’.
Beth Jeans Houghton (Title: TBC. Release date: March 10). It’s been three years since Houghton’s celebrated debut, ‘Yours Truly, Cellephone Nose’, but since then the Newcastle singer-songwriter has parted from her band The Hooves Of Destiny. “This record is a lot heavier,” she says. “I have a lot of aggression I need to release.”
Laura Marling (Title: ‘Short Movie’. Release date: March 23). Marling’s fifth album was written during the two years she spent living in LA, and features both stirring acoustic tracks and electrified FM rock. “My idea was to have a metallic, urban sound,” said Marling. “Living where I’ve been living, there’s always a fucking helicopter, there’s always the sound of a city behind you.”
Cat’s Eyes (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). The Horrors’ Faris Badwan and classical musician Rachel Zeffira may have taken a four-year break since their 2011 debut, but they’ll compensate with two releases this year: a soundtrack to the art flick The Duke Of Burgundy and their second album proper, which will have “structured pop songs” with an “expansive layer”.
Everything Everything (Title: TBC. Release date: Spring). Everything Everything’s new album takes a defiant approach to the shit we’re in. “I think you’d have to be blind and deaf to have lived through 2014 and not shed a tear,” says Jonathan Higgs. “If you put out a record next year and it’s all smiles, then I think you’re a liar, basically. Or you’re incredibly privileged and a moron.”
Kanye West (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Rick Rubin is thought to be onboard in a production role for Kanye’s ‘Yeezus’ follow-up, and other guests mentioned include Q-Tip, Mike Dean, Travi$ Scott and Pusha T. The Paul McCartney collaboration ‘Only One’, meanwhile, is melodic, calm and very unlike the brashness of ‘Yeezus’.
Spiritualized (Title: TBC. Release date: End of 2015). The space-rock group will put out their first LP since 2012’s ‘Sweet Heart Sweet Light’ this year, with Killing Joke’s Youth set to produce. In January, frontman Jason Pierce revealed he’d begun work on the record, and will complete the album in Spain later this year.
Courtney Barnett (Title: ‘Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit’. Release date: March). The title of Courtney Barnett’s debut album references author AA Milne, and the Melbourne-based singer-songwriter has told NME that she’d identified a common thread of “darker songs to do with death, getting older and life-y kind of themes” when writing the record.
Real Lies (Title: TBC. Release date: Spring). “It sounds like a cross between DJ Sprinkles and Oasis,” says Real Lies member Kev Kharas of the London trio’s debut album. According to Kharas the album, which is currently being finished in London, touches on themes including “friendship and A-road pubs, cruciate ligaments, playboy living, Holloway hangovers and the traffic on A406”.
Unknown Mortal Orchestra (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). UMO frontman Ruban Nielson was intent on making a happier record than 2013’s ‘II’, with dealt with insomnia and drug-fuelled paranoia. Studying the lyrics of Morrissey and Kanye West, snippets uploaded online hint at another dose of groggy psychedelia, with increased emphasis on keyboards and synthesisers.
Haim (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). “We’re always writing and figuring out new vibes and trying to get our inner Kanyes out,” Alana Haim told Rolling Stone last year. The trio have been back recording with ‘Days Are Gone’ producer Ariel Rechtshaid for their new album, although no details, titles or release dates have been confirmed just yet.
Diiv (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). A handful of new songs from Diiv’s latest sessions have surfaced online. ‘Dust’, an intense and grungy track, is now a regular in live shows, alongside another untitled new song. The group are currently rehearsing in LA and will relocate to New York this March to record with engineer Daniel Schlett.
Fat White Family (Title: TBC. Release date: Summer). Sean Lennon is co-producing the follow-up to 2013’s ‘Champagne Holocaust’, and Fat White Family are hinting at more surprises too: a song about Ike and Tina Turner, a calypso track, and a Suicide and krautrock-tinged song called ‘Iain Duncan Smith’s Eggs’ are all being touted for the record.
Alabama Shakes (Title: TBC. Release date: Spring). A funky vibe for Alabama Shakes’ second album, with singer Brittany Howard citing influences from Funkadelic, David Axelrod, Curtis Mayfield and the epic cowboy scores of Ennio Morricone.
Rolo Tomassi (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Celebrating their 10th birthday, the Sheffield hardcore group are back on original label Holy Roar. Expect a darker sound with producer Lewis Johns (Gnarwolves, Funeral For A Friend) at the helm.
A$AP Rocky (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC) Forget 2014 ever happened; it was, claims Rocky, music’s annus horribilis. We’re paraphrasing, there. His 2013 debut ‘Long.Live.A$AP’ is going to be a tough act to follow, but 2015 – or should that be 201$ – will erase all those awful, awful memories.
Frank Ocean (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). The much-anticipated hip-hop/R&B album of 2014 is now the much-anticipated hip-hop/R&B album of 2015. There has been a delay but Ocean has revealed that it’s almost complete. There are rumours of collaborations with the likes of Pharrell Williams, Brian Wilson and Lana Del Rey.
PJ Harvey (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Recorded in front of one-way glass at London’s Somerset House, with 3,000 paying punters peering through the pane, Harvey intends to show the “flow and energy of the recording process”. This novel approach to laying down tracks takes place mid-February – don’t bang on the glass, she can’t see you.
Carl Barât &The Jackals (Title: ‘Let It Reign’. Release date: February 16). With a band recruited on Facebook to assist with overdubs, the imminent ‘Let It Reign’ reveals Barât’s rediscovered fascination with the guitar. Recent releases ‘Glory Days’ and ‘A Storm Is Coming’ provide strong hints as to nature of the beast.
Radiohead (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). As you’d expect, details on musical direction are scant – Radiohead are still keeping us guessing after all this time. The biggest question is, how will they release it? One would expect that it won’t just appear in your iTunes library without prompting.
Marilyn Manson (Title: ‘The Pale Emperor’. Release date: January 19). The goth rocker told NME that ‘The Pale Emperor’ deals with scapegoating and lessons America failed to learn from the Columbine massacre, which happened 10 years ago in 2005. “It’s a dark record but that’s me,” he says. “If you tap the cobra, you’re gonna get fangs.”
Drenge (Title: TBC. Release date: Spring). Since Drenge released their debut album in 2013, they’re not a trio – old friend and bassist Rob Graham has joined the Loveless brothers. Their second LP, though, was mainly recorded without him. “It’s not so abrasive,” says Rory. “We’ve chilled out. There’s one song that screams Fleetwood Mac.”
Beirut (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). One’s called ‘Dim Sum’, another ‘Kebabs’. And there are three tracks named after a variety of burgers. Beirut’s Zach Condon, you see, decides his working titles by whatever meal he had on the way to the studio.
The Wombats (Title: ‘Glitterbug’. Release date: April 6). The Wombats found the fun factor in Joy Division on their 2007 debut, and anti-depressants on 2011’s ‘This Modern Glitch’. On their third album they’ve merged ’80s synths and glossy chart indie into a shamelessly commercial sheen to disguise their seditious pop songs about domestic violence and Vicodin-sex Sundays.
Gaz Coombes (Title: ‘Matador’. Release date: TBC). The former Supergrass frontman began work on his second solo album right after his first one, ‘Here Come The Bombs’, was released in 2012. The self-produced and almost entirely self-played ‘Matador’ includes tracks that are wilfully lean, Krautrock-like and the occasional drop of prog.
Death Grips (Title: ‘The Powers That B’. Release date: February 10). Last July, Death Grips announced their demise. But the hip-hop outfit have certainly been active since: in October they announced the completion of new record ‘Jenny Death’, the second half of double album ‘The Powers That B’ following 2014’s Bjork-featuring ‘Niggas On The Moon’.
Errors (Title: ‘Lease Of Life’. Release date: March 23). The Glaswegian post-rock trio’s new album – and their fourth in total – is out on Mogwai’s Rock Acion label in March and the celestial, seven-minute long title track is streaming online now.
The xx (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). The xx began sessions on their third album in Texas last year before continuing work back in London. “We’ve got quite a lot of songs that are not finished, but I’m excited about it,” said producer Jamie xx. “It feels a lot more free.” Jamie will also reportedly release his first solo album this year, too.
Damon Albarn (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Damon’s relentless work ethic means there might be a few projects in the pipeline this year. He previously claimed he has a full new The Good, The Bad & The Queen album to record as soon as he finds time, and there’s even talk of a collaboration with old Britpop nemesis Noel Gallagher, too.
Primal Scream (Title: TBC. Release date: TBC). Last year, Primal Scream lost estranged guitarist Rob ‘Throb’ Young, who served in the band for 22 years until 2006. They’ve been working on a follow-up to their politically charged LP ‘More Light’, while frontman Bobby Gillespie has also reportedly been writing with Sky Ferreira.
Want more? Check out 50 other great releases of 2015 – and everything we know about them already.