Anticipation is a fickle beast. Waiting for something that is slated for release in the future is like staring at food you cannot eat. But that’s never stopped us from wanting it. And though the clock has just ticked into 2015, the smell wafting from these forthcoming records has us salivating like a kid on Christmas. Some have a delivery date, while others wear the dreaded TBA label, yet they all hold a place on our mantle of those we can’t wait to listen to.
The Most Anticipated Albums of 2015
Between a forthcoming retrospective at MoMA and a new album co-produced with Arca, 2015 is going to be a very Bjork year. Bjork has dedicated herself to creating thoughtful, precisely executed work that constantly breaks new ground in music and performance and Arca is currently the most forward-thinking producer in the dark experimental electronica game, so this collaboration is sure to be extremely next level. Oh, and Haxan Cloak will also be involved if you need more ammo.
Braids (Arbutus, TBA)
According to their Twitter, Braids has spent this year going on multiple retreats to locations such as Vermont and Arizona to record their new album, with producer Damian Taylor (Björk, the Killers). Although the band hasn’t revealed many more details about it yet, Agor and Ra have both hinted that it will be full of beautiful, emotional ambient-electronic pop.
Dan Deacon, Gliss Riffer (Domino, February 24)
Dan Deacon isn’t someone who does the same thing twice. After winning a cult following with glitchy electronoisepop on Spiderman of the Rings, Deacon followed up with two more exploratory releases (Bromst and America) which gave the music more space. His newest promises to incorporate the richer, deeper textures he’s picked up in the last few years into a return to Spiderman-style, “uncontained fun” and celebratory bliss.
Downtown Boys (Don Giovanni, TBA)
The political and bilingual Providence six-piece were responsible for not only some of our favorite live shows of the year, but also released perhaps our favorite seven-inch of 2014 as well. The self-titled four-song record came out via Sister Polygon, and they’ve since joined up with Don Giovanni Records to record their first full-length, which will be out later this year.
Eskimeaux (Double Double Whammy)
Eskimeaux is the songwriting project of Epoch collective member and Frankie Cosmos keyboardist Gabrielle Smith. Like Frankie Cosmos, Smith has been releasing straight-to-bandcamp albums since 2008. The forthcoming full-length, on Double Double Whammy (Zentropy, Bury me at Makeout Creek, Hoodwink’d) will include fuller recordings of many of her Bandcamp songs, along with newer cuts, all melodically and lyrically deft, honestly written about friendship, relationships, and just getting along.
During a physically and emotionally tumultuous year marked by a car accident and multiple tours with the Epoch collective, Florist has poured herself into writing melancholy, evocative folk songs situated in nature and nostalgia. Florist’s songs are quietly powerful—they might be the meekest of the Epoch crew in terms of volume, but when it comes to emotional core and lyrical bravery, they hold audiences captive and have a way of lingering. Florist songs have been popping up here and there this year— a split tape with Eskimeaux, a track on the Le Sigh compilation—and we are looking forward to the full-length.
Girlpool, (Witchita TBA)
After releasing a knockout self-titled EP which tackled chaotic themes such as friendship, sexuality, and empowerment with confidence and clarity, Girlpool is migrating to the east coast and recording their highly anticipated full-length. They’ve been playing a lot of their new songs live at shows, and if the live cut that screams, “Do you feel restless when you realize you’re alive?” makes it onto the album, it’s sure to be one of our favorites of 2015.
Heems, Eat. Pray. Thug. (Greedhead Music, March 10)
After the dissolution of Das Racist, we’ve long been promised solo albums and in respect Kool A.D. has held court in keeping that promise. Heems not only seemed off the radar in 2014, he was; producing music for Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations and delivering Ivy League lectures. Eat. Pray. Thug., the long-anticipated, Heems solo has a release date and a single in which Heems says “clarity” over 20 times—a good sign.
Hop Along (Saddle Creek, TBA)
Hop Along’s first full-band full-length, Get Disowned was punk’s best kept secret. Critically overlooked but totally devastating, full of epic, unpredictably unfolding guitar songs with massive, quotable lyrics that wring you out emotionally and inspire the kind of furtive, conspiratorial devotion punks live for. The band has kept details about their new album under wraps, save that it was recorded by John Agnello (Kurt Vile, Sonic Youth) and is coming out on Saddle Creek sometime this year, which we hope earns them recognition beyond their niche fanbase.
The Julie Ruin (TBA)
2013 marked a triumphant return for Kathleen Hanna, who had been on an indefinite musical hiatus due to health-related reasons. That year saw the release The Punk Singer, the must-see film documenting her life and work, as well as the release of her new band The Julie Ruin’s debut, Run Fast. According to a recent press release, the Julie Ruin are work on a new LP.
THEESatisfaction, Earthee (Sub Pop, February 24)
The precursors “experimental” and alternative” often appear infront of the r&b genre associated with the music of Cat and Stasia. This is a misnomer. THEESatisfaction’s first single,”Recognition”, from their upcoming record proves the duo intend to explore the spiritual depth and sonic core of rhythm and blues. Earthee was recorded amongst the celestial super humans of Black Constellation in the Protect and Exalt Studio, the same collective and compound that birthed Shabazz Palaces.
Krill, A Distant Fist Unclenching (Exploding in Sound, February 17)
Krill called 2014’s Steve Hears Pile in Malden and Bursts Into Tears a “failed concept album,” though for a band which fully embraces the art of failure, that turned out to be a good thing. On the new album, Jonah Furman returns to writing what he knows best: wry, introspective, lyrically acrobatic songs about “self-love and self-hate and the rightness and wrongness of each,” over dissonant, malcontent, engrossing guitar rock. “Torturer,” the first single, is currently up on Bandcamp.
Malportado Kids, Total Cultura (Dead Labor, April)
Malportado Kids is the cumbia dance-punk project of Downtown Boys’ Victoria Ruiz and Joey DeFrancesco. Their brand of blistering multilingual and rhythm-heavy music embodies the energy of both raging at the injustices of the world and raging on the dance floor. If even a fraction of the vital energy of their shows translates on the record, it’s going to be a standout album.
Meredith Graves solo album (TBA)
Meredith Graves has been up to a lot outside of her band Perfect Pussy: in late 2014, she moved to New York, where she launched an imprint of Captured Tracks. She’s announced plans to release a book of her photography, and started writing for Rookie and Pitchfork, amongst other outlets. In interviews she’s revealed that her plans for the new year also include recording a solo album, which,like her writing, we expect to be thoroughly comprehensive, though more details have yet to surface.
Quarterbacks (Team Love, February 10)
Quarterbacks tapes on Double Double Whammy were some of our favorites of last year, so we were very excited to hear that a collection of those songs were amped up and re-recorded late last year with Kyle Gilbride from Swearin’. The album is set for release next month on Team Love, a fitting hometown label for the New Paltz trio.
Remy Banks, Higher (TBD)
Children of the Night’s Remy Banks has promised a solo debut in the first quarter, which is bad news for a COTN album in the near future and good news based on “7th Heaven (Interlude)”. Production from King Krule and Black Mack mixed with the art of storytelling that’s become synonymous with a World’s Fair crew record means this apple won’t fall far from the roots.
Screaming Females, Rose Mountain (Don Giovanni Records, February 24)
For the past couple of releases the Jersey trio have worked with renowned producer Steve Albini (2012’s Ugly, 2014’s Live at the Hideout), but for their next record, Rose Mountain they went into the studio with former Minus the Bear keyboardist Matt Bayles. Bayles has worked extensively with post-hardcore and metal-leaning bands like Mastodon, ISIS, The Fall of Troy, and Norma Jean, to name a few, plus Pearl Jam and Soundgarden. If the razor-sharp first single, “Ripe” is any indication, Rose should sound pretty huge.
Sleater Kinney, No Cities to Love (Sub Pop, January 20)
The Sleater-Kinney reunion seemingly came out of nowhere, but we’re not complaining. The legendary trio of Carrie Brownstein, Corin Tucker and Janet Weiss are set to release their first album in ten years on January 20—one they recorded secretly over the past year. “For the life of me, I don’t know how they kept it so quiet,” producer John Goodmanson told the NY Times last week.
Try the Pie (TBA)
If you read our Best Cassettes of 2014 list, you may have noticed a glowing review of the excellent tape by Bay Area indie pop four-piece Crabapple. The band’s drummer, Bean Kaloni Tupou (also a former member of Sourpatch) makes intimate solo music under the moniker Try the Pie. A handful of songs can be streamed on Bandcamp, including the excellent “Never Know Why”. Word on the street (and social medias) is that a proper Try the Pie full-length will be released in 2015, and we are very psyched to hear it.
Waxahatchee (Merge, TBA)
We’ve only heard approximately 56 seconds of Katie Crutchfield’s forthcoming record (her first with Merge), but if it’s anything like 2011’s American Weekend or 2013’s Cerulean Salt, it’s destined to be another collection of addictive guitar pop songs that sound both youthful and jaded, intimate and timeless.
Others we’re looking forward to:
Action Bronzon, Mr Wonderful (TBA)
All Dogs (Salinas TBA)
Ava Luna (April)
Aye Nako (TBA)
Blizzard Babies, Blizzard Babies (BLVD, 2/24)
Colleen Green, I Want to Grow Up (Hardly Art, 2/24)
Dam Funk & Nite Jewel (TBA)
Empress Of (TBA)
Jessica Pratt, On Your Own Love Again (Drag City, 1/27)
Jordaan Mason, The Decline of Stupid Fucking Western Civilization (2/3)
Heaven’s Gate (TBA)
Hot Sugar, God’s Hands (Break World Records, 2/24)
Leapling, Vacant Page (Exploding In Sound, 2/10)
Los Crudos, Discography (MRR Records)
Meow The Jewels (TBA)
Monster Rally & Jay Stone, Foreign Pedestrians (Gold Robot, 1/27)
Moritat, High Plus Tight (self-released, 1/20)
Mount Eerie, Sauna (P.W. Elverum and Sun, 2/3)
Natural Velvet (TBA)
Nicholas Nicholas (Miscreant Records)
Phantom Posse (January)
Pinkwash (Don Giovanni Records, TBA)
Run the Jewels, RTJ3 (TBA)
Russell St. Bombings, self-titled (Smartguy)
The Soft Moon, Deeper (Captured Tracks 3/31)
Suicideyear, LP (Software Recording Co., TBA)
Tiaras, self-titled (Mt. St. Mtn, 1/14)
Tica Douglas, Joey (self-released, 2/17)
Title Fight, Chlorine (TBA)
Tony Molina, untitled 2xLP (Slumberland)
Turnstile, Nonstop Feeling (TBA)
Twerps, High Range (Merge, February)
Viet Cong, Viet Cong (Jagjaguar, 1/20)
Young Ejecta, The Planet (Driftless Recordings, 1/27)