For the past few weeks, we’ve taken a look back at the year that was in music for 2014. Now it’s time to look ahead to some of the albums that we are highly anticipating for 2015. Some of these are guesses (and educated ones at that), and ones we will be monitoring closely. Here’s the list in alphabetical order
Alabama Shakes (TBA)
They’re putting the finishing touches on their sophomore album and have announced a couple of shows in London and Australia, so expect the new album to drop in the first half of 2015. Alabama Shakes‘ rise to indie stardom has been completely organic and grassroots, and album #2 could see them launch to new territories.
Andrew Keoghan, Every Orchid Offering & Anthonie Tonnon, Successor (March)
Andrew Keoghan and Anthonie Tonnon are two singer-songwriters from New Zealand who have made waves in their native country, and they’re now focused on breaking through in the North American market. Both will release albums early in the year, and in advance they have each released singles that have catchy, classic-pop arrangements and an orchestral quality.
Bear Mountain, TBA
We know Bear Mountain have been in the studio working on new material, but they have yet to make an official announcement. Knowing these guys, they’ll probably release the new album unexpectedly but still wow us. The Vancouver quartet is a good bet to be one of this year’s breakthrough bands.
Belle Mare, TBA
The Brooklyn, indie-folk, dream-pop duet has played a few shows in the fall with some new material. It’s been a couple of years since Belle Mare released their debut EP, and hopefully an LP is around the corner.
The Bright Smoke, TBA (May)
One of our favourite discoveries from last year, New York City’s The Bright Smoke make brooding, dark indie-folk that is absolutely hypnotic. They’ve been busy rehearsing new songs for the past few months, and they recently announced their still-to-be-named album will be out in May.
Maryland rockers are going to release a new record in 2015. After lead singer, Neil Fallon had neck surgery, the band took some time off in early 2014. When they returned to the road later on in the year, Clutch had a few new tunes to share with audiences, Fallon promised a new record soon, which hopefully will be this year.
Courtney Barnett, TBA
Music fans across the world fell in love with the clever, engaging singer-songwriter from Melbourne, Australia. Despite criss-crossing the globe on multiple occasions, Courtney Barnett has been busy writing new tunes. Don’t be surprised to see a new album come out soon as Barnett looks to build on her newfound popularity.
The Decemberists, What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World (January 20)
The creative and eclectic storytellers from Portland, Oregon will release their seventh LP early in the new year. With a few tracks already released, The Decemberists latest album promises once again to paint new worlds for us to imagine.
The Districts, A Flourish and a Spoil (February 10)
The little band from Lititz, Pennsylvannia will release their first proper album with indie record label Fat Possum. The Districts made some noise and new fans in 2014, but 2015 could see them become this year’s Future Islands with their great songwriting and mature rock sound, as evidenced by “4th and Roebling”. Oh, these guys are barely 20.
Father John Misty, I Love You Honeybear (Feb. 17)
Father John Misty‘s Fear Fun was one of the best albums of 2012. When J. Tillman took on the monicker Father John Misty, his sound and songwriting went through a pretty big evolution although his trademark sarcasm and very sharp wit remained. We expect more of the same from I Love You Honeybear.
Fleet Foxes, TBA
It’s been nearly four years since Seattle’s Fleet Foxes have released an album. We know frontman Robin Pecknold has written some new music and also embarked on a solo project called White Antelope. It’s unclear, however, when we’ll get something new from Fleet Foxes, but we’ll keep on adding them in this space until they do!
Heartless Bastards, TBA
It’s been nearly three years since the Austin-based, southern-rock quartet released their breakthrough sophomore album, Arrow. Members of Heartless Bastards have mentioned that they’ve been working on new material for past few months, making a new album in 2015 possible.
Heather Woods Broderick, Glider (TBA)
Heather Woods Broderick will likely release her second record, Glider in 2015. This was on our list for anticipated 2014 records, but it never saw a release. Glider was recorded in early 2014 and will likely feature her brother Peter Broderick. Her first album, From The Ground is a stunning record, and her collaborations with many artists including Sharon Van Etten and Alela Diane have been great, so we’re really excited to hear what she’ll release next.
Julia Holter, TBA
Julia Holter‘s 2013 record Loud City Song, which was inspired by the Greek tragedy Hippolytus, was one of the most inventive and creative records released that year. Holter had a pretty quiet year in 2014, but started some rumblings about new music, so we’re expecting something from her in 2015.
The Joy Formidable, TBA
Welsh rockers The Joy Formidable took much of 2014 off to record a bunch of new music. As fans, like us, wait for album #3, people can subscribe to the fan club and receive a series of Welsh language singles, which will help fill the gap before they release their next record.
Kurt Vile (TBA)
Philadelphia singer-songwriter extraordinaire, Kurt Vile, has never been one to sit around idly, but instead is either touring or working on new music. Rumours abound that Vile has recorded nearly enough material for a full-length album. We wait anxiously for the follow-up to his stupendous Wakin’ on a Pretty Day.
Lady Lamb the Beekeeper, After (March 3)
Aly Spaltro, also known as Lady Lamb The Beekeeper, is one of our favorite artists. Her music is quite unique, and her lyrics are unabashed and full of great imagery. Her 2013 record Ripely Pine was one of our favorite records of that year, and her 2015 record After is an early contender for that list. The first single from the new album, “Billions of Eyes”, is below.
Mal Blum, TBA
We were really stoked to hear about Mal Blum signing with Don Giovanni Records. We got even more excited when we learned Screaming Females’ Marissa Paternoster was going to be producing Mal Blum’s new record. Will there be a new sound for Blum on the new record? We don’t know, but we do know they are a great songwriter and we can’t wait to hear the new record.
Modest Mouse, Strangers to Ourselves (March 3)
Seven years – yes, seven years since indie rock legends Modest Mouse have released an album. For fans, like us, news of the new album and the drop of the first single, “Lampshades on Fire”, were like early Christmas presents.
Moon Duo, Shadow of the Sun (March 3)
While Sanae Yamada and Ripley Johnson, the frontman for Wooden Shjips, released a live album last year and a remix of 2012’s Circles, it’s been nearly three years since the indie, reverb-rock duo have released a proper album. This all changes with the release of Shadow of the Sun early in 2015, and the first single from the animal is the hazy rocker, “Animal”.
My Morning Jacket, TBA
Like so many bands on this list, it has been four years since My Morning Jacket, the eclectic southern-rock band from Louisville, Kentucky quintet, released Circuital. They spent the latter half of 2014 recording new music, reportedly enough for a double album. However, the most likely scenario sees the band releasing a new album in 2015 (likely the spring) and another in 2016, and an extensive tour. We cannot wait to see the best live band in the world once again!
The National, TBA
The National promise something different for their next album. They’re one of the most consistently good bands out there right now, and it’s pretty exciting hearing they are planning to step out of their comfort zone. No, we don’t expect a reggae record or anything like that, but we expect to hear more of the sad stuff we love from them, maybe with a little different sound.
PEACE, Happy People (February 9)
PEACE have been making some great melodic indie rock along the lines of Vampire Weekend since 2012. After releasing their debut album In Love in 2013, which includes great tracks like “Bloodshake” and the 10-minute “1998 (Delicious)”, we are anticipating their sophomore album that will be out in February titled Happy People. Here is a track from the new album, “Lost On Me”.
Pearl and the Beard, Beast (TBA)
Pearl and the Beard are three incredibly talented and passionate musicians. You can feel that while listening to their records, the passion is infectious and it’s hard not to feel instantly connected to what they’re doing. In early 2015, they will release Beast, an album they’ve been working hard on for quite some time.
Matthew Houck has released some absolutely incredible music over the last ten years as Phosphorescent. His last record, Muchacho was a masterpiece. If you can’t wait for his new record, he will be releasing Live At The Music Hall early in the year, and you can pre-order that here.
PJ Harvey, TBA
Just last week, it was reported that UK songwriter extraordinaire PJ Harvey will record a new album early in the new year, and the recording will will be done in front of live audiences. Tickets are already sold out for this rare and unique experience at Somerset House in London. But in case you want to check to see if new tickets will be released, here’s the link. Harvey’s ninth studio album will likely be among the most anticipated of the year.
Public Service Broadcasting, The Race for Space (February 23)
There is no way to compare Public Service Broadcasting to anyone, really. This project is the brainchild of monikers J. Willgoose, Esq. & Wrigglesworth, and the pair take old footage and audio samples from documentaries or public service videos and add their own instruments, beats and sounds. For instance, 2013’s Inform, Educate – Entertain included songs about Mt. Everest (“Everest”), flying (“Spitfire”), and responsible driving (“Signal 30”). With 2015’s theme on space travel and a video including break-dancing astronauts, we have a feeling The Race for Space will be well worth the wait.
Arguably the most influential band of our lifetime has dropped several hints that a new album is coming soon – from Thom Yorke’s messages on social media to Jonny Greenwood playing a few tracks as he goes classical. There are rumours that the album could be an extension of King of Limbs, but we’ve learned to expect the unexpected from Radiohead.
Screaming Females, Rose Mountain (February 24)
New Brunswick, NJ punk band Screaming Females are one of the best live bands out there today. On February 24th, the trio will release their sixth record, Rose Mountain. We’ve heard “Ripe” and “Wishing Well” off of Rose Mountain and we’re stoked.
Self-described as “jazz-infused grunge”, Slothrust bring a unique blend of genres to their sound. Their 2014 LP Of Course You Do was one of our favorite records of 2014, and we’re looking forward to them making the list in 2015 with their upcoming record, which happens to have gotten an assist from Ben Kweller. Sweet.
Sleater-Kinney, No Cities to Love (January 20)
In October, Sleater-Kinney surprised us and announced a reunion and a record, and instantly, No Cities To Love jumped to the top of our “Most Anticipated Records” list. After a hiatus of 7 years, and members doing other things, it seemed like a Sleater-Kinney reunion wasn’t going to happen. They left us with a fine record, The Woods in 2005, and we’re hoping they pick up where they left off.
Speck Mountain, TBA
Chicago based Speck Mountain will be releasing a new record in 2015. Their record Badwater hit the sweet spot with its dreamy, jammy rock sound. We’re really stoked to hear Marie-Claire Balabanian’s voice on record again along with her band of Karl Broderick, Linda Malonis, and Chris Dye in 2015.
One of the great albums of 2013 was Mackenzie Scott’s debut album as TORRES. She’s worked on a number of songs over the past several months, including releasing “New Skin” in September that included Sharon Van Etten, Adam Granduciel and Dave Hartley of The War on Drugs, and Chris Wilson of Ted Leo/RX. We are highly anticipating the next album from one of the best singer-songwriters around.
Turtle Giant, Golden Summer (TBA)
Originally from Sao Paolo, Brazil, and having spent time in Macau, China, indie-rock trio Turtle Giant are putting the final touches on Golden Summer. They’ve released a couple of new tracks in the fall, which indicated a change in sound – one more towards space-rock.
Twin Shadow, Eclipse (March 17)
George Lewis, Jr. – a.k.a. Twin Shadow – has quietly and organically established a cult following for his innovative mix of R&B, electronic, and dream-pop. With Eclipse set to be released within the first quarter of the new year, we expect people to start saying Lewis’ name in the same breath as Prince.
Ty Segall, TBA
The calendar has turned so that means Ty Segall will be releasing at least one if not two new albums. How this young man how has not even reached 30 is able to release 18 albums in 8 years is beyond us, but we’re always excited to see what he’ll do next – whether as a solo artist, with the Ty Segall Band, Fuzz, Mikal Cronin, or a new project.
One of the best psychedelic-pop bands to come out in some time is Widowspeak, who released three albums from 2011 and 2013. The natives of Tacoma, Washington and Chicago have recorded more than a half-dozen songs, making their fourth release on Captured Tracks likely in the first half of 2015.
Wild Nothing, TBA
The project of creative genius Jack Tatum, Wild Nothing will be releasing a new album in 2015. When and what it will sound like remains largely unknown – will it be a jangle-pop album? An electronic, synth-pop record? Something completely different? – but Tatum reported back in October that the new album was almost finished.
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