25 Albums We're Looking Forward to in 2013

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It’s only nine days into the year, and already we’ve heard so much about what to expect in music. Most notably, we got a surprise announcement from David Bowie for his first album in a decade, but we also can’t wait to hear what new material comes from Arcade Fire and the much-buzzed-about My Bloody Valentine album. Below, we’ve listed 25 albums we’re really looking forward to this year. List your own in the comment box below.

nightbeds1_20121114_174535-300x300.jpeg 25. Night Beds – Country Sleep
Release Date: February 5
The debut album from this Nashville-by-way-of-Colorado Springs indie group has generated buzz for its slightly orchestral, falsetto-driven singles like “Even If We Try” and “You Were Afraid.” Led by the tortured soul-esque singer-songwriter Winston Yellen, Night Beds is already notching comparisons to Bon Iver, Sun Kil Moon and Fleet Foxes.—Hilary Saunders

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24. The Men – New Moon
Release Date: March 5
Although we got a new album from The Men in 2012 with Open Your Heart, they’re not breaking pace and following up shortly after with New Moon. According to a press release, this is their most “intensely personal” album to date. With a new set of tracks and surely an extensive tour to follow, The Men is a band we don’t mind hearing from frequently.—Tyler Kane

hilly eye front cover.jpeg 23. Hilly Eye – Reasons to Live
Release Date: January 22
After her departure from Titus Andronicus, it was good to find out about a new project from Amy Klein. The guitarist and writer returns this year with duo Hilly Eye, which also includes drummer Catherine Tung. From what we’ve heard in tracks like “Amnesia,” Reasons to Live promises a raw, unfiltered look at Klein’s songwriting in the spotlight.—Tyler Kane

Thumbnail image for unknownmortalorchestra21011.jpeg 22. Unknown Mortal Orchestra – II
Release Date: February 5
In just the 18 months since the release of their debut, it’s hard to imagine when Unknown Moral Orchestra found time to record their simply titled II, and they have seemingly been on tour endlessly since their first release. And, as good as their debut was, the band is known as a necessary live experience, with fans anticipating even more of their personality and presence seeping into their sophomore effort on new home Jagjaguwar.—Philip Cosores

deerhunter_1.jpeg 21. Deerhunter – TBA
After releasing one of their best albums in Halcyon Digest, the members of Atlanta’s Deerhunter focused on their own side-projects before reuniting to work on their follow up. The band went in exciting directions, Bradford Cox with Atlas Sound’s “Parallax” and Lockett Pundt with Lotus Plaza’s “Spooky Action at a Distance.” After taking some time apart, it will be exciting to hear what the band has learned.—Ross Bonaime

51wtd%2BpiayL._SL500_AA300_.jpeg 20. The Lone Bellow – The Lone Bellow
Release Date: January 22
The Lone Bellow, a Brooklyn trio whose members all grew up south of the Mason-Dixon Line, makes gut-wrenchingly sad country songs masked by gorgeous harmonies. Having successfully funded a Kickstarter campaign and opened for The Civil Wars last year, the group’s debut album is expected to cross genre lines in a big way in 2013.—Hilary Saunders

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rarariotbetalove.jpeg 18. Ra Ra Riot – Beta Love
Release Date: January 22
2010’s The Orchard didn’t quite build on the promise Ra Ra Riot presented on The Rhumb Line, but sophomore releases are commonly seeing a band still finding its footing. Beta Love will see the band attempting to rebound and also marks their first recording since losing cellist Alexandra Lawn, with a band shifting more focus to a synth-pop sound. The band has already proven capable of fun, resonating songs. Hopefully this proves something that they can replicate.—Philip Cosores

foxygen_alcumart.jpeg 17. Foxygen – We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic
Release Date: January 22
With an album that leans on an unashamed love of The Rolling Stones and The Velvet Underground, it’s looking like Foxygen could break out in 2013 with their fantastic new album, the not-at-all-oddly titled We Are the 21st Century Ambassadors of Peace & Magic. The collection was recorded by Richard Swift in his own National Freedom Studio and features all the warmth and jaggedness of decades-old acts, but Foxygen has no doubt stamped their own seal all over the thing, too.—Tyler Kane

IndiansPress2012.jpeg 16. Indians – Somewhere Else
It may seem premature to base any amount of anticipation for a record upon a live video and a single track, but this project from Danish musician Søren Løkke Juul immediately caught my attention. The echoes and electronic elements blend with the occasional upbeat acoustic segment to use sounds you’d usually need a whole mixtape to include. The tracks on the forthcoming Somewhere Else were written as a solo project, but recording them with a wealth of instruments gives the album an additional depth sure to make it a mainstay on my record player in 2013. You can stream the album in its entirety on NPR.
—Dacey Orr

It’s only nine days into the year, and already we’ve heard so much about what to expect in music. Most notably, we got a surprise announcement from David Bowie for his first album in a decade, but we also can’t wait to hear what new material comes from Arcade Fire and the much-buzzed-about My Bloody Valentine album. Below, we’ve listed 25 albums we’re really looking forward to this year. List your own in the comment box below.

Danny-Brown.jpeg 15. Danny Brown – Old
Release Date: TBA
“If people are looking for dick-sucking jokes, there isn’t too many of them,” Detroit rapper Danny Brown recently told Pitchfork about his forthcoming album, Old (It comes from the “O” in “ODB”—Not what you might assume it stands for, but Old Danny Brown). If his latest release, XXX, was a foul-mouthed introduction to Brown’s unmistakable flow and delivery, it looks like the follow-up is going to be its “more mature” (Brown’s words) older brother. With collaborations from Kitty Pryde and Purity Ring, we’re all ears.—Tyler Kane

black-keys-468x351.jpeg 14. The Black Keys – TBA
Release Date: TBA
While few official details about this band’s new album have been released, frontman Dan Auerbach seems adamant that The Black Keys will release its eighth album sometime in 2013. The follow-up to 2011?s El Camino is also rumored to feature the production work of Danger Mouse, who has worked with the blues rock duo on their past three records.—Hilary Saunders

Yeah+Yeah+Yeahs.jpeg 13. Yeah Yeah Yeahs – TBA
Release Date: Expected in spring
It’s incredible to think of how the Yeah Yeah Yeahs have changed in just a decade. They were a fast and dark trio on their debut “Fever to Tell,” but their most recent album, 2009’s “It’s Blitz!” was a dance-filled release that even was accessible for Glee to tackle. You never know what you’ll get from a new YYY release, but we’ll know when their fourth album hits this spring.—Ross Bonaime

mia-photoshoot.jpeg 12. M.I.A. – Matangi
Release Date: April 15
Why are we excited for this particular album from M.I.A.? Because it’s been a whole year since she released the intensely hooky Bad Girls with no album attached to it. We’ve been waiting a while. Also, according to the Los Angeles Times, it’s reported to be different from her previous works: less dark and more “positive.” That is, if her label will let go on with it. She thought she’d finished it, the British-born artist said, but her label asked her to “darken it up a bit” as she’d already been marketed as a rebel. But don’t they see? She still is one. With Matangi, M.I.A. is just rebelling against her label, Interscope, now.—Anita George

bowie_next.jpeg 11. David Bowie – The Next Day
Release Date: March
Amid Facebook tributes to David Bowie on the singer’s 66th birthday, and following years of rumors regarding the health of the legend, would anybody have guessed that he would use the occasion to announce his first new album in 10 years? No, no one would have guessed that. But the promise of 14 new Bowie tracks is one that’s completely welcome.—Philip Cosores

nick-cave-bad-seeds-push-the-sky-away-300-x-300.jpeg 10. Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds – Push the Sky Away
Release Date: February
We could go on and on about why we’re looking forward to the latest from Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. The group’s 15th studio album and follow-up to 2008’s Dig, Lazarus, Dig!! was recorded in a 19th-century French mansion and produced by Nick Launay (Gang of Four, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Arcade Fire). But perhaps it’s best to let Cave himself explain why it’s worth your attention as only he can: “If I were to use that threadbare metaphor of albums being like children, then Push The Sky Away is the ghost-baby in the incubator and Warren’s loops are its tiny, trembling heart-beat.”—Bonnie Stiernberg

breakers_localnatives.jpeg 9. Local Natives – Hummingbird
Release Date: January 29
It has been more than three years since Local Natives’ breakthrough Gorilla Manor, and Hummingbird promises to reflect the band’s musical growth and life experiences that marked the last few years. The Los Angeles’ foursome left their home to record with The National’s Aaron Dessner in Brooklyn, while drawing upon time spent with Arcade Fire, the loss of their bassist, and personal tragedies to shape a more ambitious sound and more personal lyrics. Could lose fans looking for radio-ready hits, but could gain some if it’s a masterpiece.—Philip Cosores

Thumbnail image for Telekinesis-Dormarion-608x608.jpeg 8. Telekinesis – Dormarion
Release Date: April 2
After a quiet 2012, Michael Benjamin Lerner (better known as Telekinesis) is back with a new album on Merge Records. It follows two rock-solid albums, including 2011’s 12 Desperate Straight Lines and 2009’s self-titled debut, so we can’t wait to see what the evolving songwriter surprises us with next. Throw in a touring lineup of Lerner, Erik Walters of The Globes on guitar, Say Hi’s Eric Elbogen on bass and Wild Flag’s Rebecca Cole on keyboards, and 2013 is looking bright for Telekinesis.—Tyler Kane

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7. Frightened Rabbit – Pedestrian Verse
Release Date: February 5
We’ve been sold on this Scottish quintet’s fourth studio album since September, when the band released an impressive EP of b-sides excluded from the LP. If State Hospital is any indication, Pedestrian Verse will continue Frightened Rabbit’s tradition of crafting excellent textured folk rock.—Hilary Saunders

amok-300x300.jpeg 6. Atoms for Peace – Amok
Release Date: February
Let’s, for a moment, move past the surreal notion that Thom Yorke—that pasty, cerebral saint of British rock—and Flea—the crazed, man-child/bass god of Red Hot Chili Peppers fame (and Back to the Future II scene-stealer)—actually decided to form a band together. What ultimately matters is the music that comes from it. With the combined creative output of these men, the result will surely be nothing to sneeze at. After adopting the name Atoms for Peace (much improvement over their original name, “??????”) and booking the occasional venue and festival gig, the band—consisting of Yorke and Flea as well as longtime Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich, R.E.M. drummer Joey Waronker and additional percussionist Mauro Refosco—is finally set to release the music previously only heard by those lucky enough to attend their sporadic get-togethers. Titled Amok, their debut album is set to be released by XL in February. The lead single “Default” demonstrates a sound that favors King of Limbs-esque-Radiohead, with its intrinsically layered, staccato electronic beats augmenting Yorke’s reliably haunting tenor. If this single is any indication, Amok will be something to behold. Too often, supergroup can be a dirty word. In this case, it sounds crazy enough to work.—Mark Rozeman

It’s only nine days into the year, and already we’ve heard so much about what to expect in music. Most notably, we got a surprise announcement from David Bowie for his first album in a decade, but we also can’t wait to hear what new material comes from Arcade Fire and the much-buzzed-about My Bloody Valentine album. Below, we’ve listed 25 albums we’re really looking forward to this year. List your own in the comment box below.

Christopher-Owens-Lysandre.jpeg 5. Christopher Owens – Lysandre
Release Date: January 14
After an incredible album in 2011 with Father, Son, Holy Ghost, it was a surprise to many that Christopher Owens split with Girls and went the solo route. This time, with more saxophone, classical guitar and a lofty concept for the album, Lysandre acts as another peek into Owens’ songbook we couldn’t have predicted.—Tyler Kane

tumblr_mg0yattPAn1qans7eo1_1280.jpeg 4. Beck – TBA
Many were disappointed that Beck’s first physical release of new music since 2008’s “Modern Guilt” came in Beck Hansen’s Song Reader. Sure, it was new material, but it was just sheet music. But those without musical talent supposedly won’t have to wait too long for more from Beck. In fact, Beck has hinted that he might have two albums arrive in 2013. It’s been a long time coming, but that much Beck is well worth the wait.—Ross Bonaime

vampireweekend.jpeg 3. Vampire Weekend – TBA
Release Date: Expected in spring
Only a few days ago, Vampire Weekend singer Ezra Koenig announced that his band’s newest album could be released as soon as the spring. Sounds good, considering that Vampire Weekend’s previous two albums have been perfect albums to kick off the hotter months. But Koenig also stated that this third album should be much darker than what is expected, and will also be the first album with outside production help. Even if it’s as dark as a starless New England night, expect the songs to be just as catchy as always.—Ross Bonaime

Thumbnail image for my-bloody-valentine-s01.jpeg 2. My Bloody Valentine – TBA
Release Date: Soon? Really, please, soon?
There are long waits for albums and then there’s the nearly two-decade wait we’ve had for a follow-up to My Bloody Valentine’s essential Loveless. Frontman Kevin Shields has teased it all year, saying, “I think with this record, people who like us will immediately connect with something.” The album is expected to be followed but another EP’s worth of material. And although the band has teased new material in the past, it looks like this is really happening. On Christmas Eve, the band confirmed on their Facebook page that a monumental final step (mastering the album) was complete. With a few tour dates already scheduled in early 2013, we’re looking forward to a full return for the band. The only question is how the recording will stack up after all this time and hype.—Tyler Kane

arcade-fire-300.jpeg 1. Arcade Fire – TBA
With Arcade Fire’s last album, The Suburbs, the band received their first #1 album and won Best Album at the Grammys. Let’s not forget it was one of our favorite albums of the year. More than ever, Arcade Fire has a lot to live up to. The band has been trying out new material in small shows and have announced that LCD Soundsystem mastermind James Murphy will be contributing to the release. Expectations are high for Arcade Fire, but they haven’t let us down yet.—Ross Bonaime

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