Now that we’ve finished recapping our favorite albums of 2022, we’re moving on the albums we can’t wait to hear in 2023. We’ve put together a list of 100, including many that we’re positive are coming out this year and a few that we’re crossing our fingers for, and the list ranges from indie rock lifers to pop megastars to upstart hardcore bands to so much else in between. 100 may sound like a lot, but there are tons of other albums not listed here that we’re looking forward to and plenty more that we’re sure to love but don’t even know about yet. We also didn’t list the ones that have seemed up in the air for a few years now, but we’re crossing our fingers that we’ll get My Bloody Valentine, Cardi B, Sky Ferreira, Frank Ocean, and/or The Distillers this year too.
Read on for the list, in alphabetical order, and let us know which albums you’re looking forward to this year. For more, check out our lists of the metal and hardcore releases we’re anticipating this year.
A$AP Rocky – Don’t Be Dumb
During a recent concert for Amazon Music Live, A$AP Rocky revealed that the followup to 2018’s Testing is titled Don’t Be Dumb (not All Smiles, as previously reported), and that it’s done. “Album’s finished. Don’t Be Dumb. Let’s go!” Let’s go indeed.
Algiers – SHOOK
due 2/24 via Matador
Atlanta’s Algiers have never fit any box people have tried to put them in, and that’s not likely to change on their fourth album. For it, they’ve opened their doors, expanding their horizons and welcoming in a wide variety of collaborators, including Zack de la Rocha (Rage Against the Machine), Big Rube, Samuel T Herring (Future Islands), Mark Cisneros (The Make-Up), Lee Bains III, Jae Matthews (Boy Harsher), and more. “It very much deepens and broadens the world of Algiers,” says drummer Matt Tong.
We don’t know much about it yet, but the followup to ANOHNI’s fantastic 2016 LP HOPELESSNESS, and its 2017 companion EP PARADISE, is on the way sometime this year. She made the announcement in an Instagram post (now deleted), saying, “But hey, I’m releasing a new record this year. That’s something to look forward to.”
The Arcs – Electrophonic Chronic
due 1/27 via Easy Eye Sound
The Arcs, one of the many projects of The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach, had already been working on their second album for a while when bandmate Richard Swift died in 2018. While Swift plays on most of it, Electrophonic Chronic also became a tribute to him. “It’s a way for us to say goodbye to him, by revisiting him playing and laughing, singing,” Dan says. “It was heavy at times, but I think it was really helpful to do it.”
Autre Ne Veut
Indie-R&B pioneer Autre Ne Veut came out of hibernation in 2022 with his first song in seven years, “Okay,” and it’s a great comeback. No concrete word on a new album, but let’s hope.
In underground emo circles, awakebutstillinbed’s sophomore LP is becoming as long-awaited and up-in-the-air as a new Frank Ocean album. But when they released their great split with For Your Health last year, they said the songs on the split were from the same sessions as LP2, so we’re hoping this is the year we finally get to hear the album.
The Bad Ends – The Power & The Glory
due 1/20 via New West
Athens, GA’s The Bad Ends are led by Mike Manitone of cult indie rockers Five Eight, but the biggest news surrounding the group is that their drummer is R.E.M. founding member Bill Berry, who hasn’t played in a group since parting ways with Buck, Mills and Stipe in the mid-’90s. The Power and the Glory began as a Manitone solo album, but that changed with Berry, who says “It was energizing to once again play with top notch musicians. This record is unique for me in that it was the only one, with which I was involved, that was written, rehearsed, recorded, produced and mastered in Athens!”
Bat For Lashes
In August, Bat For Lashes said she recorded the final song for her new album, and it seems to be called The Dream of Delphi.
Seattle doom greats Bell Witch seem to finally be ready to follow 2017’s beloved Mirror Reaper. They told Decibel that they’ve got a Billy Anderson-produced followup due in spring/summer via Profound Lore, and they said “I think our scope has expanded since writing Mirror Reaper and we are able to envision conceptual compositions on a broader scale.” They also added, “this record is definitely an expansion of what we’ve done before.”
Belle & Sebastian
Belle & Sebastian recorded 2022’s A Bit of Previous at their Glasgow HQ – the first time they’d made a record entirely in their hometown in ages – writing tons of material and whittling it down to 12 songs. Could more songs from those sessions be on the way? The band welcomed 2023 with this tease:
— belle & sebastian (@bellesglasgow) January 5, 2023
Billy Nomates – CACTI
due 1/13 via Invada
Tor Maries wowed us with her 2020 debut as Billy Nomates, which blended post-punk, pop and just a little country twang. For its follow-up, Tor worked primarily on her own, both in her kitchen and at Bristol, UK’s Invada Studio, with lyrics blurring the personal and political. “I hope everyone finds their own narrative in CACTI,” Tor says. “I think it’s about surviving it all.”
The Black Dahlia Murder
After vocalist Trevor Strnad took his own life, The Black Dahlia Murder chose to continue on with guitarist and co-founder Brian Eschbach taking over on lead vocals. “None of us wanted it to be over,” Brian told Decibel. “We still feel like there is a lot left to do. I know Trevor would keep this band going if I went down a deep, dark path and weren’t here. It’s bigger than us.” They played their first show with Brian on vocals this past fall, and they’ve been writing an LP too.
blink-182 are back with their classic lineup of Tom DeLonge, Mark Hoppus, and Travis Barker, and their first new album together in over a decade is coming this year. They recently released its lead single “Edging,” and Tom says “the new blink-182 album has some of the most progressive, and elevated music [we’ve] ever had. In honesty, I am holding my breath for you to hear these other songs. ‘Edging’ is fun, and a perfect way to remind u of the fun again. But just u fucking wait.” Travis also teased that it will include “Anthem Pt. 3.”
The self-titled debut EP from Phoebe Bridgers, Julien Baker, and Lucy Dacus was one of our favorite releases of 2018. Could the trio have more boygenius material in the works, too?
Buggin have been one of our favorite newer hardcore bands around for a while, and their new song “Attitude” from the new Flatspot Records compilation has us very excited for their eventual first full-length.
The C.I.A. – Surgery Channel
due 1/20 via In the Red
It’s no secret: The C.I.A. began as the husband and wife duo of Denee & Ty Segall that found them exploring the world of synthesizers and drum machines, but for their second album, they’ve added Ty’s Freedom Band buddy Emmett Kelly to the mix. With instruments sterilized and scrubs on, they enter Surgery Channel for some devilish over-the-counter fun.
Caroline Polachek – Desire, I Want To Turn Into You
due 2/14 via Sony Music/The Orchard/Perpetual Novice
Caroline Polachek has been slowly building up to the follow-up to her 2019 solo LP Pang over the last few years, releasing first single “Bunny is a Rider” in 2021, and “Billions,” “Sunset,” and “Welcome to my Island” over the course of 2022. She co-produced all four, working with collaborators including PC Music’s Danny L Harle and A.G. Cook, Sega Bodega, and Olivia Rodrigo collaborator Dan Nigro, and each is an immediately likable slice of dynamic alt-pop, making our hopes for the rest of the album extremely high, too.
The Church – The Hypnogogue
due 2/24 via Communicating Vessels
Steve Kilbey, frontman of long-running Australian psych greats The Church, says the group’s 26th album is in “our top three” of their discography. He notes it’s also “the most prog rock thing we have ever done,” and the group’s first concept album. While some may just want The Church to write another “Under the Milky Way,” The Hypnogogue‘s title track is excellent.
We don’t know much about Code Orange’s next album, but they’re due for one and they were in the studio with Billy Corgan recently, so something’s gotta be stirring.
Danny Brown – Quaranta
Danny Brown revealed the album title Quaranta in 2021 and released the new song “Winter” in 2022. No official release date yet but our fingers are crossed for 2023.
Robert Smith has been promising a new album — three albums? — for so long it’s become a “we’ll believe it when we see it” situation, but there’s a lot of evidence that points to 2023 being the year we’ll finally get a follow-up to 2008’s 4:13 Dream. They played a handful of new songs on their 2022 Lost World European tour, and with a North American tour likely this year it feels like something is imminent. Fingers crossed.
…IT MEANS MY DESIRE TO RELEASE A NEW ALBUM IS OVERWHELMING! X
— ROBERT SMITH (@RobertSmith) February 4, 2022
Death Grips are in the midst of a comeback, with an extensive tour planned for this year. They haven’t publicly said anything about an album, but it seems possible, and we’re staying hopeful.
Depeche Mode – Memento Mori
due TBA via SONY
“We started work on this project early in the pandemic, and its themes were directly inspired by that time,” Martin Gore said of Depeche Mode’s upcoming 15th album, which will be their first as a duo following the 2022 death of Andy Fletcher. “We decided to continue as we’re sure this is what he would have wanted, and that has really given the project an extra level of meaning.” Dave Gahan added, “Fletch would have loved this album.” There’s been no details on the album yet, but as their 2023 tour starts in March, we’re likely to have news sooner than later.
Dougie Poole – The Rainbow Wheel of Death
due 2/24 via Wharf Cat
Brooklyn country artist Dougie Poole made a splash with 2020’s Freelancer’s Blues, writing twangy songs about offbeat subjects in very relatable ways, but for its follow-up he’s getting a little more personal, reflecting on loss, the passage of time and, via its computer-referencing title, the ever-present possibility of disaster.
Thrashy hardcore band Drain signed to Epitaph in 2021 and put out the great new single “Watch You Burn.” 2022 came and went with no new album, but 2023 is feeling like the year, and our bodies are ready.
Boston band Drop Nineteens only existed for a few years in the early ’90s, but their debut album, Delaware, is one of the great American shoegaze records of the scene’s original era, and for that matter, “Winona” is one of the great shoegaze singles, period. Out of the blue last January, frontman Greg Ackell announced the group were getting back together to make a new album. In December they shared a new photo of the reunited group, writing, “We’re looking forward to seeing YOU in 2023.”
Thought you might be curious to see the first shot of us together in 30ish years. We’re looking forward to seeing YOU in 2023…
Photo: Larissa Doronina pic.twitter.com/iruDE0SHtk
— Drop Nineteens Official (@drop_nineteens) December 9, 2022
Speaking to Variety in the fall, Dua Lipa said her next album has “taken a complete turn as I’ve carried on working, and I really feel now that it’s starting to sound cohesive. So I’m going to keep writing in the early months of the new year and see where that takes me.” She adds, “The album is different — it’s still pop but it’s different sonically, and there’s more of a lyrical theme. If I told you the title, everything would make sense — but I think we’ll just have to wait.”
Experimental pop artist Eartheater stayed busy in 2022 with the deluxe edition of her 2019 mixtape Trinity, and she recently told Numero that she’s currently busy with her upcoming sixth album, which is expected in spring of this year. You never know what you’re gonna get with Eartheater, but you can be sure that it’s gonna be worth listening to.
Every Time I Die offshoots
Every Time I Die are sadly no more, but it looks like we’re getting two new projects from the band’s former members. Vocalist Keith Buckley has a new band in the works, and the other recent members have a project together as well.
Everything But the Girl
Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt have been a couple since the early ’80s, but haven’t made an Everything But the Girl album since 1999’s Temperamental. Fans had long assumed that would be their last, but the duo surprised everyone last fall by announcing that they had finished a new EBTG album and it would be out in spring 2023. “We never imagined at the start of 2022 that this would happen, and yet here we are,” they wrote. Will it continue in the dance-oriented direction of the last two albums, or be more of a return to their jazzy beginnings? We can’t wait to find out, and it looks like we won’t have to wait long:
Fever Ray – Radical Romantics
due 3/10 via Mute
There are lots of notable guests on the new album from Fever Ray, including Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, but the most exciting is arguably Karin Dreijer’s brother and The Knife partner, Olof, making this a bit of a reunion. Not that we need anyone but Karin, whose singular, compellingly creepy vibe is all over early singles “What They Call Us” and “Carbon Dioxide.”
The Folk Implosion
Lou Barlow and John Davis’ ’90s-era group Folk Implosion, best known for their left-field hit single “Natural One,” announced in July 2021 that they were getting back together for their first new music together in over two decades. They dropped the Feel It If You Feel It EP in April 2022, at which time they said there were another 11 tracks that were on their way to being finished.
The Gaslight Anthem
The Gaslight Anthem returned to “full time status” with a tour last year, and an album is expected this year. “I still have the belief that maybe we haven’t written our best songs yet,” Brian Fallon recently told NJ Monthly. “And I really think that we should still be trying to do that. I’m not saying that it could maybe top everything we’ve done, but to sit on the shelf alongside of what we’ve done and be worthy of that. That’s the goal for me, to make something that I feel I can be as proud of as any of the other records.”
Gaz Coombes – Turn the Car Around
due 1/13 via Hot Fruit Recordings / Virgin
While Gaz Coombes spent the last couple years reuniting with Supergrass, he’s now getting back to his solo career; Turn the Car Around completes the trilogy started with 2015’s Matador and 2018’s The World’s Strongest Man. “Turn The Car Around is a record that I’ve been building up to for the last seven years,” says Coombes, adding the album “captures the ups and downs of modern life and all the small print in between.” Early tastes like “Don’t Say It’s Over” show he hasn’t lost his touch one bit.
Guided by Voices – La La Land
due 1/26 via GBV Inc
Nothing slows Robert Pollard, who is so prolific you’ve can’t call it a streak — it’s just the way he operates. La La Land is Guided by Voices’ 37th studio album, and the current lineup of the band have been firing on all cylinders for a few years now, so we expect this one to keep that up. And if for some reason this one falters, there will probably be another record in a couple months.
The HIRS Collective – We’re Still Here
due 3/24 via Get Better
With guest appearances from members of My Chemical Romance, Thursday, Converge, Touche Amore, Garbage, Anti-Flag, Circa Survive, Paint It Black, Gouge Away, Thou, Screaming Females, Melt Banana, The Locust, La Dispute, Fucked Up, Full of Hell, and more, how could we not be anticipating the new HIRS album?
Home Is Where
After winning us over with the Neutral Milk Hotel-inspired emo of 2021’s I Became Birds, Home Is Where said they were heading in a heavier direction and showed that off on 2022’s great split with Record Setter. Near the end of the year, they confirmed that LP2 was ready.
home is where lp2 is mixed and mastered
— Home Is Where (@homeiswhereband) November 26, 2022
In the four years since Philly death metal greats Horrendous released a new album, their whole subgenre blew up in a huge way, and now they’re back to re-stake their claim. Speaking to Decibel, guitarist/vocalist Matt Knox said, “If [2018’s] Idol could be compared to a Sisyphean climb up the mountain, this album feels to me to be the victory celebrate at the peak–the grand tossing away of the stone.”
Rising rapper Ice Spice released two of 2022’s best singles — “Munch (Feelin’ U)” and “Bikini Bottom” — and at the end of the year she treated fans to one more song, “In Ha Mood,” and said “project otw.”
Janelle Monae has been keeping busy with their acting career since releasing 2018’s excellent Dirty Computer, but they’ve still found time to work on a follow-up, and it’s due out this year. Talking to NME about whether new material might surface soon, Janelle said, “You will get new music because I now have a clone. That clone does all of my music, and I have another clone for acting. I’m not going to tell you if it’s me or not. They’re in the studio right now!”
Jessie Ware returned in 2022 with the great new single “Free Yourself,” which she called “the beginning of a new era for me.” It’s also the first single from her upcoming fifth album, which will hopefully arrive this year.
With a new label home at Century Media and the great new single “An Offering to the Night” out now, it shouldn’t be long before we get the details on heavy hardcore band Jesus Piece’s sophomore LP.
Kelela – Raven
due 2/10 via Warp
Experimental electronic and R&B artist Kelela will release her first album since her 2017 debut LP this year, and the singles have been some of her best songs yet.
John Cale – Mercy
due 1/20 via Double Six / Domino
The Velvet Underground co-leader John Cale will turn 81 shortly after the release of Mercy, his first solo studio album of “pop” music in a decade, but he doesn’t appear to be slowing down, creatively. The album finds him working with Animal Collective, Weyes Blood, Sylvan Esso, Laurel Halo, Tei Shi, Actress, and Fat White Family — not to mention regular collaborator Nita Scott — and the first two singles from the album are just as witty and adventurous as you’d hope from one of the most influential artists of the last 60 years.
Not long before The Killers released their 2022 single “Boy,” Brandon Flowers told NME that a “full record will probably be early next year,” and that they were working with producers Shawn Everett and Stuart Price.
Metallic hardcore greats Knocked Loose haven’t released a full-length album since 2019’s A Different Shade of Blue, but they showed off their continued evolution on their 2021 EP A Tear in the Fabric of Life and they’ve been talking about a new LP, which hopefully arrives this year.
Ladytron – Time’s Arrow
due 1/20 via Cooking Vinyl
Having made a successful comeback with their excellent 2019 self-titled album (their first in seven years), synthpop band Ladytron are staying in the motorik groove for their seventh long-player. If compelling sneak peeks “City of Angels” and “Faces” are any indication, they are maintaining a “don’t fix what ain’t broke” attitude that is working for them.
Lana Del Rey – Did You Know That There’s A Tunnel Under Ocean Blvd
due 3/10 via Interscope
Lana Del Rey will make her return this year, and judging by the album’s gorgeous, sweeping title track, her creative hot streak is not ending anytime soon.
Liv.e – Girl In The Half Pearl
due 2/10 via In Real Life
LA-via-Dallas neo-soul singer Liv.e’s sophomore album comes out in February, and recent singles “Wild Animals” and “Ghost” show off different and very appealing sides of her.
UK shoegazy metal band Loathe put out “Dimorphous Display” off their upcoming album back in early 2022, and still no word on things like title and release date, but we’re keeping our fingers crossed for this year.
Following 2019’s ambient DSVII and 20216’s underwhelming Junk, we’re hoping Anthony Gonzalez’s next M83 record will be a return to the expansive, anthemic synthpop he’s best known for and was last evident on 2011’s Hurry Up We’re Dreaming. While no official announcement has been made about a new album, M83 started sharing teasers in late December and looks like we’ll know something soon enough.
Since releasing their fantastic third full-length, Patience, in 2019, Mannequin Pussy have followed it with a great EP, Perfect, in 2021, and a new single from vocalist Missy Dabice and guitarist Maxine Steen’s Rosie Thorne side project last year. The band is currently at work on a new record, which Missy told Spin “is going to be a horny album.”
Meg Baird – Furling
due 1/27 via Drag CIty
For her first solo studio album in seven years, Meg Baird is stretching her wings and moving beyond the more pure folk of previous solo records, incorporating drums, synthesizers, and vibraphone into her sound — not to mention elements of shoegaze and trip hop. As usual, Meg’s longtime collaborator and Heron Oblivion bandmate Charlie Saufley lends a hand, but here she also worked with Tim Greene (Bikini Kill, Nation of Ulysses) , Papercuts’ Jason Quever, and Heba Kadry (Bjork, Beach House) to help her explore new expansive territory.
R.E.M. frontman Michael Stipe has been threatening to make a solo album for a long time, but it became more than just talk when in 2019 he released his debut solo single, “Your Capricious Soul.” 2023 could actually be the year he delivers the whole thing. “I’m collaborating with a bunch of different musicians and each of those songs, if I get my way, which I think I will because I’m paying for it, will be very different,” Stipe told American Express’ digital magazine, Departures, in November. “I have no management. I have no label. For the first time in my adult life, I don’t have a contract with anyone except myself. So I get to do whatever I want. Anyway, there will be a visual representation for each of the songs, and it should come together next year.”
Militarie Gun signed to Loma Vista and released All Roads Lead to the Gun (Deluxe) last year, and when we had vocalist Ian Shelton on our podcast, he shed some light on the band’s upcoming, as-yet-unannounced new album.
Mozart Estate – Pop-Up! Ker-Ching! And The Possibilities Of Modern Shopping
due 1/27 via Cherry Red
Lawrence, who helmed Felt in the ’80s and Denim in the ’90s, is back with a new album and a new moniker, Mozart Estate, which is a tweak to his previous project, Go-Kart Mozart. Pop-Up! Ker-Ching! And The Possibilities Of Modern Shopping further refines his unique worldview that combines popstar dreams with the harsh realities of being a cult artist, as only Lawrence could.
Miss Grit – Follow the Cyborg
due 2/24 via Mute
NYC-based, Korean-American musician Miss Grit signed to Mute last year, and their debut full length for the label, which features Stella Mozgawa (Warpaint), Aron Kobayashi Ritch (Momma), and Pearla, explores the life of a cyborg. The first two singles make a big impression with spiky electric guitar leading the spacey instrumentation, and they have our hopes high for the rest of the album.
Nakhane – Bastard Jargon
due 3/3 via BMG
South African artist Nakhane calls Bastard Jargon “an existential sex album,” adding, “Almost every song on it has some kind of wink towards sex. It’s not necessarily a seductive, come to me, bedroom eyes kind of sex – it’s much more inquisitive, psychological sex.” It features all four songs from their very good Leading Lines EP, which has contributions from Perfume Genius, Nile Rodgers, and more.
Nation of Language
NYC group Nation of Language made great leaps with their 2021 sophomore album, A Way Forward, which took their early-’80s influences –- from Talking Heads to Depeche Mode –- and made them their own. The group also toured the album for most of 2022 and now have more dates, including their biggest headline shows of their career, coming up this spring. Surely something new will be in the works by then.
The National have had a new album in the works for a little while now; in a February interview with The Up Coming, Aaron Dessner said “it kind of feels back to the classic National sound,” and later in the year they played new songs live on their summer tour, and released the Justin Vernon-featuring “Weird Goodbyes.” It seems the time is ripe for them to officially announce a new record, and we’re hoping for this year.
Olivia Rodrigo only released her fantastic, world-conquering debut, SOUR, in 2021, but signs point to her following it with more new music this year. She sent a video to fans who had her as their #1 artist on their Spotify Wrapped for the year, saying “I’m so excited for next year and all of the new things, and new music, that 2023 will bring.” Earlier in 2021, she’d also talked to Billboard about working again with her SOUR collaborator Dan Nigro on new songs, saying, “I have a title for my next album and a few songs.” Hopefully 2023 is the year we hear them.
One Step Closer
Hardcore band One Step Closer got more melodic than ever on their new single “Dark Blue,” and if that’s a sign of what’s to come, consider us very intrigued.
Orbital – Optical Delusion
due February 17 via London
Phil and Paul Hartnoll spent much of 2022 celebrating Orbital’s 30th anniversary, and now they are looking forward. Optical Delusion is the techno duo’s 10th studio album and first in five years, and nearly every track is a collaboration with other artists, including Sleaford Mods, Penelope Isles and Anna B Savage. On the songs they’ve shared so far, especially Sleaford Mods collab “Dirty Rat,” the Hartnolls sound invigorated and modern without losing that Orbital sound.
Paramore – This Is Why
due 2/10 via Atlantic
So far, two songs are out from Paramore’s highly anticipated sixth album This Is Why. They’re both very different, and they feel like the culmination of everything Paramore have ever done, from their angst-fueled early days to the new-wavey After Laughter, as well as clear steps forward.
Peter Gabriel – i/o
due TBA via Real World
One of the biggest artists of the ’80s and ’90s, Peter Gabriel hasn’t released an album of new songs since 2002’s Up. That changes this year with i/o and a subsequent tour. “It’s been a while and I am now surrounded by a whole lot of new songs and am excited to be taking them out on the road for a spin,” Peter says in a statement. “Look forward to seeing you out there.” Your first taste is “Panopticom,” which features electronics by Brian Eno.
PJ Harvey has been busy with her extensive vinyl reissue series, but with that wrapped up, we’re excited to hear she’s working on new music, tentatively due out in the summer. “I’m very pleased with it,” she told Rolling Stone. “It took a long time to write to get right, but at last I feel very happy with it.”
Polo G continues to churn out great singles that put a somber, melodic spin on Chicago drill, and he confirmed that his next album is arriving this year.
Portrayal of Guilt
After releasing two albums and a split with Chat Pile in 2021, the great screamo/metal band Portrayal of Guilt had a much quieter 2022, but they promised a 2023 album in a since-deleted tweet, so that’s hopefully promising!
Power Trip have chosen to keep going after the tragic 2020 death of vocalist Riley Gale, and while we haven’t heard who’s taking over on vocals, we’re very interested in hearing what they do next.
R. Ring – War Poems, We Rested
due 1/27 via Don Giovanni
Kelley Deal stays busy these days, what with The Breeders and Protomartyr, but she’s also got R. Ring which is her project with Mike Montgomery. For their first album in six years, Kelley and Mike enlisted Laura King of Bat Fangs, as well as Lori Goldston on cello and Joe Suer on vibraphone. The two songs they’ve shared so far, “Still Life” and “Def Sup,” are pretty different from each other but equally awesome in their own ways.
Quasi – Breaking the Balls of History
due 2/10 via Sub Pop
Breaking the Balls of History, which is a stupendous title for an album, is Quasi’s first album in a decade, and finds Sam Coomes and Janet Weiss’ energized and inspired in the wake of the last few turbulent years. “When you’re younger and in a band, you make records because that’s what you do,” Sam says. “But this time, the whole thing felt purposeful in a way that was unique to the circumstances.” Janet adds, “There’s no investing in the future anymore. The future is now. Do it now if you want to do it. Don’t put it off. All those things you only realize when it’s almost too late. It could be gone in a second.”
OG shoegazers Ride spent most of 2022 looking back, with a UK tour belatedly celebrating the 30th anniversary of their debut album, Nowhere, and reissuing their early records on vinyl and CD. They’ll be doing a little more nostalgia indulgence this year — they’re touring North America with The Charlatans this winter — but have also been working on their third post-reformation album.
R9 has been on our annual anticipated list multiple times, but it really seems like Rihanna season is actually here this time. She finally put out new music this past fall on the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever soundtrack, and she’s playing the Super Bowl Halftime Show–always a good sign that a new album is brewing.
Robert Forster – The Candle and the Flame
due 2/3 via Tapete
Go-Betweens cofounder Robert Forster says The Candle and the Flame is his most personal album yet. Part of that is because his whole family plays on it, including wife Karin Bäumler (who was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2021), along with daughter Loretta and son Louis (formerly of The Goon Sax). “Ever since we met, Karin and I have sung and played music together in our home, and in these dark days we turned to music once again,” Robert says. As they recorded on “good days” around Karin’s treatment, they worked quickly, making for a very of-the-momement album. “We had to record ‘live’, catching magical moments and going for ‘feel’. And that became the sound of the album.”
Ryuichi Sakamoto – 12
Riyuichi Sakamoto’s first album since 2017, 12 was recorded over the last two-and-a-half years while battling cancer, with the tracks serving as a “sound diary” to the time — each song is named after a day. “After I finally ‘came home’ to my new temporary housing after a big operation, I found myself reaching for the synthesizer,” Sakamoto says. “I had no intention of composing something; I just wanted to be showered in sound.”
SBTRKT came out of hibernation in 2022 with a string of new singles–his first in six years–and he confirmed that his third full-length is due in 2023. The new songs have been genuinely great, and we can’t wait to hear what else he’s got up his sleeve.
Santa Cruz hardcore band Scowl may have released their debut album How Flowers Grow in 2021, but 2022 was really their year. They toured constantly, played some truly iconic sets, and won over so many new people in the process. No concrete word on their next release but 2023 seems likely.
shame – Food For Worms
due February 24 via Dead Oceans
For their third album, Food for Worms, English post-punks shame enlisted mega-producer Flood (U2, Nine Inch Nails, PJ Harvey) to help sharpen their focus and broaden their scope. Frontman Charlie Steen called it “the Lamborghini of shame records.” Hopefully it cost less to make than a Lamborghini.
Shoegaze greats Slowdive started teasing their fifth LP in 2020, with subtle Instagram posts from singer/guitarist Rachel Goswell. Things then went quiet, but as the band began playing live again in 2022, with dates for 2023 as well, this looks to be the year.
slowthai – Ugly
Not much info is out there, but we know that slowthai’s third album is done and has a title.
Sparks – The Girl is Crying in Her Latte
due May 26 via Island
Ron and Russell Mael are still riding on what is Sparks’ most-high profile era in ages, thanks to two acclaimed 2021 films: Edgar Wright’s career-spanning documentary The Sparks Brothers and Annette, their musical with director Leos Carax. They will keep the momentum going with The Girl is Crying in Her Latte, their 26th album, that has them back on Island Records who released such ’70s Sparks classics as Kimono My House. Still more to look forward to: another movie musical, X Crucior.
Steve Mason – Brothers & Sisters
due 3/3 via Double Six / Domino
“To me, this record is a massive ‘Fuck you’ to Brexit,” says former Beta Band leader Steve Mason about his fifth solo album. While politics are at the forefront of Mason’s mind, he still has a way with a groove informed by Britpop, trip hop and krautrock, as first single “No More” shows.
Sunny War – Anarchist Gospel
due 2/3 via New West
Singer/songwriter Sunny War signed to New West Records for her next album, and the singles are great examples of her gritty, soulful style of Americana. The album was produced by Andrija Tokic (Alabama Shakes, Hurray for the Riff Raff, etc), and it features appearances by Jim James of My Morning Jacket, Allison Russell, David Rawlings, Jack Lawrence of the Raconteurs, and more.
San Jose metallic hardcore band Sunami put out an awesome promo last year, in advance of their forthcoming debut full-length for Triple B/DAZE. We’re still patiently waiting for the album, which hopefully gets an official release date in the next 12 months.
Superdrag, who haven’t released a new album in over a decade, tweeted this:
What if we made our best LP in 2023?
— Superdrag (@superdrag_sound) November 17, 2022
Nigerian singer Tems has two great EPs; collaborations with Beyoncé, Drake, Future, Wizkid, and Disclosure; a Bob Marley cover on the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever soundtrack; and more. Now, she’s prepared to release her first full-length in 2023.
The Tubs – Dead Meat
due 1/13 via Trouble in Mind
Joanna Gruesome broke up in 2017, but many of the core members continue to work together. Owen ‘O’ Williams and George ‘GN’ Nicholls lead The Tubs, who released the excellent Names EP last year and are now set to drop their first full-length. Like that EP, the album finds The Tubs mixing folk and strident indie rock in very catchy ways, and it also features vocals from JG’s Alana McArdle (who is in Ex-Vöid with Owen) on a number of tracks, making for even more of a reunion.
While we’re still waiting on details like a title and release date, Meg Remy definitely has a new U.S. Girls album the works, and we already got two songs from it in 2022. Unlike 2020’s Heavy Light which was a full band record made with members of Badge Epoque Ensemble, Meg’s been working with a bunch of different collaborators, including Alex Frankel of Holy Ghost! on last year’s fantastic “So Typically Now.”
Unknown Mortal Orchestra
UMO fed the promise of a new album with single “I Killed Captain Cook,” which dropped back in October. There’s still been no official word, but with a North American tour kicking off in March, here’s hoping we’ll have an update soon.
The WAEVE – S/T
due 2/3 via Transgressive
The musical pairing of Blur guitarist Graham Coxon and former Pipette Rose Elinor Dougall is unexpected, as is the music they make together as The WAEVE, which doesn’t sound like anything either have done before. The album also gives Coxon a chance to show off his impressive saxophone skills alongside his always inventive fretwork.
We put Denver black metallers Wayfarer on a list of albums we were anticipating in 2022 after they signed to Century Media, but they never put out an album in 2022, and now they’re eyeing a fall release for the followup to 2020’s great A Romance with Violence, which according to Decibel is coming via their former label, Profound Lore. The band told Decibel over email that they’re still working on the album, and, excitingly, Arthur Rizk is producing.
Wednesday signed to Dead Oceans in September, and they announced the signing along with the release of the grungy, anthemic, eight-and-a-half minute “Bull Believer,” one of the best indie rock singles of last year. It’s got our hopes very high for a new LP.
In mid-2022, Wet Leg joked to NME that their second album was already “in the bag. Bish bash bosh.” When pressed for details, though, they backtracked a bit, telling NME in October that they’re actually still writing it. They did offer some predictions, saying LP#2 will be “like the last one, but longer, bigger, better, faster, stronger and more fluorescent.”
Yo La Tengo – This Stupid World
due 2/10 via Matador
For their first album in five years, beloved Hoboken indie rock greats Yo La Tengo produced themselves for what they’re calling their most live-sounding album in a long time. Given the revered reputation of the trio’s live shows, that is a very good thing.
Young Fathers – Heavy Heavy
due 2/3 via Ninja Tune
There’s really no easy way to describe the genre-blurring Scottish trio Young Fathers, but it’s very easy to like them. The singles from their upcoming album Heavy Heavy have been very different, and very great.
Trevor Powers retired the Youth Lagoon moniker in 2016 and since released two albums under his own name, but now Youth Lagoon is coming back.
Zach Bryan – Writers and Fighters
Zach Bryan just does not slow down. The rising country star released one of 2022’s best albums with the 34-song American Heartbreak, and last year also saw the release of the 9-song Summertime Blues EP, a two-song single, and a live album. On top of all that, he confirmed the title of his next album, which is expected this year.
hey guys, done dropping for awhile, besides the live album, working on a new project!
album for 2023 is called ‘Writers and Fighters’ and I have never been more excited for anything in my life
— Zach Bryan (@zachlanebryan) November 30, 2022
Zulu – A New Tomorrow
due 3/3 via Flatspot
Zulu are one of the most exciting newer hardcore bands around, and the lead single off their upcoming debut album is truly killer. Soul Glo’s Pierce Jordan, Truth Cult’s Paris Roberts, and Playytime’s Obioma Ugonna all appear on the LP, which you can pre-order on limited transparent yellow vinyl.
100 gecs – 10,000 gecs
due 3/17 via Dog Show/Atlantic
Pioneering hyperpop duo 100 gecs finally have a release date set for their long-awaited sophomore album, 10,000 gecs. We have no idea what to expect from it, but we can probably be sure it’ll be as over-the-top as possible.
200 Stab Wounds
Rising old school-style death metallers 200 Stab Wounds recently inked a deal with Metal Blade Records, and their new single “Masters of Morbidity” is one of their best songs yet. We’re sure to get even more brutality from LP2 when it arrives.