If there was one thing the contributing writers, and staff, of Spinning Platters agreed on during our annual gathering to determine the best albums of the year, it was that 2013 was a bit underwhelming for music. The silver lining in what was mostly a mundane, forgettable time for music was that a lot of women broke through and achieved some well-deserved recognition. Daft Punk and Deltron 3030 returned after a near-decade hiatus and did not disappoint. Still, the fact that Miley’s antics garnered any attention, whatsoever, and were even considered “interesting” didn’t exactly bode well for collective musical output.
It’s time to move forward and hope for a better turnout these next 350-plus days (some of us are still recovering/getting acclimated, thank you). If you’ve noticed a pattern in titles such as “50 must-hear albums coming your way in 2014,” with an emphasis on the staggering figure, from other publications, it’s because, well, there are already that many hotly-anticipated releases to look forward to in the coming year. Of course, there are more to be found here because we’re delightfully (right?) exhaustive (in case you haven’t noticed our other, alternative best-of-2013 round-ups).
This list offers an alternate variation on what has already been published by the likes of SPIN and Consequence of Sound; but if there’s one thing we can all agree on, we’re stoked for the return of Beck. Not included: soundtracks, EPs, reissues, and live recordings. Special thanks goes out to Pause & Play, a wonderful, consistently updated resource for new album releases on the horizon. Without further ado, here are the anticipated links – some with videos, links to singles, and even full album streams. Enjoy.
Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks – Wig Out At Jagbags
Listen to “Cinnamon and Lesbians” here.
Rosanne Cash – The River & The Thread
A full preview of Rosanne’s first album in four years is now available for streaming, courtesy of NPR.
The Crystal Method – The Crystal Method
Stream the entire fifth album from the EDM pioneers, and their first full-length release since 2009, courtesy of The Hype Machine.
Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings – Give the People What They Want
Enjoy the video for the lead off single, “Retreat!,” at the top of this post.
Bruce Springsteen – High Hopes
Stream High Hopes, in its entirety, here.
Young The Giant – Mind Over Matter
Listen to their latest single, “Crystallized,” here and enjoy the intergalactic accompanying video.
David Crosby – Croz
The founding member of legendary bands The Byrds, Crosby Stills & Nash (& Young), and CPR returns with his first solo album in twenty years. Also, most tickets for the tour supporting Croz are already SOLD OUT. Bay Area folks, there are still some left for his double-header at Great American Music Hall.
Dum Dum Girls – Too True
Listen to “Lost Boys and Girls Club” here.
RiFF RaFF – Neon Icon
People who’ve witnessed the Houston-bred rapper live describe the experience as “life-changing.” Get a whiff of what they’re talking about here. This will be his debut album, released through Mad Decent.
Broken Bells – After the Disco
Aka the spectacular side project consisting of Danger Mouse (Brian Burton) and The Shins’ James Mercer. Listen to “Holding on for Life,” eponymous track “After the Disco,” and more via their official site.
Sun Kil Moon – Benji
Stream “Richard Ramirez Died Today of Natural Causes” here.
Xiu Xiu – Angel Guts: Red Classroom
Jamie Stewart is the only original member of an ever-revolving line-up. They still make experimental noise worth a spin. Listen to “Stupid in the Dark,” here.
Fanfarlo – Let’s Go Extinct
Watch the trailer for their highly-anticipated third album above.
Plain White T’s – American Nights
Guided By Voices – Motivational Jumpsuit
Listen to “The Littlest League Possible” here.
Phantogram – Voices
Watch the video for the first single, “Fall in Love,” below.
Suzanne Vega – Tales from the Realm of the Queen of Pentacles
Yes, it’s the artist with *that song* (Tom’s Diner, which has been sampled hundreds of times) that won’t leave your head for days once you hear it. Still, her first album in seven years? That’s something.
Neneh Cherry – Blank Project
Robyn is a guest, Four Tet is producing: her first album in sixteen years certainly doesn’t look like it will disappoint. Listen to “Blank Project” here.
The Notwist – Close to the Glass
Listen to the title track from the underrated German indie rockers here.
St. Vincent – St. Vincent
Who else could hold their own in the presence of David Byrne? Not many. Stream “Birth in Reverse” and “Digital Witness” here.
Yellow Ostrich – Cosmos
Listen to the first single, “Shades,” here.
Drive-By Truckers – English Oceans
The 12th release from the Southern rock mainstays took a mere 13 days to record.
Imogen Heap – Sparks
Fun fact: if you order the box set, you’ll secure your place on the album’s artwork. That’s a tangible incentive for a true superfan.
We Are Scientists – TV En Francais
Elbow – [Title TBA]
Metronomy – Love Letters
Premature prediction: if any of the tracks on Metronomy’s fourth album are half as catchy as the first single (video above), “I’m Aquarius,” this could be a serious contender for one of 2014’s best albums.
Black Lips – Underneath the Rainbow
Listen to “Boys in the Wood” here.
Tycho – Awake
Listen to the eponymous first single here.
Future Islands – Singles
Following up 2011’s On the Water, it’s their first release for 4AD.
The Hold Steady – Teeth Dreams
More to look forward to, most info still TBA
Adele – [Title TBA]
AgainST – [Title TBA]
Beck – Morning Phase (due sometime in February)
Built to Spill – [Title TBA]
Belle and Sebastian – [Title TBA]
Chromeo – White Women
Conor Oberst – [Title TBA]
Damon Albarn – [Title TBA]
Death Cab for Cutie – [Title TBA]
Death From Above 1979 – [Title TBA]
The Decemberists – [Title TBA]
Ed Harcourt – Back Into the Woods
Foo Fighters – [Title TBA]
Foster the People – [Title TBA]
Frank Ocean – [Title TBA]
Grimes – [Title TBA]
Interpol – [Title TBA]
Joanna Newsom – [Title TBA]
Kanye West – [Title TBA]
Kendrick Lamar – (Kanye’s tour mate is releasing his highly-anticipated sophomore album.)
Kylie Minogue – [Title TBA]
Liars – [Title TBA]
Lily Allen – [Title TBA]
My Morning Jacket – [Title TBA]
Pharrell Williams – [Title TBA]
The New Pornographers – [Title TBA]
The Postal Service – [Title TBA]
Real Estate – [Title TBA]
Robyn & Röyksopp – [Title TBA] (Read more about their studio collaboration and tour here.)
Run the Jewels – Run the Jewels 2
Ryan Adams – [Title TBA]
Sharon Van Etten – [Title TBA]
Sia – [Title TBA]
Spoon – [Title TBA]
Tori Amos – Unrepentant Geraldines
Thee Oh Sees’ – [Title TBA]
tUnE-yArDs – Sink-o (tentative title)
TV on the Radio – [Title TBA]
Wu Tang Clan – A Better Tomorrow
Wye Oak – [Title TBA]
Is there anything you’re looking forward to that wasn’t mentioned on this list? Please share!