Every year is a big year in music, but this year has a lot on the docket. Far too much to cover entirely. So here’s a little slice of some of the year’s most exciting releases.
10. Frank Ocean – Odd Future’s most likeable member is back to croon us to the moon and let us drink among the bars. He’s had plenty of time for crafting new material since 2013, so hopefully it will be a year full of good tides from the Ocean.
9. Foxes – Foxes is actually a singular: the 24 year old British songstress Louisa Rose Allen, who had a fantastic year in 2013 with the singles “Youth,” “Echo,” and “White Coats,” which will all appear on her full length debut Glorious. Between bountiful internet love and immense talent, Foxes should be on 2014’s radar.
8. Metronomy – When weirdness is the appeal, Metronomy is the band. They return in 2014 with another compilation of moody, morose dance jams with an intellectual twist. The first single off the new Love Letters “I’m Aquarius” was first available through an app which streamed the song by pointing a smartphone towards the constellation of the same name. They’re shooting for some stellar success with this one.
7. Phantogram – Released February 18th, Voices has been heavily advertised across social media, and rightfully so if they’re most recent eponymous EP is any indication. Trippy, weird, sexy, and catchy, Phantogram does a lot of things right, and they’ll be doing it again this year.
6. St. Vincent – “I wanted to make a party record you could play at funeral.” That’s how Annie Clark, aka St. Vincent describes her new self-titled album. If for no other reason, that description makes it an album worth getting excited for. The weird, extreme, melodic passion should continue on her new record, and may well become a 2014 favorite for those who appreciate the bold side of experimental indie.
5. Manchester Orchestra – On April 1, the quintessential indie group from Atlanta will release their fourth full-length, Cope. Frontman Andy Hull calls the record a “super-aggressive guitar rock record,” which departs from the polished sound and will take some listeners by surprise
4. Bruce Springsteen – Released January 14, Springsteen’s new High Hopes will be yet one more stone in the path that he has walked to a legacy of American rock n roll tradition. At this point, it probably doesn’t matter what the man does, as he is a legend for so many people across nearly five decades. 2014 will only contribute more greatness to his name.
3. The Decemberists – 2014 brings The Decemeberists’ sixth studio record, which might bring jean jackets and calico dresses back into style. They’re known. They’re loved. They’re just good. It’s hard not to be excited about anything they do.
2. Johnny Cash – It’s been a decade since his passing, and yet, like many other musical greats, he lives on through both ubiquity, cultural influence, and the posthumous release. This year, 12 previously unheard Cash songs will be released. Thank you 2014. Show us the Cash.
1. Fleet Foxes – They may have lost a drummer to Father John Misty, but they’re still fuzzy and heart-warming. Bring on the man-choral, the angelic indie rock, the dirty hippies. Bring on the Fleet.