Ten albums to look forward to in 2019

By Peter Zemeske

As impressive as 2018 was for music, listeners have plenty to look forward to in this new year. It may be hard to follow up a year with releases from Blood Orange, Arctic Monkeys and Travis Scott, but a lot is in store for the next 12 months. Here are 10 albums to anticipate in 2019.

  1. “Outer Peace” by Toro y Moi: Jan. 18- Indie-favorite Toro y Moi has put out a wide range of sounds under the Toro y Moi moniker, along with other projects and collaborations. His album “Boo Boo,” released in 2017, garnered praise from critics nationwide. “Outer Peace” has already put out two funky synth-pop singles: “Freelance” and “Ordinary Pleasure.” The tracks shift in tone from “Boo Boo’s” ambience to something more danceable. “Outer Peace” is sure to be a hit amongst fans.

  2. “Buoys” by Panda Bear: Feb. 8- One of Animal Collective’s founding members Panda Bear has attracted a devoted fan base over the years with his experimental indie rock. “Panda Bear Meets the Grim Reaper,” released in 2015,  proved to be wildly popular among indie music fans. “Dolphin” is the only single on “Buoys” released so far, and if it’s any sign of what the full album will sound like, it will be more subdued and ambient than Panda Bear’s previous album. “Buoys” comes out Feb. 8.

  3. “American Football (LP3)” by American Football: Mar. 22- Emo rockers American Football have decided to record another album after their second eponymous album released in 2016. The album came as a response to the incredible support behind a reunion tour honoring their debut album’s 15th anniversary. The second LP added a slight facelift to their signature sound while keeping the eclectic sound fans loved intact. The upcoming third LP will surely keep fans hyped for the band with a sprawling single out now, called “Silhouettes.”

  4. TBA by Frank Ocean – R&B singer Frank Ocean has been fairly active recently both in releasing music and generating news. In April 2018, Ocean released an audio-only version of his 2016 visual album “Endless.” He also released a cover of “Moon River,” a song made famous by Audrey Hepburn in the 1961 film “Breakfast at Tiffany’s.” Fans of Ocean have been waiting for a follow-up to “Blonde,” released in 2016, since he teased a new album on his Tumblr page in November of 2017. Ocean’s new album doesn’t have a release date or title yet, but all signs are pointing to a 2019 release.

  5. TBA by Tame Impala- Australian psychedelic rock act Tame Impala has been pretty quiet about a follow-up to “Currents,” released in 2015. That is, until frontman Kevin Parker told Matt Wilkinson in a July 23 Beats 1 interview he’d be “very disappointed” if a new album wasn’t released by summer 2019. Since “Currents,” Parker has collaborated with Miguel, ZHU, Travis Scott and, most recently, Theophilus London. The last time listeners got a hold of original music was when the B-sides and remixes for “Currents” were released in 2017. Tame Impala were also recently announced to headline Coachella music festival so fans can expect a fourth album soon.

  6. TBA by Grimes- Electronic wizardess Grimes released a single from an upcoming album on Nov. 29 called “We Appreciate Power.” The new track departs from her synth pop and ambient tones in a big way. Heavy, distorted guitars are at the forefront of the mix, and the shift in tone is drastic compared to her earlier music. The new album has no title or release date yet.

  7. “Run the Jewels 4” by Run the Jewels- The angsty rap duo consisting of Jaime “El-P” Meline and Michael “Killer Mike” Render confirmed a fourth album is in the works Dec. 12 on Meline’s Instagram account. Run the Jewels hasn’t put out a full-length album since “Run the Jewels 3” in 2016, which was the most successful album to date. Most recently, the group had a track featured on the 2018 film “Venom’s” soundtrack called “Let’s Go (The Royal We),” released Oct. 13, 2018 and was just as in-your-face as the rest of their catalog.

  8. TBA by Vampire Weekend- Indie darlings Vampire Weekend are long overdue for a record. Their last release, “Modern Vampires of the City,” came out in 2013, a full six years ago. Good news arrived when frontman Ezra Koenig told 2018 Lollapalooza fans the band has finished recording the new album and it is being mastered. Koenig teased a working album title, “Mitsubishi Macchiato,” and that the album will be more “springtime” than its predecessor on his Instagram account.

  9. “Yandhi” by Kanye West- Kanye West has been the center of attention for what feels like an eternity now, with only some of the headlines being about his music. West posted on Twitter that the successor to “Yeezus,” released Jun. 18, 2013, will be released the night he hosted SNL, Sept. 29, 2018 and attached a 60-second clip of an unknown track but disappointed fans when he failed to live up to his promise. Kim Kardashian West later posted that “Yandhi” will be released Nov. 23. After the day came and went, the project was given an indefinite release date.

  10. “The Last Zulu” by Q-Tip- Q-Tip, most notable from the 1990’s rap group A Tribe Called Quest, has teased a new project, which will be his first in 10 years. The last update fans received about the album came in the form of a tweet sent on Jun. 16, 2018 saying, “The last Zulu aka the riot diary #ComingSoon.” Q-Tip’s last releases were 2008’s “The Renaissance” and 2009’s “Kamaal the Abstract,” which received mostly positive reviews.