james debate
james debate

Sunday 17 February 2019

Welcome back to The Ephemeric's 2019 Hot List. I hope you enjoyed last week's entry covering the essential theatre of 2019. This week we will be having a look at the most exciting new music due for release in the coming year.

best anticipated new music 2018 albums hot list

In an ordinary year, coming up with 15 highly anticipated new bands and albums can be a challenge. One of the reasons why I always leave this post until the end of the Hot List is to give a little extra time for things to be announced. This year is clearly not an ordinary year, and I have had a hell of a time whittling down this list from some 30-odd down to 15. So a very exciting year ahead, with some promising new acts, some old favourites, and on this website they've been worked down to just the real creme de la creme.

So without further ado, here is our list of the top albums to keep an eye on in 2019, starting with number 15:

15. Coldplay

coldplay new album 2019 best most anticipated musicWe'll start with a easy crowd pleaser, Coldplay are apparently due to release a mysterious 8th studio album during 2019. The details are largely limited to speculation at this point, but collaborators and people close to the band have seemingly confirmed that this it happening, and sooner than we might expect.

This comes after frontman Chris Martin seemingly retired for the fiftieth time, and it will be no surprise to see that after a well earned holiday he is once again dusting off the old songwriting chops.

No name as of yet, but we are told that the sound will be "surprising", indicating a move perhaps into more unusual musical territory, or perhaps something of a more electronic nature more akin to Mylo Xyloto era Coldplay.

Release Date: TBA 2019

14. Ese and the Vooduu People (New band)

ese and the vooduu people debut album 2019 best most anticipated musicNow for the first of our highlighted newcomers of 2019. The Brixton-based electric soul band Ese and the Vooduu People are tipped for excellent things in 2019, having made waves with their powerful live show in 2018.

Having featured on many pundit's most exciting lists for the year, they will now be making the festival circuit alongside a number of prominent names, and a debut LP is expected soon after.

That album is expected sometime in the first half of 2019, but in the meantime you can enjoy some of their early tracks Dynamite and Fairytale.

Release Date: Q2 2019

13. Sea Girls (New band)

buoys panda bear pandabear new best most anticipated album 2019Another new band tipped for big things are Kent crooners Sea Girls.

This is one of those bands that seem to be everywhere all of a sudden. Having featured in BBC's Sound of 2019, as well as Spotify's curated picks of the year, they now look set to make a splash at some of the bigger festivals this summer, and a first album can't be far behind.

You can find a bunch of their work on Spotify right now, but our pick of the lot is All I Want to Hear You Say, a fine tune that showcases the band's potential. Definitely one to keep an eye on.

Release Date: February, 2019

12. Broken Bells

broken bells 2019 album best most anticipated new musicFor those who are not in the know, Broken Bells is the experimental side project of underground wunderkind turned A-list producer Danger Mouse, and The Shins frontman James Mercer.

Danger Mouse, of course, legendarily bootlegged a mash up of Jay-Z and The Beatles called The Grey Album, and has since worked with artists such as Gorillaz and Adele, formed one half of Gnarls Barkley and produced a number of his own award winning solo material.

Broken Bells will release their as yet untitled third studio album this summer, and have so far released the excellent single Shelter. While we await further details, you can remind yourself of the band's talents with previous tracks The High Road and After the Disco.

Release Date: Summer 2019

11. "Miss Universe" by Nilufer Yanya (New band)

nilufer yanya miss universe debut best new most anticipated album 2019The next newcomer for 2019 is Nilufer Yanya. The London-based singer-songwriter has been making a name for herself with a series of tender, semi-acoustic pop tracks.

A successful 2017 EP and well received single releases for The FloristBaby Luv, and Small Crimes have set expectations high, and she finds herself among many pundits' top picks for the year. A full debut album, Miss Universe, is now expected to release in March.

Her musical style is wonderfully understated, and her voice lends an R&B soulfulness to an interesting blend of influences. It will be exciting to see what comes next.

Release Date: March 2019

10. Red Hot Chili Peppers

red hot chili peppers new album 2019 best most anticipatedThe great grandpappy of American funk-rock is back, and Red Hot Chili Peppers will be releasing a 12th studio album in 2019.

First slated for release last year, the as yet untitled record was halted in early development by the disruption caused by the California fires. Now the band have announced a major tour throughout 2019, with the album finally due to release afterwards, in the latter half of the year.

One knows what to expect from this band: the sort of casually catch rock and roll music that most can appreciate, that mix of hard funk and sweet melodies. By the Way is often credited as setting the tone for modern Chili Peppers, and they have scarcely strayed from this formula since.

Release Date: Fall 2019

9. Thom Yorke

thom yorke radiohead new solo album best new anticipated music 2019Thom Yorke, best known as lead singer and writer of Radiohead, is undoubtedly British rock royalty. Such is the diversity and experimental flair of his work, that the word "rock" can only really be used here loosely, even more so when it comes to his solo career.

We last saw Yorke go solo back in 2014, and his as yet untitled 2019 release looks set to get into that most trendy of musical past-times: political commentary in the age of Trump/Brexit. Hey, if it's good enough for Sir Paul, it's good enough for you.

Expect this to drop later on in the year, and until then go ahead and enjoy last year's Suspiria, a track that presumably will not feature on the actual LP, but nevertheless might provide insight as to where Yorke is right now, musically.

Release Date: TBA 2019

8. "Good at Falling" by The Japanese House (New band)

the japanese house face like thunder good at falling debut album best new anticipated music 2019Three years in a row on the Hot List, but The Japanese House are finally about to release their debut album Good at Falling.

Theirs is a well defined sound, dreamy, layered synth pop with melancholy vocals. They've produced some really excellent work so far, songs that strike a balance between the powerful and delicate. Check out Clean and Face Like Thunder for a little taste of what they're about, as well as the first singles from the actual album Saw You in a Dream and Follow My Girl.

Hyped as one to watch by many of the industry's pundits for a number of years, we're all pretty excited as to what the final product will deliver. This album drops in March.

Release Date: March 2019

7. "Five" by White Lies

five white lies new album best most anticipated new music 2019While White Lies have perhaps never quite reached the commercial heights that were expected at the time of their much ballyhooed debut (see excellent first single Death), the ten years since To Lose My Life... has seen the Ealing-based indie rockers quietly chugging along with a series of high quality tunes and highly praised live show.

The band's fifth studio album Five is due for release in February, and they are sounding bigger and bolder than ever. Dizzying lead single Time to Give sounds like Jim Morrison came back to life and recorded a new The Doors album with its cascading riffs and rich vocals.

Release Date: February 2019

6. "Jade Bird" by Jade Bird (New band)

jade bird something american lottery new debut albums 2019 best most anticipatedA veteran of last year's Hot List, Jade Bird's debut album is finally set for release this spring, and that's a good reason to be excited.

A singer-songwriter in the style of an Amy Macdonald, but with more of the Alanis Morissette vocal rawness about her. Rolling Stone calls her the next big thing in country music. It's easy to see why when she releases great numbers like Lottery and Uh Huh.

A highly successful EP now under her belt, attention is being turned to the debut album. Definitely one to watch.

Release Date: April 2019

5. Caravan Palace

caravan palace swing house miracle new album best most anticipated music 2019The retro-fusion genre of electro-swing is exceptionally trendy these days, and no group is more well known for this style of music than Parisian musicians Caravan Palace.

Widely hailed among the trailblazers of this genre with tracks like Jolie Coquine, Lone Digger, and Rock it For Me. Their's is a sound characterised by the blending of the jazzy swing influences of the early 20th century with the electronic techniques of modern dance music.

We wouldn't expect the band to stray too much from the sound that made them a success, however first new single Miracle appears to hint at a move towards a more mainstream pop style. Let's hope they don't overdo it.

Release Date: Summer 2019

4. "Notes on a Conditional Form" by The 1975

the 1975 notes on a conditional form new album best most anticipated new music 2019 music for carsThem? Again? The 1975 released A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships only last year, and it turned out to be a great record with songs like It's Not Living if It's Not With You, and TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME. Despite this, we are already getting a follow up, Notes on a Conditional Form.

As it turns out, these two albums were originally conceived as part of a single collection, Music For Cars, which was previewed on this blog this time last year. Ultimately, and for whatever reason, the band decided to split this into two separate LPs.

All I know is that if this year's addition is as strong as the first, it will be a very fine album. However, history and common sense tells us that when a band splits an album in two, the second half rarely impresses as much as the first.

Release Date: May 2019

3. MorMor (New band)

mormor 2019 new album best new anticipated musicThe final new artist of this year's preview, Toronto songwriter MorMor has become something of an overnight sensation since the release of last year's EP Heaven's Only Wishful.

It's easy to see why. MorMor's intimate approach to songwriting is at once fresh and eclectic; see titular track Heaven's Only Wishful and Waiting on the Warmth. A full LP is now due for release in 2019. So far only the one track has been revealed, Pass the Hours and it's another very fine song indeed.

MorMor has that mix of buzz, talent and timing that seems to be lining up perfectly, and there is the real expectation that 2019 could see him take that next step into stardom.

Release Date: TBA 2019

2. "Father of the Bride" by Vampire Weekend

vampire weekend father of the bride new album 2019 best new anticipated musicOne of the year's bigger releases belongs to Vampire Weekend, returning after six years for their fourth studio album, Father of the Bride.

Critical darlings and "soundtrack kings" with a back catalogue of surprising depth and quality. Still primarily known for A-Punk from way back in the day, but with such wonderful tracks as Ottoman and Step under their belts, this is one of those easily likeable bands that one appreciates more the more you look into their work.

New album, is due for release in the Spring, and while we don't even have a full track listing yet, you can get a taste for what's to come through lead single Harmony. Just don't look at the video if you don't like bugs. Should be a good one.

Release Date: TBA 2019

1. M83

m83 hurry up dreaming new album 2019 most anticipated best new musicA cause for excitement in any year, a new album from French group M83. Is it synth? Dream-pop? Retrowave? M83's music defies outright classification, but they are most commonly associated with that dreamy neo-80s vibe, like a modern twist on a John Hughes movie soundtrack, see one of my all time favourites: Kim & Jessie.

This glib summary does a disservice to the compositional talents of Anthony Gonzalez, whose album Hurry Up, We're Dreaming remains one of the great records of recent years, with hits like Midnight City and Wait. Recently Gonzalez has even been earning plaudits for his excellent soundtrack and film score work.

However you choose to describe their work, M83 is simply one of the most compelling musical acts around, and Gonzalez one of the best technical producers in the industry. We don't yet know what form or style this new album will take, but I personally can't wait.

Release Date: TBA 2019

So there you have it folks: 2019 in music. Tune in next week for this year's final Hot List, where we look at the most exciting new movies in 2019!

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