The 2017 music year started in January with Bel Biv DeVoe released their first album in 16 years, Three Stripes. Hotly anticipated comeback albums from Kesha, Katy Perry, Haim and the Killers followed suit. The summer saw an image revamp from Taylor Swift. What will fall bring? Try these new albums on for size:
Courtney Barnett & Kurt Vile
Australian singer-songwriter Courtney Barnett made a name for herself with a deadpan, arch style. Now she teams with Kurt Vile, who could perhaps be described as the male Courtney Barnett, though he’s been around the block quite a bit longer. Now the two are releasing a collaborative album, Lotta Sea Lice, which promises to have plenty of deadpan hilarity mixed with tragedy. Just to make it more indie, their backing band includes Sleater Kinney’s Janet Weiss and Warpaint’s Stella Mozgawa. The album drops October 13.
Liam and Noel Gallagher
Liam and Noel Gallagher both have fall releases, but they are definitely never, ever getting back together. The dueling brothers now have dueling release dates. Liam’s debut album, As You Were bowed on October 6 to mostly positive reviews. The single “Wall of Glass” finds him in great form, with a pulsing back-beat giving him a decidedly 2017 feel. As for Noel, the former Oasis frontman will drop his third album with his band, The Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds. The record is called Who Built the Moon and it is slated for a November debut.
Every year needs its Manic Pixie Dream Girl and this fall’s dream girl is undoubtedly Phoebe Bridgers, who officially releases her debut album, Stranger in the Alps. Bridgers has an ethereal voice that was championed by Conor Oberst, Ryan Adams and Julien Baker, which raised expectations for the Los Angeles singer-songwriter.
The Manic Pixie Dream Girl of yesterday, Tori Amos, is back for her first album in five years, Native Invader. Amos conceived the album after a trip to North Carolina’s Smoky Mountains, shortly before her mother suffered a massive stroke. With its notes of anger, disappointment and heartbreak, it should please her most ardent fans.
Vampire Weekend’s Rostam Batmanglij is known as a musical genius, who has produced and written with Carly Rae Jepsen, Solange and Frank Ocean. Now he’s releasing his debut solo effort, Half-Light, in September. The album has all of Rostam’s sonic influences and is sure to be popular with the hipster set.
It’s hard to believe Sam Smith has just one album to his credit, since he became a mega-star, but he hasn’t released music since 2014. Now Smith is set to release his follow-up effort, The Thrill of It All, on November 13.
Julien Baker was just a 20-year old songwriter from Memphis when her debut album shocked the music world with her plaintive minimalism and lyrics that seemed far beyond her tender youth. Her second album, Turn Out the Lights, evolves her sound and thoughts even further. It arrives on October 27.
November 17 is the day that Morrissey’s newest effort, Low in High School, is released. Morrissey is always quotable, irritable and controversial and he used his hiatus to to write a novel and argue in favor of Brexit. But all that is beside the point: Low in High School has already produced a catchy single, including Spend the Day in Bed. Morrissey is fully a man of the moment on the first single, advising:
I spent the day in bed
I’m not my type, but
I love my bed
And I recommend that you
Stop watching the news!
Because the news contrives to frighten you
To make you feel small and alone
To make you feel that your mind isn’t your own