Great new music releases for 2013: New album from the Strokes and more
This is “What’s Making Me Happy This Week,” a weekly feature inspired by the Pop Culture Happy Hour podcast. It’s pretty self-explanatory.
What’s Making Me Happy This Week is the release of the Strokes 5th album, Comedown Machine, which I received on vinyl in the mail this past Monday and haven’t stopped spinning ever since. I’m especially excited because not only is every new Strokes release a holiday in my little world, but also because Comedown Machine is the first in a string of new album releases that I’ve been eagerly anticipating for quite some time.
2013 has already seen a few releases that are definitely on my must-listen list. In addition to the Strokes, we also got new albums from Wavves and Depeche Mode this past Tuesday. Before that there were several other albums that will eventually make their way onto my iPhone (if they haven’t already), including the new releases from the Men (my review here), Shout Out Louds, Tegan & Sara, and Ra Ra Riot, and a debut from FIDLAR. If you like legendary artists with new bands (which isn’t necessarily my thing but may be yours), you got new material from Trent Reznor’s How to Destroy Angels, Thom Yorke’s Atoms for Peace, and Thurston Moore’s Chelsea Light Moving. There were even long (sometimes very long) awaited new albums from My Bloody Valentine, David Bowie, Johnny Marr and Nick Cave.
For me though, those are all part of your standard fare new albums and pleasant surprises that you get every year. Until Comedown Machine. The Strokes are on the very short list of bands whose new album release dates are circled on my calendar. Amazingly, there are four other such dates I have circled over the next two months (and 2 more dates TBD):
- April 16, Yeah Yeah Yeahs release Mosquito, their first album since 2009 and featuring some of the freakiest cover art I’ve ever seen
- April 23, Phoenix release Bankrupt!, their first album since 2009’s staggeringly great Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
- May 14, Vampire Weekend release Modern Vampires of the City, their 3rd album and first since 2010’s Contra
- May 21, The National release Trouble Will Find Me, their 6th album and first since 2010’s High Violet
- Sometime in June, MGMT will also release their 3rd album and first since 2010, which will be “even weirder” than the very weird Congratulations
In the 36 days between April 16 and May 21 four albums will be released, all of which I have been waiting for one way or another for close to three years. When things finally settle down there’s still MGMT in June and then, last but most definitely not least, a new album from Arcade Fire, who have been working together with James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem, which may just be the only way to top The Suburbs.
I’ve said before that 2010 was a peak year at the top of an upward musical cycle (and that 2009 was close). I don’t expect these new releases to approach their excellent predecessors, but just the possibility that they might has me giddy. I can’t wait to get home and listen to Comedown Machine again.
And That’s What’s Making Me Happy This Week.