Preview 2009 - Albums
Hip hop big hitters making comebacks and cheeky pop tarts coming of age. That’s just the start of it, says David Pollock, as he investigates the new albums coming in 2009
The start of ‘09 sees a hip hop war brewing, with new records by some of the genre’s heaviest hitters landing on the streets. First we’ve got to survive January, though, and what more uplifting way than with Bruce Springsteen’s Working on a Dream? (Jan) Coincidentally enough, it’s out a whole week after Obama’s inauguration. Of course, this month also sees the release of Franz Ferdinand’s long-awaited third LP Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, (26 Jan) while Antony and the Johnsons’ The Crying Light (Jan) and Sepultura’s A-Lex (Jan) probably won’t sell to quite the same audience.
After that the big guns are out (not literally) for 50 Cent’s Before I Self Destruct, (Jan) Eminem’s Relapse, (Jan) Jay-Z’s last Def Jam recording before he switches to Live Nation for that stadium full of money; The Blueprint 3 (Feb), and Dr Dre’s Detox (Mar). That’ll be his last album, says Dre, and he’s waiting until the others release theirs before revealing it. And that’s not all – currently at varying states of readiness are Block Party by Missy Elliot (Spring), Busta Rhymes’ Back on my BS (Spring), and The Ecstatic, a return to musical roots for everyone’s favourite mooching character actor Mos Def (Spring). Whether Raekwon’s long-awaited Only Built 4 Cuban Linx II (Spring) finally makes it into the shops is anyone’s guess though. (If there still are shops.)
Back on this side of the Atlantic, knives and downloading fingers will be out for Lily Allen’s February-due It’s Not Me, It’s You, with rumours abounding that her one-time protégé Kate Nash will be back later in the year. Fans of proper wonky pop may enjoy the impossible-to-resist prospect of Annie’s Don’t Stop (Feb), which sees the Norwegian songbird team up with Richard X and the Girls Aloud-enabling Xenomania. Those who prefer their girls even feistier/scarier should wait and see if either Lindsay Lohan or Courtney Love comes up with their long-promised solo efforts.
Arch narcissism and hopefully not too much middle-aged angst is what we can expect from Morrissey’s Years of Refusal (Feb), while fans of elder statesmen will be pleased to hear that offerings from Teenage Fanclub (Spring) and Echo and the Bunnymen (provisionally entitled The Fountain, and apparently bearing guest vocals from Chris Martin) are due, while David Byrne’s Here Lies Love (Mar) is a concept piece about Imelda Marcos, made in collaboration with Fatboy Slim. Yes, really.
Then there’s Neil Young’s The Archives Volume 1: 1963-1972 (2 Mar) and the live The Riverboat, The Prodigy’s (2 Mar) Invaders Must Die, projected newies from U2 (Summer) and Red Hot Chili Peppers (Summer), plus War Child’s latest covers compilation Heroes (Apr). And that’s yer lot, maybe.