While certainly not a bad year for music, 2008 indubitably failed to match the standards set by 2007's veritable torrent of great albums. As such, we can look to 2009 with a renewed sense of optimism, hoping that so many of the great bands that released alums in 2007 will follow a two-year development cycle and bequeath listeners with some new music. The following list will attempt to detail my ten most anticipated albums of 2009, which, in conjunction with Gary D.'s list, should give the reader an idea of what to expect throughout the year. So, without further ado...
1. dredg, March 24
The California-based quartet has been hard at work on their fourth studio release for the better part of two years, and the leading indicators look promising. dredg has sampled several new tracks live, such as "Waterbourne", "Saviour", and "Ireland", and its clear that all of them invoke the melodic instrumentation and artsy sheen that dredg is known for. Look for the band to go on a supporting tour whenthe album hits stores in March.
2. Poison the Well, April
Metalcore outfit Poison the Well is not a band to rest on its laurals, so as is the case with every new PTW release, expect a lot progression and a new sound. The band relecently released a two song EP debuting "New Fast" and "Purple Sabbath", cuts that seem to consolidate the sound of 'You Come Before You' and 'Versions' into a concotion of unsettling riffs and scathing vocals.
3. Portugal. The Man, Fall
Very few bands churn out albums quicker than the Wasilla, Alaska-based (shared residency with Sarah Palin) Portugal. The Man, who are set to release their 4th LP in as many years come late 2009. P.TM frontman John Gourley ensures that the band will continue to evolve, and is going into the studio with some experimental ideas that will hopefully result in another original album.
4. The Limousines, Summer
The Limousines, the brainchild of ex-Strata lead singer Eric Victorino and Italian beatman nozebleed, posted downloadable demos on their MySpace throughout 2008 in attempt showcase the lovable brand of Postal Service-esque electronica that the band is attempting to create. The Limousines should be new to most, so check out "Very Busy People", "To Be Adored", and "New Years Resolution", tracks that are sure to be on the upcoming LP.
5. Telescreen, Spring
Just featured in our "Underground Artist of The Week" segment, Telescreen plans on extrapolating their 2007 EP 'The Solar Sea' into a full-length sometime this year. If the upcoming record is anything like that EP, fans of Codeseven-driven space rock have a lot to look forward to.
6. Deftones, Early 2009
Deftones' most recent work, dubbed 'Eros', was originally slated for release in late 2008, but was pushed back due to several mitigating circumstances, most notably bassist Chi Cheng's bout with a car-accident induced coma. Cheng is still in a coma, and I suspect that plans for the album's release will remain on hold until the situation changes. Until then, we can only salivate at the thought of another blistering release from the Southern Cali rockers.
7. Dance Gavin Dance, Summer
In a recent MySpace blog Dance Gavin Dance stated that they're hitting the studio in February in hopes of a summer release for a new album, which, Like Portugal. The Man, will be their fourth in as many years. However, the stakes are bit higher this time, considering that longtime screamer John Mess, who left the band because of a bout with lyme disease, will likely not be contributing to the upcoming record.
8. Circa Survive, Spring
Apparently tired of the solo-acoustic thing, Anthony Green is hunkering down with the rest of his Circa bandmates somewhere in Pennsylvania to record the bands third LP. In an interview with Alternative Press, Green stated "A lot of the stuff I'm hearing is way faster and more upbeat. But at the other end of the spectrum, there's this super-melodic, really atmospheric space." What exactly does that mean? Find out this spring when the album drops.
9. Isles & Glaciers, March
What do members of Chiodos, Emarosa, Circa Survive, Pierce the Veil, Receiving End of Sirens, and Sky Eats Airplane have in common? They're all collaborating in a supergroup dubbed Isles & Glaciers that plans to release a debut album in March. Little is known about group, however don't expect a fiercely experimental affair such as The Sound of Animals Fighting (Craig Owens has long talked about a hardcore side project, so this could very well be it). However, any band that could potentially feature Johnny Craig, Craig Owens, and Anthony Green as vocalists is at least worth a listen.
10. Thursday, February 17
Fresh off their split album with Envy, post-hardocre rockers Thursday are set to release their fifth studio album, 'Common Existence', on February 17th. The New Brunswick, New Jersey natives recently posted the album's first single, "Resuscitation of a Dead Man", on their MySpace and are set to headline 2009's Taste of Chaos Tour. Vocalist Geoff Rickly describes 'Common Existence' as a more lyrically mature and pragmatic record, leaving the warring (no pun intended) nature of 'War All The Time' behind in favor of a humbling look at the commonality of human experience