Al­bums in the works

Tony Clay­ton-Lea on new re­leases to spend those vouch­ers on

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - Music -

BILLY BRAGG: TI­TLE TBC

For some, Billy Bragg is a voice from the past, an era when peo­ple ac­tu­ally cared enough about pol­i­tics and so­cial is­sues to make the lis­tener care. His new album is his first in al­most six years and con­tin­ues Bragg’s themes of fo­cus­ing on big and im­por­tant sub­jects (war on ter­ror in Oh Free­dom) and small yet sig­nif­i­cant ones (a sim­ple walk on the beach in Beachy Street). Late Jan­uary

HOT CHIP: MADE IN THE DARK

What’s all this about Hot Chip de­scrib­ing new song The Pri­vacy of our Love as a mod­ern-day Lady in Red? Pre­sum­ably, we can take this with a block of salt as they also de­scribe the first sin­gle ( Ready for the Floor) from the album as be­ing so good it will cause delir­ium and/or nausea. Fe­bru­ary

THE KOOKS

Of­ten thought as throw­away pop, UK band The Kooks have, we are as­sured, de­liv­ered a far grit­tier album than their 1.5 mil­lion-sell­ing 2005 de­but Inside In/Inside Out. With songs de­tail­ing los­ing loved ones ( Gap, Lonely Cat) and some­thing rather more pri­mal ( Do You Wanna), main song­writer Luke Pritchard wants to re­place the throw­away tag with some­thing more im­por­tant. With what we’ve heard so far we reckon he’s done just that. Fe­bru­ary NICK CAVE AND THE BAD SEEDS: DIG, LAZARUS, DIG!!! Con­sid­er­ing Nick Cave’s pen­chant for all things Bib­li­cal, it’s no sur­prise that the ti­tle refers to the man who came back from the dead. Not so Cave, of course, who has rarely been out of the frame for 30 years. This record – “an un­mit­i­gated mas­ter­piece,” boasts Cave – prom­ises to be quite dif­fer­ent to pre­vi­ous Bad Seeds al­bums, de­spite hav­ing vir­tu­ally the same per­son­nel. Fe­bru­ary 25

LAURA MAR­LING: TI­TLE TBC

Mar­ling is the dar­ling of those who reckon Kate Nash a lit­tle too com­mon for them, and Lily Allen some­thing of a washer wo­man. Fe­bru­ary

COLDPLAY: TI­TLE TBC

With pro­duc­tion by Brian Eno, it seems Coldplay’s fourth stu­dio album aims to get the band back on track with charts, fans and crit­ics. Al­ready there are sev­eral con­firmed tracks ( Ceme­ter­ies of Lon­don, Rainy Day, Poppy Fields, Vi­o­let Hill, 42). Late March

DIDO: TI­TLE TBC

This one is tak­ing its time, as it’s been on the re­lease sched­ules be­fore. Dido, how­ever, wants to get her third album just right. With mix­ing/pro­duc­ing from Jon Brion and co-writes with Brian Eno and her brother Rollo (from dance act Faith­less), what’s on the cards is yet an­other multi-mil­lion sell­ing record. Stu­dio guests in­clude Mick Fleet­wood. March

THE FEEL­ING: TI­TLE TBC

While The Arc­tic Mon­keys were rein­vent­ing indie, Lon­don five-piece The Feel­ing were aiming to re­vive the easy-lis­ten­ing if sharp pop in­stincts of the 1970s. Their ad­mirably clever de­but album, Twelve Steps and Home, sold over a mil­lion; the fol­low-up looks set to em­u­late that com­mer­cial suc­cess. March

PETER, BJÖRN & JOHN: AT THE

SEA­SIDE Those look­ing for songs to whis­tle along to here will be dis­ap­pointed – At the Sea­side is an album of in­stru­men­tals that ref­er­ence African and Brazil­ian mu­sic, Krautrock and pop. Don’t worry – an album of vo­cals/songs will be re­leased later in the year. March

ROBERT FORSTER: THE

EVAN­GE­LIST Fol­low­ing the death in 2006 of Grant McLen­nan – thereby end­ing the life of The Go-Be­tweens – Robert Forster, McLen­nan’s long­time song­writ­ing part­ner, was un­sure if he would ever record an­other album. Thank­fully, the muse struck, and his new 10-track solo album bodes well. March

VAN DER GRAAF GEN­ER­A­TOR:

TI­TLE TBC Prog rock names from the 1970s who, un­der the watch­ful, some­times bale­ful stare of leader Peter Ham­mill, cre­ated some of the most in­tense and im­pen­e­tra­ble mu­sic of the era. Now re­grouped – but hardly re­formed – the band’s new album is, says, Ham­mill, “dis­arm­ingly sim­ple and tor­tu­ously com­pli­cated.” Cau­tion ad­vised, then. March

Also on the way:

Bloc Party, Boy­zone, The Breed­ers, The Cure, Gold­frapp, Guille­mots, The Kills, Me­tal­lica, Moby, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, Cat Power, Sons and Daugh­ters, Alex Turner

From top: The Feel­ing, The Kooks and Nick Cave

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