Coldplay, Jack White, Mumford & Sons, Muse, the Black Keys – of the countless rock albums to come down the sonic pike in 2012, the most recent releases from these key artists were among the precious few to rise to the top over the past 12 months, all earning GRAMMY nominations for 2013.
Perusing the long line-up of albums scheduled to drop between now and 2014, we’ve compiled this very short list of the five truly anticipated albums rock fans will be most excited to see hit shelves (digital and otherwise) in 2013.
While we have yet to discover which new acts will crash the party this year like emerging artists such as the Lumineers and Imagine Dragons did in 2012, the odds are high in favor of the following bands getting your money upon release of their new long-playing releases.
Blink-182 – There is no more anticipated rock release scheduled for this year than the upcoming full-length from the SoCal pop-punk legends, which will be the band’s seventh studio album. The guys are currently writing new songs for the as-yet-untitled LP, with an ideal release date before the end of the year. But the guys are making no promises just yet. “Ideally, it would be out by the end of 2013, but you never know when you get into the studio how long things are going to take,” Blink’s bassist/singer Mark Hoppus told CBS Local in an exclusive interview last October. “Left to our own devices we would take forever to record an album, because we love experimenting and we like changing things around and trying different ideas.” In the meantime, fans can satiate themselves with the recently released Blink 182 Christmas EP, Dogs Eating Dogs.
Queens of the Stone Age – It’s coming up on a full six long, quiet years since this hard-rocking outfit led by Josh Homme released Era Vulgaris back in 2007. Far too long for the band’s rabid fan base, as news of a forthcoming LP from QOTSA has been burning up the internet lately. Kicked off by the announcement that Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl will play drums on the record (which Homme promises will be out before his band headlines the Download Festival in England this June), fan fervor has only increased with subsequent revelations that the album will also feature appearances from former QOTSA bassist Nick Oliveri, Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor and even Jake Shears, singer for the flamboyant dance-pop band Scissor Sisters. Most recently, Homme penned a handwritten letter to UK music mag MOJO regarding the release, claiming that it “sounds like you’re running in a dream.”
The Black Keys – These Ohio blues brothers are still riding high on the breakout success of their 2011 album El Camino, one of rock’s biggest full-length releases of 2012 and bestowed with a slew of GRAMMY nods for 2013, including Album of the Year and Best Rock Album. Instead of riding the record’s success for as long as possible, the obvious workaholics are already crafting their eighth(!) full-length, swearing up and down that the final product is “definitely” coming in 2013. “We’re going to start making a new album in January and we’re going to tour a little more in the spring,” drummer Patrick Carney told CBS Local in an exclusive interview last October. “Our plan is to have the new album done by the end of spring or earlier.” The band hopes super-producer Danger Mouse will again twiddle the knobs for this release, although his work on the forthcoming U2 album could potentially derail those plans. “That takes priority over us!” Carney added.
Arcade Fire – These Canadian indie heroes and critical darlings hit the mainstream jackpot with the release of their third studio album, 2010’s The Suburbs. The record went on to shock the world when it walked away with the Album of the Year GRAMMY in 2011, besting releases from Eminem, Lady Gaga and Katy Perry for the honors. While details are scant, the band has confirmed that the long-awaited follow-up to The Suburbs is likely to see the light of day before 2013 winds to a close. Anticipation was ratcheted even higher when the band’s manger confirmed that former LCD Soundsystem frontman James Murphy will be manning the boards on the new recordings. Arcade Fire premiered some of those new tunes during a secret Montreal gig under the moniker “Les Identiks” last year.
Depeche Mode – These ‘80s synth-pop pioneers turned ‘90s arena electro-rockers have built a dedicated and massive fan base in large part to hit albums like 1990 breakout release Violator and the 1993 follow-up, Songs of Faith and Devotion. The band set DM fan sites ablaze last fall during a press conference to announce a 2013 world tour, adding that a new album was also imminent, with songwriter Martin Gore terming the new songs as a cross between the beloved Violator and Songs of Faith and Devotion records. The still-untitled LP is scheduled for a March 2013 release on Columbia Records, with U.S. tour dates to follow.
-Scott T. Sterling, CBS Local