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Added by the giraffe on 4 Jan 2011 07:11
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Most anticipated albums of 2011

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Title: Volcanic Sunlight
Release date: TBA (Spring)

Saul Williams has been one of my favorite artists since 2003 after saw him open for The Mars Volta. His poetry consistently blows my mind, and the fact that he uses a variety of soundscapes to back it rather than going for a conventional hip-hop sound has further earned my respect. His last album The Inevitable Rise & Fall of Niggy Tardust, which had music created by & was produced by Trent Reznor, is one of my favorite albums of all-time, so I'm very excited for a new album from him.

Here's a taste:
the giraffe's rating:
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA (summer/early fall)

One of my favorite bands right now, they underwent line-up changes over the past year transforming from a 3-piece to a quartet. If the new songs they posted in December are any indication this is a GOOD thing. While they're technically demo versions, the new songs show growth and sonic diversity while retaining the same vibe & sense of humor established on their previous 2 albums. That has me very very excited for the new album.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA

From the RATM wikipedia page:
During an interview with the Chilean newspaper La Tercera in October 2010, Rage frontman Zack de la Rocha confirmed that a new album is in the works, with a possibility of a 2011 release. “We are all bigger and more mature and we do not fall into the problems we faced 10 or 15 years ago. This is different and we project a lot: we are working on a new album due out next year, perhaps summer for the northern hemisphere.”

I flew all the way to California for Coachella in 2007 to see their reunion show (OK, I mostly went for Bjork, but their reunion was the 2nd most important reason I went), & the first time I saw them ranks in my top 10 shows ever. Hell yeah I'm excited for a new album from them.
the giraffe's rating:
I suppose technically this doesn't qualify since the Lips aren't recording a proper album this year, but they are releasing new music once per month as the year goes on.

Wayne Coyne told Rolling Stone:
"We'll start in late January...We'll try to release a song a month and document the song in the making, whether it takes us three or five days or a week. It's gonna be, 'We're working on a song and it's gonna be up by Friday.' We just want to [release material] some other way."

"The dilemma is whether we're going to release it on vinyl, cereal boxes or some of it on toys that we make," Coyne says, explaining that the band is planning on offering additional items to fans at the same time as downloads. "Sometimes, the music is the simplest part of any of these things. We'll be making these little videos that connect in the end to a bigger movie we'll be making next year as well. It sounds like a bunch of fuckin' work, but it's different way of thinking about songs than just holing up."

(For the full article go here.)

Sounds exciting to me!
the giraffe's rating:
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA

According to a Dec. 9th Twitter post, The Mars Volta were finishing up their 6th album. The other 5 range from brilliant & amazing to uneven yet interesting, so I'm curious to see where this one will fall among the rest. Apparently the originally planned 6th album was scrapped because Omar Rodriguez-Lopez decided it was "too boring" to release, so hopefully this one will be outstanding.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA

Nick Cave says:
“There will be a new Bad Seeds record next year. I’ve got to write one. I haven’t written anything yet, but that’s not how I go about things anyway. I have the starting date for the next record and that’s when I go into the office and start it. I’m not doing that until I’ve finished the Grinderman tour, which is amazing. The band is something else.”

The Bad Seeds' last album Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! blew me away in 2008 and I still haven't stopped listening to it. Cave's Grinderman albums released before and after it are also amazing, all of which suggests he's currently running at the top of his game. I have no doubt this album will hold a spot on my best of list at the end of 2011.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA

In December it was announced that Queens are headed into the studio to record their 6th album in hopes it will be out this year. I love Rated R, Songs for the Deaf, and Lullabies to Paralyze dearly, so I have positive expectations for this album. Hopefully the time spent in Them Crooked Vultures will bring a fresh approach to their sound from Josh Homme. We'll see.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (115 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 0
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA

When they hit the road last summer, Les Claypool announced a new Primus album for 2011. His only concern for it was figuring out how to release it now that record labels are pretty much a joke. Claypool further made an update in February...
The Primus record is nearly done. For those of you that enjoyed the new song, “Last Salmon Man“, that we played New Year’s, you’ll love the record because every song basically sounds exactly the same as that one. In fact, we just kept recording the same song over and over and I would just change a few of the lyrics around. I hear that’s the way Pink Floyd used to do it and those guys are no slouches.

(My manager got bent out of shape for me writing that last bit about the record and he wanted me to change it so, here is what I’m changing it to…)

The Primus record is nearly done. Every song is pretty much a variation of “Don’t Fear the Reaper” by Blue Oyster Cult. Everyone should buy two copies.

Anyhow, I’ll see you all in Australia.

Les (the guy that plays bass)

Primus has been one of my favorite bands since I first heard Sailing the Seas of Cheese back in 1991, so naturally I'll gladly welcome a new album from them.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: All at Once
Release date: April 26, 2011

I got their debut album in early 2009 and still listen to it regularly. The couple of times I saw them live they were great, and if any (most?) of the newer songs they played then wind up on this album it'll be a contender for album of the year for me. Hopefully their signing to Island won't affect their sound negatively.

If you haven't heard it already elsewhere, the first single can be heard on their MySpace page.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (11 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 0
Title: Let England Shake
Release date: Feb. 15

Polly Jean's albums are always worth listening to if not amazing. I read earlier today that this album may be a return to the sound she sculpted in the 90s, but I know she doesn't like repeating herself so we'll see if there's any truth to that soon.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (244 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 0
Title: Live on I5
Release date: March 22

Press release from Soundgarden:
“Happy New Year! We’re pleased to tell you that we are going to be releasing our first-ever live album taken from the west coast leg of our tour in 1996. The album will be called Live on I5 and you can get it on March 22nd. We had always intended to release this as a live record and now it’s time to unleash the fury! Watch this space for more details and pre-order information.

Tracklisting in full:

1. Spoonman
2. Searching With My Good Eye Closed
3. Let Me Drown
Tracks 1-3: Recorded live at Crosby Hall, Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar, CA – November 30, 1996
4. Head Down
Recorded live at Mercer Arena, Seattle, WA – December 18, 1996
5. Outshined
Recorded live at Crosby Hall, Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar, CA – November 30, 1996
6. Rusty Cage
Recorded live at Pacific National Exhibition Forum, Vancouver, BC, Canada – December 7, 1996
7. Burden In My Hand
Recorded live at Salem Armory, Salem, OR – December 8, 1996
8. Helter Skelter
9. Boot Camp
Tracks 8 and 9: Recorded live at Crosby Hall, Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar, CA – November 30, 1996
10. Nothing To Say
Recorded live at Mercer Arena, Seattle, WA – December 18, 1996
11. Slaves And Bulldozers
12. Dusty
13. Fell On Black Days
Tracks 11-13: Recorded live at Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center, Oakland, CA – December 5, 1996
14. Search And Destroy
Recorded live at Mercer Arena, Seattle, WA – December 18, 1996
15. Ty Cobb
Recorded live at Crosby Hall, Del Mar Fairgrounds, Del Mar, CA – November 30, 1996
16. Black Hole Sun
Recorded live at Mercer Arena, Seattle, WA – December 17, 1996
17. Jesus Christ Pose
Recorded live at Henry J. Kaiser Convention Center, Oakland, CA – December 5, 1996″

As a long-time Soundgarden fan, I'm excited by this. Many of my favorite songs of theirs are on here, and it'll be cool to hear the covers ("helter skelter" and "search and destroy") too.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (377 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 0
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA (Spring)

Last September Fiona's touring drummer announced he was working on her new album & that it would be out in Spring of this year. While I didn't like her last album as much as her first 2, I'm still excited to hear new music from her.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (241 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 0
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA

Portishead are heading into the studio to record their 4th album this year while playing shows in London in July. Says Adrian Utley:
“We’ve definitely thought about it and have had discussions about where we’re going and stuff, but it’s kind of early days and I don’t think any of us want to really hex it by putting too many rules on it, which we often do. I think we’ll just start puking up stuff and see what it sounds like.”

“We tend to disappear into a studio for a long long time and sometimes it can get pretty dark which in a way is a part of the creative process, it’s part of what makes us make the music we do, the kind of world we create around us.”

He added, “This is making it different, we’ll be playing live shows around it that might have a good influence on it, I’m hoping that it does, I’m quite excited about the whole thing.”

Hopefully it'll come out this year...Portishead are notorious for taking a long time putting out albums. Might be early 2012, so I'm trying not to be TOO excited.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: The Parallax: Hypersleep Dialogues
Release date: April 12th

BTBAM write some of the most complex, mind-blowing music out there right now. Their last few albums have seen them do some crazy genre-hopping within the course of each song (sometimes multiple genres in the same song even). Late in 2010, they posted the following video with the title "Soon":

The above footage comes from the writing/recording sessions for their upcoming new album. Given the fact that I own everything they've put out so far, you can bet I'll pick this up too.

More recently, guitarist Paul Waggoner said...
The Parallax: Hypersleep Dialogues will introduce two human characters who live in different planes of existence, separated by millions of light years. We find that each is confronted with similar personal issues that they need to reckon with. Both characters make decisions that will change their lives, and perhaps the course of the universe, forever.

Musically, it sounds like Between The Buried And Me. The record has elements of aggression, beauty, quirkiness, and pure cacophony. For “Part 1″, we establish several themes which I’m sure will be revisited in the lengthier “Part 2″, which is something we really look forward to. We love to expand on simple ideas and see where they take us.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (3 ratings) 9.3 IMDB Rating 0
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA (June)

I got into The Grates when they toured opening for We Are Scientists because their live show was brimming with infectious fun. I've seen them again since & you just can't watch them play & have a bad time. Apparently they've moved from Australia to NYC and lost their drummer to culinary school (both of which make me a little sad), but the remaining members have decided to carry on as a 2-piece with various artists filling in as needed.

Their sophomore album (Teeth Lost, Hearts Won) was an improvement over their debut, so I'm curious to see if they can top themselves again or whether they'll end up blowing it & breaking up. Fingers crossed in hopes for the former.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (249 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 0
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA

Last year Big Boi mentioned a potential Outkast album for this year in one interview, and later in the year stated that Andre 3000 will release his solo album this year. Whichever it turns out to actually be, I'll definitely check it out.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (395 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 0
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA (fall/winter)

From theprp.com...
Tool‘s Danny Carey and Justin Chancellor recently spoke with Australian radio station Triple J regarding their new album. According to Carey a title has yet to be decided upon for the effort, while the band aim to have the outing in stores by the years end.

The last 2 Tool albums were disappointing compared to the albums that preceded them, but still better than a lot of what's out there musically. Odds are I'll pick up the album out of loyalty than anything.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA

This album's 2011 release date is questionable. Band member Simon Tong announced there will be a 2nd album from the band, but with Gorillaz currently going strong who knows if Damon Albarn will have time this year to work on it. Their first album was pretty good & Tong also said the new album may be completely different soundwise so we'll see what, if anything, materializes.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: TBA
Release date: TBA (Fall)

My relationship over the years with Marilyn Manson's music has seen many ups and downs. The past 2 albums (Eat Me, Drink Me and The High End of Low) are the worst they've created, which normally would mean disinterest toward a new album. However, the new album due this fall will be released through indie label Cooking Vinyl instead of his former home Interscope Records, which may mean a renewed focus on the quality of his output. Then again, the aforementioned last 2 albums showed a lack of creativity and I've heard that his vocals are suffering (no doubt due to excessive drug use over the years) from people who have seen the band in concert in recent years...so it's just as likely the album will be terrible. Thus, I'll give the new album a chance but go into it with my expectations low.

Update: Manson released a new music video on Sept. 1st, which I attempted to watch but stopped caring about 4 minutes into it & found something else to do. I'd link you to it, but simply mentioning it is giving too much attention to it. So odds are the new album will be terrible like the last 2. Lame.
the giraffe's rating:
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Once anticipated, now heard

Average listal rating (390 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 0
Title: Hot Sauce Committee Pt. 2
Release date: TBA (Spring)

This album was supposed to be released last year but was sidelined when MCA was diagnosed with cancer. Now that he's recovered they're finally releasing it. I'm not so much excited about the album as I am the fact they'll tour behind it & I may FINALLY get to see them perform live. I've been trying to see them forever but something always prevents me from going, whether it's personal obligations or tour cancellations.

Now that I've heard it: Utter crap. The album can be divided into 2 categories: 1) annoying songs and 2) songs that sound like lesser versions of songs on better albums. Avoid avoid avoid.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (547 ratings) 7.1 IMDB Rating 0
Title: Collapse into Now
Release date: TBA (Spring)

2008's Accelerate was the first R.E.M. album I enjoyed every song on since 1996's New Adventures in Hi-Fi. Hopefully their new one will be as good.

Now that I've heard it: Well, it's an R.E.M. album, no doubt about that. None of it left any impression on me really, so I can't recommend it.
the giraffe's rating:
Average listal rating (22 ratings) 6.9 IMDB Rating 0
Title: Chuckles and Mr. Squeezy
Release date: May 3, 2011

According to a press release:
“The alternative rock band dredg from San Francisco can note a constantly growing number of followers and lovers since they decided to play music together more than 15 years ago, in 1995.

As there have been several rumors on the Internet recently about the successor of THE PARIAH, THE PARROT, THE DELUSION we are now happy to announce that dredg are finally going to release their fifth studio album CHUCKLES AND MR. SQUEEZY in late April/early May in Europe (outside of G/S/A) and on May 3, 2011 the U.S. Those who are expecting the record to be a consistent continuance of THE PARIAH, THE PARROT, THE DELUSION will no doubt be surprised: this album is completely different from everything dredg have ever done before.

It took the band members almost eight months of exchanging song-material via e-mail to finish the album–a process producer Dan The Automator (Gorillaz, Kasabian, etc.) was also involved in right from the early beginnings. His influence becomes most apparent in the songs “The Tent,” “Sun Goes Down” and “Before it Began” where he also took an active part in the songwriting.

Even though there is a lot of variation in tones and tempo, singer Gavin sums up the general sound of CHUCKLES AND MR. SQUEEZY as “Dark Pop”: a dark undertone is giving the songs some kind of a contemplative self-analysis – but in the end the album is still characterized by its optimism. “There is a certain darkness to it,” Gavin agrees. “A lot of our music is ultimately positive but can be conceived as sad as well. It has these two sides that oppose each other, but manage to reconcile in the music.”

With CHUCKLES AND MR. SQUEEZY dredg is breaking new grounds in their career – in a new, yet unexplored direction. The influence Dan The Automator had on this record is obvious. His status as a producer and co-worker lead him to an additional role as a guide, giving the band the impulse to work harder, to take a closer look at themselves and finally take this as an inspiration for creating their music and lyrics.

The last 15 years of development brought dredg to an unexpected, yet welcomed point in their career. “For me this is a renewal kind of record,” Gavin says. “It feels different and in some ways it feels like a new band. That was my goal when working with the band and with Dan–to make something we’d never done. Hopefully people can see the band in a new light. We can mold to different things and there is a future for the band when it comes to creating.”

Dan the Automator's involvement has me really interested in this one in addition to my enjoyment of dredg's music. And check out the cover art...

Now that I've heard it: Best used as background music while you're doing something else, as you're not likely to notice it's even playing.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: We Are the Champions
Release date: TBA (Early 2011)

I got into these guys early last year when I saw them open for Screaming Females. Very minimalist grunge/punk/rock sound created by 2 brothers formerly in the band Be Your Own Pet. I'm sure the new album will be more of the same, which is fine by me since I like the noise they make.

Now that I've heard it: It's everything a sophomore album should be. JTB build off the foundation laid down on their debut, showing progression and improved songwriting skills. Even better, this time around the songs are more easily distinguished from one another. Good stuff.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: Tao Of The Dead
Release date: Feb. 8

Trail of Dead has been one of my favorite bands since I first saw them perform live back in early '99, holding their spot with excellent albums worth revisiting on a regular basis. I've only heard one song so far from their forthcoming album which sounded better than anything on their previous release. Hopefully the rest of the album will follow suit.

Check out the cover artwork.

Now that I've heard it: Tao of the Dead is much better than their previous release Century of Self, and as a whole it's better than the album before that So Divided. I hear traces of their earliest works in places, and the album shows more focus than the last two efforts. The 16-minute-plus finale is especially noteworthy, and not just because it's their longest song they've written so far.
the giraffe's rating:
Title: Mine Is Yours
Release date: Jan. 25

Their previous 2 albums (Robbers & Cowards and Loyalty to Loyalty) earned places among my top albums for the years they were released & I'm still listening to them on a regular basis. Add to that their amazing live shows & you'll understand why I'd be excited by any new music from them.

You can hear THE ENTIRE ALBUM on their MySpace page.

Now that I've heard it: It's not as immediately impressive as their previous releases, but the lyrics seem as good as ever. Sounds like they're going for a more mature sound overall, which is ok but I'm not in love with it yet. Hoping it'll grow on me.
Current rating: 7.5/10
the giraffe's rating:

Listed by artist and arranged in the order I'm most excited about. This list will be updated as more information on these and other album releases becomes available.

If you enjoyed this list, please check out my other music lists

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the giraffe's music lists guide (37 lists)
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