Beck 2014

We’re almost (almost!) done reflecting on the year that was, so it’s time to start taking a closer look at the year that will be. For the past several years, we’ve ranked our most anticipated albums. Today the feature returns, bigger than ever, with a whopping 100 records we’re looking forward to hearing, enjoying, debating, dissecting, and canonizing these next 12 months.

We limited the list to albums we feel confident will come out in 2014, whether because we’ve heard confirmation (or close to it) from labels, managers, or the artists themselves, or because the timing seems extremely likely. For the educated guesses, we needed something resembling evidence to go on, which is why we didn’t include perennial wish list material like the Avalanches (who have been the subject of fruitless rumors for more than a decade) but did include Joanna Newsom (who has been debuting new material for well over a year) and Taylor Swift (who, like clockwork, has released a new LP every other autumn since 2006 and is “ahead of schedule” for LP5; speaking of which, how cool would it be if she made an album that resembled …Like Clockwork?).

Of course, there are some question marks here — if you concentrate hard enough you can actually hear the Wrens painstakingly deliberating some extraneous overdub right this second — but last year we basically forced My Bloody Valentine to finally get on with it and release MBV, so do not bet against us.

Once we had raked in a heaping pile of information, we set about sequencing it according to our highly arbitrary yet stunningly accurate sense of expectancy. We listened to as many of them as we could get our hands on, and those spins frequently affirmed our suspicions that something splendid was afoot; in those cases, since we’ve already heard the records, our anticipation is as much about looking forward to increased visibility for the artists and the discourse that will rage when you guys get to hear this stuff. Other factors that stoked our curiosity: Maybe we rhapsodized constantly about the artist’s last album, maybe it’s a “companion piece” to a modern classic, maybe it’s a beloved songwriter’s first album since coming out as transgender — anything that might jar somebody out of the daze that sometimes accompanies the ceaseless cycle of album promos and into genuine excitement about new music.

Here’s what we’ve been looking forward to. Click on an artist’s name for all our recent news and audio/video teasers of the album where available…

100 Bruce SpringsteenHigh Hopes (Columbia, 1/14)

99 The RentalsTBD (Polyvinyl)

98 Broken BellsAfter The Disco (Columbia, 1/14)

97 Empress OfTBD (Terrible/XL)

96 tUnE-yArDsTBD

95 Schoolboy QOxymoron (Interscope/TDE, 2/25)

94 Thee Oh SeesTBD

93 No Mythologies To Follow (Chess Club/RCA Victor, 2/24)

92 You Blew It!Keep Doing What You’re Doing (Topshelf, 1/14)

91 Bleeding RainbowInterrupt (Kanine, 2/25)

90 The New PornographersTBD (Matador, Late Spring)

89 SisyphusSisyphus (Asthmatic Kitty, 3/18)

88 Wu-Tang ClanTBD

87 Drive-By TruckersEnglish Oceans (ATO, 3/4)

86 MastodonTBD

85 PhantogramVoices (Republic, 2/18)

84 Wolves In The Throne RoomTBD (Southern Lord, Winter)

83 Meek MillTBD (MMG)

82 MogwaiRave Tapes (Sub Pop, 1/21)

81 Pusha TKing Push (Def Jam)

80 ActressGhettoville (Werkdiscs/Ninja Tune, 1/28)

79 Rick RossMastermind (MMG/Slip-N-Slide/Def Jam, Early 2014)

78 The HorrorsTBD

77 ceoWonderland (Modular, 2/4)

76 Johnny CashOut Among The Stars (Columbia/Legacy, 3/25)

75 Black LipsUnderneath The Rainbow (Vice, 3/18)

74 Da Mafia 6ixTBD

73 Best CoastTBD (Spring)

72 The MenTomorrow’s Hits (Sacred Bones, 3/4)

71 My Morning JacketTBD (ATO)

70 Belle And SebastianTBD (Matador, Late Spring)

69 Neneh CherryBlank Project (Smalltown Supersound, 2/25)

68 Freddie Gibbs & MadlibPiñata

67 The NotwistClose To The Glass (Sub Pop, 2/25)

66 FKA TwigsTBD (Young Turks)

65 G-SideGz To Godz

64 Perfume GeniusTBD (Matador, Fall)

63 Death Cab For CutieTBD


61 Lily AllenTBD (Warner Bros.)

60 LiarsTBD (Mute, March)

59 Parquet CourtsTBD

58 SamphaTBD (Young Turks)

57 GodfleshA World Lit Only By Fire (Early 2014)

56 PallbearerTBD (Profound Lore, August)

55 The Pains Of Being Pure At HeartTBD (April)

54 The Hold SteadyTBD (Vagrant, Winter)

53 Twin ShadowTBD

52 CaribouTBD

51 Wye OakTBD (Merge)

50 TombsSavage Gold (Relapse, Spring)

49 Dum Dum GirlsToo True (Sub Pop, 1/28)

48 Linda PerhacsThe Soul Of All Natural Things (Asthmatic Kitty, 3/4)

47 Flying LotusTBD

46 PharrellTBD (Columbia)

45 Amber CoffmanTBD

44 Lana Del ReyUltraviolence (Interscope)

43 Angel OlsenBurn Your Fire For No Witness (Jagjaguwar, 2/18)

42 The BugAngels And Devils (Ninja Tune)

41 WarpaintWarpaint (Rough Trade)

40 Stephen Malkmus & The JicksWig Out At Jagbags (Matador, 1/7)

39 Katy BLittle Red (Rinse/Columbia)

38 James Blake & Chance The RapperTBD

37 Damon AlbarnTBD (Warner Bros.)

36 U2TBD (April)

35 Hamilton LeithauserTBD

34 Real EstateTBD (Domino)

33 Julian CasablancasTBD

32 AlcestShelter (Prophecy, 1/21)

31 MigosY.R.N. 2 (January)

30 White LungTBD

29 EMAThe Future’s Void (Matador/City Slang, Spring)

28 Sam SmithIn The Lonely Hour (Columbia, 5/26)

27 Bat For LashesTBD (Warner Bros.)

26 Jessica PrattTBD

25 The War On DrugsLost In The Dream (Secretly Canadian, 3/18)

24 Modest MouseTBD

23 WilcoTBD (dBpm)

22 FutureHonest (Epic)

21 Sun Kil MoonBenji (Caldo Verde, 2/4)

20 St. VincentSt. Vincent (Republic, 2/25)

19 Charli XCXSuperLove (Atlantic, Spring)

18 Titus AndronicusTBD (XL)

17 GrimesTBD

16 SwansTBD (Young God)

15 TV On The RadioTBD

14 Run The JewelsRun The Jewels 2 (Fool’s Gold)

13 Fleet FoxesTBD

12 Fucked UpTBD (Matador, Spring)

11 RobynTBD

10 SpoonTBD

9 Against Me!Transgender Dysphoria Blues (Total Treble, 1/21)

8 Taylor SwiftTBD

7 AgallochTBD (Profound Lore, April)

6 The WrensTBD

5 Joanna NewsomTBD

4 Cloud NothingsTBD

3 Frank OceanTBD

2 BeckMorning Phase (Capitol, 2/14)

1 Kanye WestTBD (Summer)

So which albums are you anxiously awaiting? Are we mad to exclude Blur, or just realistic? Scrutinize the rankings and share your own picks in the comments. As usual, let’s all just assume Detox isn’t happening.


Comments (204)
  1. Agalloch, Alcest, and Wolves in the Throne Room? I must be dreaming.

  2. Joanna Newsom is first for me (with EMA and Saint Vincent close second).

    And Kanye number one again in 2014 would be a little depressing.

    Anyway, it’s gonna be a great year.

  3. The Avalanches!!!!!

  4. I’m excited about Panda Bear and Avey Tare’s Slasher Flicks.

    • Anyone who has been listening to the Slasher Flicks boots knows that the group’s debut will take most listeners by surprise.

      It’ll be the album that Centipede Hz should have been.

  5. missed Rihanna and Metronomy.

  6. I didn’t see CEREMONY on here?

    Others I’d throw in: Cold Cave, Big Ups, Mr. Dream, Perfect Pussy, Self Defense Family (which I’ve already heard and praise,) Marissa Nadler, Blessed State

    Already disappointments: Xiu Xiu, the Notwist, Dum Dum Girls

    I’d not hold out for a Wrens album, seeing my diehard Wrens fan friend has been disappointing himself since 2008.

  7. Ooh, Fleet Foxes. Excited for that one. Helplessness Blues was my album of 2011.

    • not sure if two years is enough to get robin pecknold out of his quarter life crisis but we can hope… it’ll be really interesting to see where they go regardless; if/when it comes out I think i’ll descend into hysterics for a few days

      also hyped about the new father john misty album that’s supposedly coming out next year as well, though if he goes back to the style of his previous albums where it was just him and a guitar it’ll be as awful as those one note pieces of crap were though, aside from Hollywood Forever the best tracks on fear fun are the more upbeat ones where he’s talking about having sex and going on freaky drug trips

  8. The Hold Steady and Fucked up would be my #1 and #2 for sure.

  9. No Tycho? Fail.

  10. the cribs will have two wil be POP a second will be NOISY.not double album -two separate albums in same time.

  11. Afghan Whigs. They’ve been recording all the back half of this year – I refuse to believe that there’s not an album coming, announcement or not.

  12. So no Foo Fighters?

    • Honorable mentions!…

      Peter Bjorn & John, Damien Jurado, Twilight, Big Ups, Ceremony, Doe Paoro, Elbow, Saintseneca, Metronomy, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Temples, Audion, Tinariwen, Chromeo, Pontiak, Eternal Summers, Tomas Barfod, Tori Amos, Cymbals Eat Guitars, Nicki Minaj, Suzanne Vega, Pattern Is Movement, La Sera, Tokyo Police Club, together PANGEA, Cities Aviv, Trust, Highasakite, Perfect Pussy, Mark Kozelek, Gem Club, Star Slinger, Metz, Interpol, Mac DeMarco, Marissa Nadler, Thee Silver Mt Zion Memorial Orchestra, Lydia Loveless, Bill Callahan, Dean Wareham,Total Slacker, The History Of Apple Pie, Shit Robot, Riff Raff, clipping., Mew, Nicole Atkins, Deradoorian, Planningtorock, Cold Cave, SBTRKT, HEALTH, Swervedriver, Yellow Ostrich, Mr. Dream, Mark McGuire, Eagulls, Field Report, Gardens & Villa, Julio Bashmore, Woods Of Desolation, Wild Beasts, The Go Find, Vertical Scratchers, Hospitality, CYMBALS, Triptykon, Foo Fighters, PUP, Jeremih, Christopher Owens…

  13. Still haven’t discovered Utah’s next big export, Desert Noises, yet, eh?

  14. Real Estate, Damon Albarn, Warpaint, Spoon, and Beck. I’m really looking forward to the new Real Estate, I’ve worn out Days by this point.

  15. I like the guy…but is Kanye West not going to top any list this year?

  16. I think Future Islands will have a new album. Fingers are crossed.

    In that case, you need to add Future Islands.

  17. The new Love of Diagrams album will be out early in the year. If it’s anywhere near as good as Nowhere Forever, it will blow this other stuff out of the water. Since the new Wye Oak album will have no guitars (other than bass), it is not a Wye Oak album and will suck.

  18. Trust should definitely be on this list.

  19. BLOODY HELL! Where is Metronomy’s album Love Letters?! (It’s due for a March 14 release) Come on you gummies get wit it.

  20. T.S. at #8? Are there that many people on this site actually excited about her release? Why does this SG continue to push Taylor Swift as anything beyond a mildly talented pop star? I don’t get it.

  21. Aren’t Thee Oh Sees on a hiatus?

  22. CARIBOU!

    And JJ? And SZA?

    But yeah Beck, Fleet Foxes, Grimes, The War on Drugs, Real Estate, Amber Coffman, FKA Twigs, ceo, Empress Of and tuneyards are all ones I’ll at least Soulseek.

  23. D ‘ A N G E L O

  24. Well, hopefully this isn’t a ranked list because you certainly have some BULLSHIT in front of some serious heavy hitters.
    Lotsa great new songs to sing next year, tho. That’s a fact.

  25. Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

  26. Viet Cong (Ex-Women project)

  27. Where is Temples??

  28. Cloud Nothings at 4? I mean, I liked that last album too, but why so anticipated?

  29. And then they realized Thee Oh Sees are on hiatus, crushing all dreams.

  30. Surprised to not see “Whatever Ty Segall Decides to Release” on there. Can’t wait for that new War on Drugs album.

  31. I guess Damien Rice’s 3rd album is not for 2014 then… I’ll wait with Joanna Newsom, and maybe Fleet Foxes and Mac DeMarco.

  32. Angel Olsen, Beck, St Vincent, & Hospitality (surprised they weren’t included) are at the top of my anticipation list currently.

    I maintain a watch list of my own:
    It has a lot of the same crap as this one, but it also has some other, different crap.

  33. i’m starting to get why so many people make kanye west jokes on this website.

  34. Glass Candy, Todd Edwards, and Panda Bear

  35. A brand new Brand New album?

  36. I don’t know about anyone else, but I can’t say I’m exactly eagerly awaiting a new Death Cab… Codes and Keys was just such awful dreck, it basically sealed the time capsule they were already finding themselves in.

    Fortunately for my high school self though, Mogwai, Modest Mouse, and the New Pornographers have yet to make an album that wasn’t at least pretty damn satisfying.

    PS: Godspeed You! has been playing new stuff live, but who knows when that’ll get recorded…

  37. #15 TV on the Radio
    #8 Taylor Swift


  38. Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

    • You weren’t paying any attention if you think 2013 was a bad year for music. I think in this day and age with access to so many different artists so easily it’s really hard to not enjoy at least a dozen releases.

      • I don’t know, I’m probably just getting old, but it’s been a long time since I’ve been excited about more than a few new releases each year; almost all of them coming from established acts. The bulk of my music buying dollar is spent with the archive labels digging up crazy music that was overlooked decades ago. The new stuff sounds super compressed, lacking in overall creativity, and doesn’t really have any punch. Again, maybe I’m getting old, but even a decade ago it seemed like there was a thick wave of new stuff each year (Four Tet, Spoon, Interpol, etc.)

        • You’re right. You are just old.

          • Ha. I hope you’re young. And I hope you pay attention to the old people that are into the stuff you’re into, and how dumb they look.

            One day, when you get older, you can either get grumpy on the new stuff like me, or end up one of those old people trying to stay with it.

  39. I’m interested to hear people’s opinions on the three (in)famous female rappers that are supposedly dropping their albums come 2014 – Iggy Azalea, Angel Haze and Azealia Banks.

    All three were hotly tipped to make a splash with their releases this year, but with both Iggy and Angel being held up over and over by their management when their fanbases are clutching at straws for highly anticipated new material (the latter trying to make sweet with her fans by defying her label and trying to push her album out for free), and with the pinnacle of over-hype that has been the career of Ms. Banks dwindling by the hour, what can any of them hope to achieve?

    These are three of the albums I’m most looking forward to next year, but I’m worried about whether they’ll surface at all? And I also wonder, does anybody else even care?

  40. beach house are due a new record as well, seeing as they’ve released something every 2 years. lykke li should come soon as well, she’s been showing new stuff live. also, fingers crossed for jai paul

  41. Sad not to see that Nicole Atkins next album “Slow Phaser” didn’t make the cut, nor did the debut from Lake Street Dive…

  42. Aren’t Neutral Milk Hotel supposed to release an album next year?

  43. Liars, Real Estate, St. Vincent, Caribou, Fleet Foxes, Frank Ocean, and to a lesser extent The War on Drugs, Grimes, Kanye, TVOTR, Parquet Courts, tune-yards, Newsom and Titus!

    The final in a trilogy of 12″ singles from Absolutely Free should prove to be as incredible as the last two.

    Still holding on to hope that Twin Shadow might make good on Forget after Confess

  44. ScHoolboy Q is a top 10 anticipated album for me.

    Official release date > TBD

  45. Kendrick Lamar is set to start recording his next album in January. Is that not convincing enough information to get him on the list? I can’t possibly believe his album wouldn’t crack the top 100 otherwise. I expect it to be in the top 10 of 2014 at worst.

  46. Assuming most artists release an album every other year or so…

    Ab-Soul, Cloud Nothings, Dinosaur Jr, Flying Lotus, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Japandroids, Kendrick Lamar, Metz, Royal Headache, Stars, Swans, The Antlers, The Decemberists, Radiohead, Trap Them, Robyn, Sufjan Stevens, Mastodon, The Avalanches, Beck, The War on Drugs, Robyn and Modest Mouse are all due for new albums

  47. I’m intrigued to hear the new Against Me! album. Also, new Jeff Lynne album is coming sometime in 2014.

  48. How about Batwings Catwings?! Their first full length in Spring!

  49. Whoa, Wild Beasts only in a ”honorable mentions”, next to Foo Fighters, you should be ashamed of yourself mister.

  50. Any list of this sort that does not include Wild Beasts is not really much of a list I have to say. so when the album comes out and is spectacular I trust Stereogum will not be paying much attention. What a joke.

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