Last year I made a list of the 10 albums I was anticipating from 2013, but I just couldn’t narrow my list down to 10 this year. This year will be full of surprises as the music industry is already buzzing with rumors that many heavyweights could return this year with albums, although we’re still awaiting official confirmation from some.
Regardless, here are 15 albums to hope and pray for this year. Share your list with me below!
Adele – TBA
This may or may not happen, but the possibility is enough to get me excited. Adele spent most of 2013 hibernating with her family, but the singer will reportedly release the followup to 21 this year. We already know everything she releases comes out amazing, but I’m hoping she goes back to her roots and releases an album that is more stripped down and along the lines of her debut album 19. Either way, we’ve never received an album from the singer when her love life was going this well! She definitely has a lot of inspiration this time around!
Ed Sheeran – TBA
Grammy nominated singer/songwriter Ed Sheeran has been teasing a few special announcements for weeks and I’m assuming at least one of them will have something to do with the new album. After touring with Taylor Swift for most of 2013, the singer is gearing up to release his sophomore album, the followup to +. My hopes are high.
Kendrick Lamar – TBA
Kendrick Lamar had the entire rap game in a tizzy with one controversial verse last year so imagine how fans and critics are going to react when he drops the followup to good kid, m.A.A.d city. The rapper is supposed to release the album later this year and he’s already been working with Dr. Dre. Something tells me this project won’t disappoint.
Sam Smith – In The Lonely Hour
Sam Smith is definitely someone to watch this year. The British crooner revealed the album cover and tracklisting for his debut album The Lonely Hour over the weekend. The album will feature the previously released track “Lay Me Down,” along with lead single “Money on My Mind.” Smith’s 2013 EP Nirvana was one of my favorite extended plays from last year so I’m pretty excited to see the emo music The Lonely Hour features when it is released on May 26.
Lana Del Rey – Ultraviolence
Many people wrote Lana Del Rey’s Born To Die off, but it was probably one of my favorite albums of 2012. The singer has a thing for complicated loves, which sucks for her, but it gives us some of the most tragically beautiful music that has been released recently. It will be interesting to see if the singer is able to reinvent herself this time around without losing her core fanbase.
Kanye West – TBA
If you’re still trying to digest Yeezus, you may feel a bit overwhelmed knowing West is reportedly planning to release another rap album this year. That probably means more intricate productions, more critiques of classism and more vivid lyrics of West’s sex life are to come. Yeezus topped many of the End of the Year lists last year and if Adele stays inside with her family again this year, West may end up on top this year, too.
Solange Knowles – TBA
I was hoping Solange Knowles would team up with Dev Hynes for her third studio album, her first LP since 2008’s Sol Angle and the Hadley St. Dreams, but I don’t really think that’s going to happen due to their recent tiff. Still, Knowles released a dope compilation full of R&B newcomers last year and I’m hoping her forthcoming album is full of vivid imagery and soulful, experimental tracks, too!
Sevyn Streeter – TBA
Chris Brown’s artist Sevyn Streeter not only penned solid tracks like Ariana Grande’s “The Way” last year, but the singer released my favorite EP of the year. Call Me Crazy, But.. was so good because it showcased the multiple emotions that can come with relationships. The singer is planning to release her solo debut album this year and I’m hoping it is full of catchy melodies and 90s-reminiscent productions just like last year’s EP.
Mariah Carey – The Art of Letting Go
After a series of false starts, Mariah Carey is set to release The Art of Letting Go this year and she has teamed up with Jermaine Dupri again, so I’m expecting Emancipation of Mimi realness. Unfortunately, Carey’s treatment of the album’s lead single is less than promising.
Sia Furler – TBA
Last year Sia penned some pretty major singles for pop stars as well as releasing a few solid songs of her own (see: “Elastic Heart” and “Kill & Run“). The singer has been planning to release another solo album for a while now and 2014 is supposed to be the year that it officially happens. Most pop connoisseurs only know Furler for her songwriting skills, but the singer has a distinctive voice that is quite amazing. I am just hoping she is still able to maintain the eclectic feel of her previous albums now that she is “mainstream.”
Jhene Aiko – Souled Out
Jhene Aiko didn’t release her Def Jam debut album Souled Out like expected last year, instead pushing the album’s release back to 2014 and releasing Sail Out, an EP that featured solid collaborations with rappers Childish Gambino and Kendrick Lamar, amongst others. Aiko’s soft vocals paired with her blunt lyrics are always a beautiful thing, so I’m hoping Souled Out is full of songs like “Beautiful Ruin” and maybe another installment of “Comfort Inn Ending.”
Chris Brown – X
Chris Brown gets out of rehab soon and I’m hoping he stays out of trouble for good this time. He released some solid singles last year and X deserves to be promoted. I’m hoping in 2014 Brown can release a solid album and keep the focus off his private life.
Nicki Minaj – TBA
In 2013 we saw hints of Nicki Minaj going back to her rapping roots, so I am pretty excited to see how her third studio album comes out. 2012’s Pink Friday; Roman Reloaded wasn’t a bad album, it just lacked focus. Hopefully she can release an album that pleases her pop, theatrical and hip-hop sides without coming off as disjointed.
Kimbra – TBA
Kimbra is underrated. The female singer on Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used To Know” put out a solid debut album in 2012, but many people still don’t even know what she looks like. The soulful New Zealand singer has a knack for crafting vibrant songs that overflow with layers of vocals. I can’t wait to hear what she has up her sleeves this time.
Imogen Heap – Sparks
Not only is Imogen Heap releasing her first album since 2009 this year, she’s selling a $300 box set that includes a trip to her house and tickets to a sound check. The followup to Ellipse, Heap’s fourth studio effort will be released on March 3. I sure have missed her beautiful perspective.