There’s plenty of new talent out there to get excited about this year. The likes of Palma Violets, Haim, Tom Odell and Savages have already caused a gaggle of eager music publications to pin their colours firmly to the mast, and should at least spark the usual ‘Next Big Thing’/'Hyped Up Bollocks’ debate when they release new albums in 2013. Here, some of Live4ever’s writers reveal what they’re hoping for from some of the more established acts out there, including the latest project from Thom Yorke and the plans of a few Manchester legends.
Let us know what you’re hoping 2013 will bring by leaving a comment below.
Jamie Boyd: There is a fine line between reviving past glories for purely monetary value, and providing new generations of fans a unique opportunity to see their heroes perform for the first time, but a Smiths reunion in 2013 would certainly revive my enthusiasm for the recent wave of band reunions.
Morrissey et al have been quick to denounce ongoing rumour which has seen The Smiths touted for a Glastonbury headline role alongside a string of local Manchester homecoming dates.
As unlikely as it may appear at the moment, such an announcement would surely be worth a festival ticket price alone for hardened fans, while those worrying about tarnishing of a legacy need only revisit the band’s back catalogue to realise it would be a tough ask to spoil such weight of strong anthems.
Duncan McEwan: Close your eyes and just imagine for a minute what a ‘Perfect Music World’ in 2013 would sound like – new releases from Beck, Blur, Portishead, Queens of the Stone Age, The Black Keys…Now imagine an ‘Imperfect Music World’ – new albums by The Saturdays, Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson, Backstreet Boys and Justin Bieber. Guess which world we live in..?
Well fear not, for it’s both. Probably.
All the former artists have hinted at releasing new material this year and in fact the new Black Keys album is confirmed. Beck, meanwhile, is considering two album releases. Add to this recipe Johnny Marr’s long awaited solo album (‘The Messenger’), new albums from The Flaming Lips (‘The Terror’), Arcade Fire, Eels (‘Wonderful, Glorious’), Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds (‘Push the Sky Away’), Kurt Vile (‘Wakin on a Pretty Daze’), Mice Parade (‘Candela’) and stir thoroughly. There, harmony is restored.
But aside from established artists my top tip for 2013 is experimental-rock-electronica Atoms For Peace (a fusion of Thom Yorke, Nigel Godrich, Flea, Joey Waronker and Mauro Refosco). And if The Beatles finally agree to officially release the Let It Be film (and it’s rumoured they will) then I can probably hold out for that new Blur album until 2014 if I have to.
Craig Sergeant: So after making it through another spin around the sun in one piece, it’s good to look ahead to what is shaping up to be a year in music chockfull of returning elder statesmen and women.
There’s not long to wait for the first to land either as in January, Yo La Tengo are due to deliver their brand new cut ‘Fade’. The Hoboken trio can be expected to deliver their usual fare – which as long time fans will know, actually means delivering something pretty unusual. Whether it’s a psychedelic droning jam, the sweetest of glucose-injected orchestral pop or some straight ahead fuzzed-up indie rock, Kaplan and co will be flitting across the genres like ADHD patients low on meds. A good thing.
On the live circuit, Kevin Shields finally getting off his arse again and getting together to tour his new album with My Bloody Valentine is going to be something pretty special. Being far too young to experience the band first time around, it will certainly be something else to experience the tremendously violent sensorial assault at the end of the set, coined ‘The Holocaust’. Earplugs at the ready, folks.
The final act in this triumvirate of elders is none other than the affable and uber-cool Mancunian guitarslinger Johnny Marr. Already caressing the airwaves with six string finesse is the single ‘The Messenger’, which finds Marr with one foot in a puddle of post punk angular guitars and the other in a quicksand of shoegazing subtlety. Whilst Marr’s album raises this writer’s anticipation, so too does the prospect of witnessing the world’s best guitarist in person when he tours in March.
On a final note, it’s about time a new jangling, 12-string toting, four-part harmony band made some incredible music. That’s not based on anything in particular, just a personal wish. So if you’re reading, get to it.
Dave Smith: It’s not too long ago that the misinterpretations of an ancient civilization’s diary keeping correctly proving to herald the end of the world would have seemed a far more likely proposition for 2012 than The Stone Roses reforming.
But reform they bally well did, and are now the proud owners of a Guinness World Record no less. After the seas of a European comeback tour were safely navigated minus the inter-band drama which so often dogged their progress first time around, a new album is now widely expected to arrive this year.
For the best part of two decades their last studio effort, ‘Second Coming‘, has remained a polarising final chapter to an eventful story; for some, a messy, ill-guided plunge into sub-Led Zeppelin riffery and tired Acid House nods. For others, a much under-rated and under-valued exploration of John Squire’s substantial talents, weighed down and unfairly judged due to the over bearing expectation of its all-time classic predecessor.
So the expected arrival of a third record is hugely intriguing, especially as new material has already been described as ‘psychedelic pop’. Yummy. With Ian Brown and Squire apparently working as harmoniously together as they have done since the Eighties, and a rhythm section proving itself to still be the envy of the musical world, the group undoubtedly retain the tools to deliver one of this year’s essential releases.
More stoic logic would suggest they’ll never hit the heights of their genre-fusing heyday, that the success of a rapturously received reunion tour was nothing more than yet another soak in the pleasant warm waters of nostalgia. But The Stone Roses have never been a band to follow the rules, so why should they start now?