Music festival lineups are generally excellent indicators of which artists will be releasing new music that year. Coachella, one of the earliest (and arguably most important) annual events, recently released their talent roster for 2019 and it’s stacked with acts that will get any type of fan excited. Childish Gambino, Tame Impala and Ariana Grande own the headlining spots, while 1975, Solange, Weezer, SZA, and Billie Eilish are also mentioned high up on the list. The best part? All of the aforementioned names are set to release albums in 2019, and they form only the tip of the iceberg in terms of artists dropping new projects. When it comes to new sounds, this year’s going to be one for the books.
While it’s impossible to just choose 10 upcoming albums to delve into, we did our best to select the ones that will define the upcoming year. From hip-hop to rock to synth-pop, there’s a little something for everyone. Check out our take on the most anticipated albums of 2019 below, along with a list of other artists releasing projects that you definitely shouldn’t miss.
Childish Gambino, Title TBA, Date TBA
Seeing as Donald Glover has announced that his upcoming album will be his last (at least under the moniker Childish Gambino), there’s no question it’s going to be one of the buzziest releases of the year. In 2018 the artist dropped “This Is America,” which turned out to be one of the most important tracks of the year, followed by “Feels Like Summer” and “Summertime Magic,” which are both singles from the upcoming album. Anything Glover touches is gold—this album will be no different.
The 1975, Notes on a Conditional Form, May
In November, The 1975 released their third studio album, A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships, which was met with rave reviews across the board. While they were planning on releasing a second album in 2018, it was ultimately pushed to 2019—Notes on a Conditional Form will therefore be dropping this year, although no official date has been announced. (The band’s manager told one fan on Twitter they were aiming for June.) It’s been described as a “nighttime record,” whatever that means.
Chance the Rapper, Title TBA, Date TBA
While exactly what to expect from Chance in 2019 is unclear, there’s no question that he’ll be releasing some type of comprehensive project. In 2018, he dropped a handful of singles and also confirmed a collaborative project with Childish Gambino. “We’ve got six songs that are all fire, but I think the album is going to be more than 14 songs,”he told Complex.
Solange, Title TBA, Date TBA
Solange’s 2016 release, A Seat at the Table, was a work of monstrously influential proportions and fans have been eagerly waiting for a follow-up ever since. In 2019, they’re set to get it. “There is a lot of jazz at the core,” Solange revealed to TheNew York Times Magazine of her upcoming album, which still doesn’t have a release date. “But with electronic and hip-hop drum and bass because I want it to bang and make your trunk rattle.”
Vampire Weekend, Mitsubishi Macchiato, Date TBA
It’s been six year since Vampire Weekend released Modern Vampires of the City, which means their upcoming release is long overdue. Called Mitsubishi Macchiato, it’s the first album the band will release without founding member Rostam Batmanglij, although Paste Magazine reports he might make an appearance on it.
Cardi B, Title TBA, April
On New Year’s Day, Cardi B revealed on Instagram live that she’d be dropping another album in 2019. "Of course, it's going to be an album in 2019. Hopefully, I can get my album done around the same time that Invasion of Privacy came out," she told fans. Her first release dropped in April of this year, meaning she only has four months to put her sophomore album together. "I don't know how possible that's going to be because I feel like I'm going to be extremely, extremely busy,” she noted.
Grimes, Title TBA, Date TBA
2015’s Art Angels was Grimes’ last album, which makes her upcoming 2019 project that much more exciting. In 2018 she released a single, “We Appreciate Power,” which Esquire described as “a fascinating industrial anthem that promises more experimental art-pop from Grimes.” In other words, her album is total mystery—just like the artist herself.
Tame Impala, Title TBA, Date TBA
The masters of psych-rock are set to drop a new album this year, which will be their first since 2015’s Currents. Kevin Parker, Tame Impala’s frontman, has been busy producing for A$AP Rocky, SZA, Mark Ronson over the past few years. Needless to say, we’re excited for new sounds from his own band, which are supposedly dropping in the summer.
Rihanna, Title TBA, Date TBA
Seeing as she’s been helming her own beauty and lingerie brands over the past few years, it’s no surprise Rihanna hasn’t released an album since 2016’s ANTI. However, the artist confirmed that she will be releasing her ninth studio album this year which, as revealed in an interview with Vogue, will be heavily reggae influenced.
Lana Del Rey, Norman Fucking Rockwell, early 2019
Lana Del Rey will be releasing her sixth studio album this year, which the artist has confirmed is already completely finished. She will be releasing a new single from the project on January 9th and has also revealed she plans to publish a book of poetry in 2019 as well.
It’s also worth mentioning that in a now-deleted Instagram post by Polydor Records, an affiliate of Interscope Records, upcoming albums for a slew of artists including Kendrick Lamar and Lady Gaga were announced. While many artists on the list have officially confirmed upcoming drops (Black Eyed Peas, Billie Eilish, Madonna, Schoolboy Q), Gaga and Lamar have not. If they do, there’s no doubt their projects would top our list.
Other artists dropping albums this year include Ariana Grande, James Blake, Beirut, Weezer, Kanye West, Billie Eilish, SZA, Sharon Van Etten, The Weeknd, Selena Gomez, Black Eyed Peas.
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