2013 was the year of the reunion album from ones you though you would never see (Black Sabbath original line up, 35 years), bands you forgot about (Mazzy Star, 17 years), blink and you missed them reunions (The Postal Service, 10 years), reunions you did not think you wanted (Fall Out Boy, 5 years); Daft Punk even won Album of the Year after an eight year lay-off (if you do not count them scoring 2010’s Tron Soundtrack).
We are less than a week into the second month of 2014, but there have already been two high profile reunion announcements. OutKast, who have not put out an album together since 2006, will be basically headlining every festival this year. While Rumours-era Fleetwood Mac will be touring together for the first time since Christine McVie left the group in 1998. It is unclear if either will be releasing new music together this year (depending on if you believe Queen Latifah who says there is a new Outkast album coming; Fleetwood Mac just released a new EP last year) there are some long awaited albums from out in 2014. This does not even include rumoured comeback albums from of Jodeci (19 years), D12 (10 years), or if you are to be believed TMZ ambushed interviews, Gnarls Barkley (6 years).
Every once in a while I post something in my Don’t Call it a Comeback, where I highlight an artist I hope would come back into the public consciousness and here are three acts that have already announced that new music on the way.
The Afghan Whigs (16 years): The band got back together in 2011, but will not be releasing their first record since 1998 until April 15 with Do to the Beast. To be honest, I never got into the band back in the day and only have three of their songs in my library and they are all covers: Barry White’s Can’t Get Enough of Your Love, Babe for the criminally forgotten Beautiful Girls Soundtrack (I blame Michael Rappaport because everyone tries to scrub anything Rappaport from their brains; I fear for this season of Justified), TLC’s Creep, and most recently Frank Ocean’s Lovecrimes.
George Michael (10 years): It has been a decade since George Michael released an album an arguably almost two decades since he released any music anyone cared about. It probably does not help that whenever you bring up the singer, discussions of park bathrooms are sure to follow. That discussion probably will not change when Symphonica is released March 17, but I do like the first single Let Her Down Easy (a song written by another long forgotten artist Terrence Trent D'Arby though apparently he released a new album just last year now under the moniker Sananda Maitreya) which reminds me of a stripped down version of one of my favorite Michael’s song Mother’s Pride. But a warning before you click the play button below: it features a woman taking off her clothes. For a gay dude, George Michael sure likes to fill his music videos with hot naked chicks.
Nickel Creek (9 years): I got into Nickel Creek right around their third album. Of course they went on hiatus shortly after. But the individuals have been busy releasing sixteen albums between them in that time. The bluegrass trio got a big boost in the wake of O Brother, Where Art Thou? And this is the perfect time to come back as there is an even bigger folk boon going on today (who did not initially bring up Nickel Creek while trying to describe The Lumineers who kind of stole their career). There is no official street date for a new album or even name yet, but there is a new single Destination which stand up with their already stellar catalogue and will surely dominate public radio this year.
Lily Allen (5 years): Also no official album announcement yet, but over the past three months, Lily has released three new songs (a fourth on Girls Soundtrack Volume 2 coming next week), the latest is the super catchy Air Balloon which sounds like classic Lily. Hopefully a full length album release date will not be too far away.