Music in 2009
Quite a few of my favourite bands are releasing albums this year, which inspired me to share what I know is coming and ask for what you are all looking forward to.
I can't start this post with anything other than the fantastic Pure Reason Revolution, a progressive rock/new prog band from right here in England. In fact, two of the members originate from Reading! I have tickets to see them at the beginning of March, a few days before the release of their second album: "Amor Vincit Omnia". However, the album was leaked a little while ago and I just couldn't resist downloading it to check it out, though it should be noted that I have already pre-ordered a physical CD copy.
The album is brilliant. PRR have gone for more synth sounds than their previous, but equally amazing, "The Dark Third", but it is a welcome change. It just suits them! I am completely addicted to "Victorious Cupid", "Deus Ex Machina" and "Les Malheurs", but still love every song. I cannot wait to hear them play this live. Fun fact: "Victorious Cupid" times perfectly with my walk from the bus stop to the studio in the mornings, so it has become a habit to listen to it each time.
Next up is the highly-anticipated 4th dredg album. I only started listening to dredg last year, after meaning to do so for so long, and they quickly rose to become a definite favourite of mine. They are a progressive/alternative rock band from California, with some very impressive work to their name. "El Cielo" is a masterpiece and "Catch Without Arms" is excellent, so I have very high hopes for what comes next. The way they experiment with sound and not have it sound awful is very promising and inspiring. However, the album has been delayed from the 24th of March to April.
Porcupine Tree have also announced that they are recording their next album, to be released by September for another tour. PT is another progressive rock band, from England, with very experimental sounds that often cross multiple genres within one song. While it took a while for their last album, "Fear of a Blank Planet", to sink in I still love it. "In Absentia", "Deadwing" and "Stupid Dream" are also amazing albums, containing many of my favourite songs. At the time of writing this, their official site seems to be failing to load so I can't gather much more about the new album, but I am sure it won't disappoint!
What is most likely my number one band have also announced a new album will be appearing sometime in the near future. I am talking about the incredible Oceansize. Their 2007 release, "Frames", is brilliant, with fantastic songs like "Savant" and "The Frame". Ever since first listening to Oceansize, however long ago that was, their music has had a hold on me like no other band. Days of listening to "Effloresce" and "Everyone into Position" were certainly not wasted, "Frames" only adding to that audio bliss. I really cannot wait to hear this new album, and I really hope that it will be released this year.
And it doesn't end there! Oceansize's "brothers-in-amp", Amplifier, have announced that their double album, "The Octopus", is coming this year! For a while now they have quietly been working on both their 3rd and 4th albums, which seem to have been merged into this one release. "Insider" and their self-titled album were awesome, and I expect they will have many excellent songs in this behemoth, as the band is defining it.
This is shaping up to be an amazing year for music, and I'm sure there is more to look forward to. Are there any upcoming releases that I have missed that you think I should keep an eye out for? Spread the word in the comments!
EDIT: I can't believe I forgot this, but Elliot Jay Stocks is also working on a musical release. He has posted a preview medley which sounds pretty damn good, and it seems to be nearing completion! He has also been blogging his progress, so be sure to check out his site for a behind-the-scenes log and some interesting ideas that have formed during recording.
Another one I missed: Isis have their next album, "Wavering Radiant", scheduled for release on the 5th of May (with a limited Vinyl release on 21st April). I own both "Panopticon" and "In the Absence of Truth", which I really should listen to more but still have enough confidence in them and their next album.