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2010 music preview
Out with the old tunes and in with the new. Hereís some of what the music industry has in store for the first few months of the year ó and whatís on the horizon after that.
Ringo Starr
Y Not
The worldís most overpaid drummer kicks off the year by welcoming a guest list that includes Joe Walsh, Joss Stone, Ben Harper, Richard Marx and some old guy named Paul.
Jan. 12
Vampire Weekend
Expect the hipster blogosphere to instantly anoint the acclaimed New York indie-rockersí sophomore CD as the best disc of 2010 ó or, more likely, condemn it as a massive failure. Jan. 12
Owen Pallett
Thanks to a copyright issue with a certain video game, the one-man orchestra formerly known as Final Fantasy will use his real name for the followup to his Polaris-winning He Poos Clouds. Jan. 12
Of the Blue Colour of the Sky
How will these Chicago power-popsters top that Grammy-winning synchronized-treadmill video from a few years back? My top 3 guesses: Escalators, Segways or Rascals. Jan. 12
Hawksley Workman
Eccentric singer-songwriter Workmanís latest is a typically eclectic offering that incorporates everything from electronica and hip-hop to Gregorian chants and metal. Go figure. Jan 19
End Times
This sequel to last summerís desire-themed Hombre Lobo is reportedly a concept album about divorce and aging. Whatís next? A box set about online dating? Jan. 19
The Magnetic Fields
Singer-songwriter Stephen Merritt and Co. offer up the unplugged folk-pop yin to 2008ís noise-rock outing Distortion ó and complete the synth-free trilogy that began with 2004ís i. Jan. 26
As 2007ís Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga proved, these Austin indie-popsters are superb songwriters. Too bad theyíre still one of the most boring live bands in existence.
Jan. 26
Corinne Bailey Rae
The Sea
British soul singer Raeís long-awaited sophomore album deals with her husband Jasonís fatal overdose in 2008. Get ready for the feel-bad album of the winter. Jan. 26
Nick Jonas & The Administration
Who I Am
The youngest of the pop-trio siblings claims he modelled his new side-project group after Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. Seriously, he said that. Feb. 2
Rob Zombie
Hellbilly Deluxe 2
Shock rocker-turned-horror director Zombie claims this sequel to his 1998 debut could be his last CD. Until he needs to sell his next one, that is. Feb. 2
Massive Attack
Seven years to the day after their last studio CD, the trip-hop duo finally return ó with the help of guest vocalists including Damon Albarn and Hope Sandoval. Feb. 9
Allison Moorer
The red-headed roots-rock singer-songwriter releases her eighth album. Donít be surprised if hubby Steve Earle makes a cameo. Feb. 9
Soldier of Love
This 10-song set is the British soul goddessí first studio album in 10 years. Way to hustle there, Sade. Feb. 9
Peter Gabriel
Scratch My Back
Sorry, fans: The former Genesis frontmanís first disc in seven years consists of orchestral covers of Radiohead, Arcade Fire, Talking Heads, Lou Reed, David Bowie, Neil Young and more. Feb. 16
Juliana Hatfield
Peace and Love
Near as I can tell, the underappreciated indie-rock singer-guitarist has about two fans left: Me and the guy who e-mails me every time she puts out a new CD. This oneís for you, dude. Feb. 16
David Byrne & Fatboy Slim
Here Lies Love
Well, this should be interesting: Itís a two-CD song cycle about Imelda Marcos, with cameos by Tori Amos, Cyndi Lauper, Sharon Jones, Steve Earle and others. Feb. 23
Erykah Badu
New Amerykah, Part II: Return of the Ankh
This sequel to the soul mamaís deservedly acclaimed 2008 release has already missed several release dates. Hereís hoping this one sticks. Feb. 23
No Guts, No Glory
These Aussies arenít the first band to cash in by ripping off AC/DC. With this second album, weíll find out if theyíve got any other tricks up their sleeve. Feb. 23
Ted Leo & The Pharmacists
The Brutalist Bricks
Despite being one of the finest songwriters of his generation, indie-rocker Leo also remains one of the most overlooked. Maybe this CD will change that. March 9
I have no idea what these experimental noise-rockers have in store on their fifth studio album. But I fully expect it to be nothing short of freaky. March 9
Broken Bells
This indie-rock duo consists of Shins singer-guitarist James Mercer and ubiquitous producer Danger Mouse. And they have a song called Your Head is on Fire. OK, then. March 9
Drive-By Truckers
The Big To-Do
Singer-guitarist Patterson Hood says the Athens roots-rockersí eighth album is ìmore rocking than anything since Disc 2 of Southern Rock Opera.î Count me in. March 16
Peter Wolf
Midnight Souvenirs
If you remember The J. Geils Band, you might be interested in their singerís first solo album in eight years ó featuring cameos by Merle Haggard, Shelby Lynne and Neko Case. March 16
Dillinger Escape Plan
Option Paralysis
Three years after their last album, Ire Works, the New Jersey metalcore maniacs unleash some fresh hell. March 23
Head First
The British electro-pop duoís fifth album shares its title with an old Babys disc. Presumably, thatís all they share. March 23
Scissor Sisters
The glammy dance-rockers teamed with British producer and remixer Stuart Price, who has twiddled knobs for everyone from Madonna to Gaga. Sounds like a good match. March
She & Him
Volume Two
M Ward and Zooey Deschanel return with another disc of indie-pop duets. April 6
This will be the experimental metal bandís first album without bassist Chi Cheng, who has not recovered from severe head injuries he suffered in a 2008 car crash. April 27
Melissa Auf def Maur
Out of Our Minds
The former Hole bassist has been working on her latest album for years ó and after hearing some of it played live, let me tell you: It still needs work. Spring
Bachman Turner
Rock íní Roll is the Only Way Out
The Canadian rockers get back in business together for the first time in 20 years. Spring
Goo Goo Dolls
Something for the Rest of Us
Johnny Rzeznik and Co. deliver something for those who consider Bon Jovi too edgy and interesting. Spring
Congrats are indeed in order for the Grammy-nominated dance-rockers, who are striking while the iron is hot with this followup to last yearís Oracular Spectacular. Spring
The New York post-punksí fourth CD is either a forward-leaning orchestral album, or a return to their old sound, depending on whose interview you read. Spring
The Walkmen
The New York indie-rockers put out albums in every even-numbered year since 2002, so thereís no reason for them to stop now. Spring
Plastic Beach
Damon Albarn says this is the poppiest record heís ever made ó and it includes cameos by Lou Reed, Mos Def, Barry Gibb, and Bobby Womack. Spring
Beastie Boys
Hot Sauce Committee Pt. 1
Now that Adam Yauch has reportedly recovered from cancer, the rap trio can finally dish up this long-overdue disc. Spring
John Mellencamp
No Better Than This
Mellencamp and producer
T Bone Burnett cut this disc in mono at historic locations like Sun Studio and a hotel where Robert Johnson recorded. Works for me. Spring
Dig out your flowerpot hats: The Spudboys are putting the finishing touches on their first new CD in a couple of decades. Spring
Guitarist Ed OíBrien recently said the band would be recording in winter and releasing the followup to In Rainbows this year. Well, that should take care of 2010ís album-of-the-year spot. TBA
The Hold Steady
Craig Finn and his hardworking Brooklyn bar band have been playing new songs on the road lately, so a new album canít be far behind. TBA
The Arcade Fire
The bad news? The Montreal indie-rockers recently shot down rumours of a May release. The good news? They claimed a new CD will surface in the latter half of the year. TBA
Cat Power
Word is that the singer-songwriter will ditch her Memphis Rhythm Band and return to the solo guitar-and-piano sound of old for this disc. TBA
Fleet Foxes
Singer-guitarist Robin Pecknold recently said there will ìdefinitelyî be an album in 2010. Thatís good enough for me. TBA
The New Pornographers
Itís been a year since A.C. Newmanís Get Guilty and three years since Challengers, so it would seem to be about time for these indie-popsters to rise again. TBA
The Georgia rockers are in the studio with producer Jacknife Lee making album 15 as we speak. TBA
Christina Aguilera
Light & Darkness
Becoming a mother has turned bigger singers than Aguilera into sappy crooners. Then again, sheís also filming the movie Burlesque, so who knows. TBA
Stone Temple Pilots
Supposedly, the reformed Weiland and Co. have almost wrapped up this disc with producer Don Was. Trouble is, their old label doesnít want to let them out of their contract. TBA
Linkin Park
The California rockers claim their fourth album will be more cutting-edge than 2007ís Minutes to Midnight. That shouldnít be hard. TBA
Dexter Holland and his veteran pop-punk outfit are reportedly due back in the studio with producer Bob Rock this month. TBA
Andre 3000 and Big Boi each plan solo albums in 2010 ó and might team up again. Iíve heard that before. TBA
ZZ Top
In the six years since their last album, I could have grown a beard longer than Billy Gibbonsí. TBA