There’s a few things that I have to look forward to in the new year. The very same could be said for some of our favorite artists, who pour their joys and melancholies into albums that make up the soundtrack to our daily lives. For some, this requires no hesitation, and for others it requires careful planning and balance with plenty of expectations. With great hope and anticipation, here are a few artists whose albums we hope drop in 2018.
After Nothing Was the Same in 2013, giving us a new Drake to appreciate, in 2015 it seemed like he returned to ‘everywhere’ status with mixtape If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late with rapper Future, and his fourth album Views. Now it’s 2018 and aside from the standard “who is he with?” rumors, there’s also hope he may plan to return to music with his fifth album. Following the pattern, we’ve already gotten a mixtape, More Life in March 2017, and recently we’ve received Scary Hours, a two-song EP in early 2018. If we’re to guess, an album may very well be on the horizon later this year. Hopefully it provides a new look into the artist Drake is currently, but also shows where he sees himself with a progressive sound.
This dynamic & psychedelic group has had their share of back and forths on their music, their label, and sometimes themselves. For much of my younger years, this group was one of my ultimates for their prismatic sound, until it seemed like they lost interest. They brought back life with their release of Congratulations in 2010 and a few questions with their self-titled in 2013. In October 2017, MGMT released “Little Dark Age” among various concerts along the way, and confirmed that they’ll be releasing their fourth album. Upon this new release, hopefully they continue to show confidence and enjoyment in the sound they’ve crafted for themselves, and continue to explore its depth.
A chillwave project headed by musician Scott Hansen and a listen highly recommended if you enjoy synth, lo-fi and nostalgia. Tycho is solace for those seeking retrospect in their music experience with few words. Since 2004, 4 albums, 1 concept and notability for his musical direction, there is new excitement for this release. Hopefully it brings us to forward within ourselves as the listener, and forward into the strange time we’re in now.
Placed on my radar after delving into Charli XCX’s EP Vroom Vroom, with no regrets & high praises assisting with her new direction on Number 1 Angel (“Lipgloss” & “Roll With Me”), the electro-pop producer returned to the scene with comeback single “It’s Okay to Cry” in October 2017. The single was particular important because overall, there wasn’t much known about who Sophie is, other than their very creative and appealing take on modern pop music. The song itself, with breathy vocals & calm opening, it fades into a dramatic show of synth (getting borderline 80s retro near the end) as the lyrics speak of someone who appreciates a person for who they are and to show themselves. Its music video also reveals who Sophie is, with few distractions. Here’s hoping this year, Sophie’s promised new releases continue to let us in to the artist behind the mystery.
Enjoyable, relatable & never-ending. Tinashe made a splash with her most known release “2 On,” and since then, her first album Aquarius has left the majority of newer fans, craving for more. With the well-received mixtape Nightride to quell the wait for her second album, a release I personally enjoyed. Her music is relevant for any mood, situation or context. Tinashe has been outspoken with her frustrations regarding her experiences with her current label, and the direction of her awaited release. In January 2018, she released “No Drama” with rapper Offset of Migos, and has plans to release another single until the the release of her sophomore album, Joyride. Aside from actually seeing the full release, hopefully it provides the dual-side to Nightride, and shows the capability of Tinashe as the mainstream artist she hopes to be.
This artist is purely about the music, and takes the word ‘art’ with great care. Ocean had everyone raving much of 2010 into late 2013 with his debut mixtape Nostalgia, Ultra and his first album Channel Orange. His collaborations with artists such as Beyonce, Odd Future members, Brandy, Pharrell & Jay Z, marked him a mainstream artist with no breaks from his musicality. In 2016, Ocean released Blonde and everyone went mad; pure excitement to see his development, and satiated cravings for more music. “Pink + White” is the very best example to showcase it for its ethereal & addictive vibes. Now it’s 2018, and Ocean has grown into his own, musically & personally, and sometimes lets us know what he’s thinking. Hinting there’s enough material for another album (see his Tumblr post), there are some fans wondering if this means it’ll be released by the end of 2018. There does seem to be a pattern (about two to three years) but here’s hoping the next one pushes boundaries on R&B with few outcries & lasting impressions.
Minaj returned to her hip-hop roots with The Pink Print, previously released back in 2014. Since then, she’s had tours, makeup & clothing collaborations, but most especially feuds, family & features made much of 2016 & 2017 for Minaj. Aside from making it clear she’ll continue with acting (Her latest being Barbershop: The Next Cut alongside Ice Cube & Cedric The Entertainer), she made most with appearing on “Rake It Up” reuniting with Yo Gotti, & “Motorsport” with Migos & upcoming artist Cardi B. Both songs made their way into the Top 10 on Billboard, but for some this isn’t enough. With fans lying in wait for new music, and those waiting with bated breath for a lengthy response to Remy Ma’s “Shether,” 2018 seems to be a do or don’t regarding the next step in Minaj’s position in hip-hop music.
Photo Credit: Drake Facebook.