While I was writing the post on Tanita Tikaram (A Long-lost Voice), I started thinking about musicians that had not been heard of for a while – many for the good of the world at large and some, like Ms. Tikaram, that I for one would love to hear more of. And in that respect, my cup of joy has been full to the brim these last few months. Tom Waits came out with new material after about 7 years on ‘Bad As Me’, the striking voice of Sinead O’Connor is heard again on ‘How About I Be Me (And You Be You)?’, The Cranberries re-united after nearly 11 years with ‘Roses’, a much re-formed The Shins (to me it seems that this band’s really only James Mercer with none of the other members from 5 years back on this new album) return after a 5-year break with ‘Port Of Morrow’.
But I drink deep (my friends will ‘Aye’ to that, loud and long) and I haven’t yet had my fill. I’d love to see the return of The Hold Steady whose last album ‘Heaven Is Whenever’ was, in my reckoning, one of the best releases of 2010. That might be only wishful thinking with Craig Finn going solo but I can still hope. The National have quietly evolved over five albums since their 2001 eponymous debut to their last, ‘High Violet’ of 2010. Matt Berninger’s baritone layered on top of the Devendorf and Dessner brothers’ pulsing instrumentation forms the sound of one of the most easily identifiable groups around. But the band that I’m probably looking forward the most to is Spoon who were last heard in 2010 on ‘Transference’. Spoon have been one of the most consistent producers of great music of the last about 15 years. So I was very excited with all the chatter online about a possible new album this year.
While new albums from these artistes dwell in the realm of conjecture and hope, what’s certain is that there are releases in the next couple of months from The Counting Crows after a gap of 4 years, the oh-so-cool Norah Jones, Joan Osborne with her reworking of some classic blues and R&B material, the tireless Bonnie Raitt, and the very special Mr. Jack White.
By the time this year ends, I sure will be stoned drunk from that cup of endless pour. Cheers 🙂
The embedded audio file samples from ‘The Sweet Part Of The City’ by The Hold Steady, ‘Bloodbuzz Ohio’ by The National and Spoon’s ‘Me And The Bean’.