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Hits on the horizon: Most anticipated albums of early 2021
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Hits on the horizon: Most anticipated albums of early 2021

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Among the highlights of 2020 were surprise album releases from Taylor Swift, Eminem and Childish Gambino.

We can’t predict those, but we can say what’s scheduled for the first quarter of 2021, and that slate includes new material from major stars like Foo Fighters, Florida Georgia Line and Sia, as well as such indie faves as Cloud Nothings, The Hold Steady and Julien Baker.

Last year, release dates were bumped all over the place as artists tried to navigate the pandemic. This year should be a little less volatile.

Here’s the first look. Keep an eye out for releases from Adele, Cardi B, Frank Ocean, Kendrick Lamar, J. Cole, Lorde, Rihanna, St. Vincent, Travis Scott and more.


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The Hold Steady, “Open Door Policy”: The Brooklyn indie-rock band’s eighth album was “was written and almost entirely recorded before the pandemic started,” according to frontman Craig Finn, “but the songs and stories explore power, wealth, mental health, technology, capitalism, consumerism, and survival — issues which have compounded in 2020.”Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, “Hunter and the Dog Star”: Brickell referred to the band’s fifth album and follow-up to 2018’s “Rocket” as “a collection of songs reflecting the mystery of self-expression, loyalty, companionship and love in the darkest sky just before dawn.”Mogwai, “As The Love Continues”: The Scottish post-rock band worked remotely with producer Dave Fridmann on this 10th album, which features contributions from Nine Inch Nails’ Atticus Ross and saxophonist Colin Stetson.Julia Stone, “Sixty Summers”: On her first album since 2012, the Australian folk singer-songwriter takes a turn toward cosmopolitan pop, working with Thomas Bartlett, aka Doveman, and Annie Clark, aka St. Vincent.Grandaddy, “The Sophtware Slump ..... on a wooden piano”: A stripped-down take on the indie-rock band’s classic 2000 album.

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Steve Hackett, “Under A Mediterranean Sky”: The new acoustic album from the former Genesis guitarist was inspired by his recent travels in the Mediterranean.Bill Champlin, “Livin’ for Love”: A new album from the former Chicago singer-guitarist-keyboardist who sang lead on the hit “Hard Habit to Break.”TRZTN, “Royal Dagger Ballet”: The latest from the Paris-based musician, composer and producer features collaborations with Interpol’s Paul Banks and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Karen O.

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