Last week, notoriously reclusive British vocalist Adele released new music for the first time since 2012 and even though her new album won’t be released until later this month, her comeback is already sending shockwaves through the music industry. Her triumphant new single “Hello” has shattered several records and her forthcoming new album 25 is poised to do the same. The whole ordeal is a pleasant reminder of what a full scale worldwide comeback can look like.
I spent much of the past week with “Hello” on repeat and it got me thinking about other artists in need of a comeback. A few of these are likely to release a new album in the next year, while others have no plans to return but I wanted to include them anyway because it’s my wish list and I can put whoever I want on it.
Here are the rules:
- No full length albums in the past three years (live albums, solo material, and side projects don’t count)
- Must be alive
- Must be good
- End of list
Time Since Last LP: 1,722 days
Average Time Between Releases: 939 days
When the worlds greatest rock band releases a mediocre record, it’s still pretty solid and it’s called The King of Limbs. Radiohead’s last record falls near or at the bottom of their otherwise legendary discography and they are in desperate need of redemption. The band has been in the studio and may be nearing completion of their elusive LP9. Despite their recent confirmation of new recordings, there is still no solid news about when their next album will arrive. Maybe they are on the decline. Maybe they release the Greatest Rock Album of All Time (again). Who knows?!?! There is no limit to what Radiohead is capable of, it’s only a matter of what they have left in the tank. In any case, LP9 can’t get here soon enough.
Time Since Last LP: 1,479 days
Average Time Between Releases: 768 days
Anthony Gonzalez, the mastermind of M83, thinks that he can satisfy our desire for new material with catalogue reissues and remixes. He’s wrong. The people want new M83 tunes. It’s been over four years since the release of M83’s glorious double LP Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming and I’m having some serious withdrawals. I’ve got a fever and the only prescription is cosmically transcendent indie-electronic music. In a recent statement, Gonzalez confirmed that he is working on new music to be released sometime next year.
Time Since Last LP: 1,214 days
Average Time Between Releases: ????
In the summer of 2012, R&B upstart and fringe member of Odd Future, Frank Ocean released his debut album Channel Orange. The album would go on to become my favorite album of the year and an instant classic in the blossoming alt-R&B genre. In April of this year, Frank Ocean dropped some cryptic hints about new material. There were whispers of something called Boys Don’t Cry. He promised SOMETHING would happen in July. He was set to headline FYF in Los Angeles but dropped out last minute. It’s November and Frank Ocean still hasn’t given us a damn thing. Frank Ocean and I were both born on October 28, 1987 so we have a psychic-birthday-buddy link and every day I send him finish your album already vibes. Even Adele wants to know where the f**k his new album is.
Time Since Last LP: 1,493 days
Average Time Between Releases: 1,576 days
Justice needs a comeback just to remind everyone they still exist. Their 2007 debut album Cross was a world beater. Their sophomore release Audio, Video, Disco was not. They’ve released some EPs and a pair of live albums along the way but no significant new material has materialized since 2011. There have been recent reports that they are hard at work on their third LP so hopefully it’s not too long before we get some new Justice tunes. Remember how dope “Phantom” and “D.A.N.C.E.” and “Stress” and “DVNO” and DAMN IT JUSTICE PLEASE COME BACK TO US.
Time Since Last LP: 1,777 days
Average Time Between Releases: 1,225 days
Gorillaz only released two albums in their first ten years as a virtual band so it’s no surprise Damon Albarn’s animated crew of trip-hop virtuosos haven’t been seen in a while. A few years back, Albarn reunited with Blur and toured for a bit with those blokes so I can’t say I’m surprised at the lack of new Gorillaz music. Last fall Albarn stated that he was working on new material for Gorillaz and earlier this month he confirmed that he and band mate Jamie Hewlett are working on a new album that will hopefully be released sometime next year.
Time Since Last LP: 1,600 days
Average Time Between Releases: 1,218 days
Justin Vernon is a busy dude. It’s been nearly five years since he released his stellar self titled sophomore LP as Bon Iver but in the time since he’s worked closely with Kanye West, developed several side projects including The Shouting Matches and Volcano Choir and done other miscellaneous cool indie rock dude stuff. Despite the detours, Vernon’s strongest material has always come from Bon Iver. This summer we got mixed signals about the future of the band. In early July, he said he had no plans to make new music under the Bon Iver moniker. Several weeks later, Bon Iver debuted several new songs during a rare live set at the Eaux Claires Music Festival (which Vernon curated). Both Bon Iver LPs are absolutely wonderful and I hope someday soon we get a third.
My Chemical Romance
Time Since Last LP: 1,814 days
Average Time Between Releases: 994
This one may seem a little out of place on an otherwise indie rock heavy list but a My Chemical Romance reunion would make me so happy. I will always have a very special place in my heart for their 2006 album The Black Parade. The comically morbid pop punk pageantry of The Black Parade holds up surprisingly well and nearly a decade later the album is still in my regular rotation. It broke my heart when they disbanded in 2013 but at least lead singer/songwriter Gerard Way has remained active. His solo album Hesitant Alien was one of my favorite records of 2014 but it doesn’t fill the void left by MCR’s breakup (I’m okay, I promise).
Time Since Last LP: 2,000 days
Average Time Between Releases: 971 days
It’s been 2,000 days since LCD Soundsystem released their final album This Is Happening. You can fit the band’s entire release history inside that timeframe. A few weeks ago there were wildfire rumors of an LCD Soundsystem reunion but within hours the rumors had been debunked. I never got a chance to see the band perform live, though I vividly remember watching the live stream of their ‘final’ show at Madison Square Garden. Of all the possible comebacks on the list, this one seems the most distant but dreamers gonna dream. James Murphy, if you are by some miracle reading this, please know that we miss all of our friends and we need someone great to come back. I long to dance myself clean in the sound of your glorious return.