My 2019 Music Guide: Anticipated Releases & Wish List

Another year is here and I’m so excited to start it off with a bang! Below are a handful of album releases I’m excited to check out this year, along with my wish list of artists who I hope release music this year. Not many of them are complete shots in the dark, and if it’s doubtful, I’ve explained my reasoning as to why it IS possible for said artist to release something this year.

One more thing I noticed while writing this is how many of these artists have upcoming shows in Chicago, which is really great! Artists with an asterisk (*) next to their names have shows on the books in Chicago as of 1/9/2019.


In order of release date:


Maggie Rogers / Heard It In A Past Life

Genre: Pop
Release Date: January 18
Why You Should Get Excited: Maggie’s been releasing music slowly since 2016 – slow enough to absolutely drive me crazy. Although it’s definitely not her fault, this album release is long overdue and has been getting a lot of buzz since Maggie toured to promote it this past fall, had a debut performance on SNL and is now likely to be touring the festival circuit this summer. Although I am extremely excited for this release, there is little to be surprised about since she played every song on the album live when I saw her in October. Regardless, I’ve been following her career for almost three years at this point and am happy to finally get to hear her debut very soon.


Sharon Van Etten* / Remind Me Tomorrow

Genre: Indie Folk/Rock
Release Date:
January 18
Why You Should Get Excited: 
This is Sharon’s first release since 2014 (not counting the reissue she released in 2017) – and she’s returning from a break after attending grad school and having a child. She’s also explored an acting career since. It’s obvious that her perspective on life has been impacted since her last release, which will be exciting to hear and understand after hearing this album. This is Sharon’s first collaboration with producer John Congleton, who has worked with artists like St. Vincent and Angel Olsen. Oh, and one more thing to get excited about: Sharon Van Etten is about to embark on a North American tour with support from two other wonderful artists: Lucy Dacus and Nilüfer Yanya (I’ve featured both on this blog).


Broods* / Don’t Feed The Pop Monster

Genre: Pop
Release Date: February 1
Why You Should Get Excited: While Broods’ first EP came out way back in 2013 and have released two LPs since, it seems as though they’ve struggled building a larger fanbase in North America. I think this changed as the New Zealand duo (they’ve won numerous awards in their home country) seemed to undergo a transformation in the past year in terms of aesthetics and sound. Although I really did like a handful of their songs from their 2016 album Conscious, it feels as though their newer releases (“Eyes A Mess,” “Peach,” “Everything Goes (Wow)”) encapsulate the sound that can really push them forward. Not only did Broods open for Taylor Swift during the New Zealand leg of her reputation tour, but they’ve also announced a headlining North American tour for this spring. I’ll be curious to see how this album does.


Girlpool*What Chaos Is Imaginary

Genre: Indie Rock
Release Date: February 1
Why You Should Get Excited: Ever since I saw Girlpool live at Pitchfork in 2018, I’ve been immensely drawn to their sound. I knew a handful of their songs prior but seeing them live really made me a fan. Since their last extended release, half of the duo, Cleo Tucker has come out as transgender (identifying with them/they pronouns) and I would venture to assume this recent life change for them will definitely influence their sound, what they sing about, etc. Girlpool’s last album was released in 2017 and they’ve released  three songs in 2019 ahead of What Chaos Is Imaginary. This is probably the grittiest style of music I listen to and I’m curious to see if their is still one I can enjoy without it becoming a bit harder than what I tend to prefer. Girlpool will be touring with Hatchie later this year.


Lily & Madeleine* / Canterbury Girls

Genre: Indie Folk/Pop
Release Date: February 22
Why You Should Get Excited: Midwestern natives and sister pairing Lily & Madeleine Jurkiewicz have released three albums together since 2013 on New West Records – a label based in Nashville and home to indie rock, folk & country artists like Shovels & Ropes and Ben Folds. I have to admit I had never heard of the duo’s music until they appeared on a recent New Music Friday playlist on Spotify, but their sound is right up my alley. They have beautiful, soulful pop harmonies reminiscent of some of my favorites like First Ait Kit and Joseph – also sister groups who seem to effortlessly collaborate with their art. What could you not like?


The Japanese House / Good At Falling

Genre: Indie Pop
Release Date: March 1
Why You Should Get Excited: Amber Bain has been making music under this surname for YEARS and is finally ready to drop her debut album. I’ve covered her before, so I’ll spare you the repeat details for the most part. Since she’s worked closely with members of The 1975 in the studio – I’m surprised she’s not touring with The 1975 this spring since she’s been a tour mate in the past. Her music is definitely going to get a huge wave of new fans once this album is finally released thanks to Matty and the rest of the band who I’m sure will be hyping the album’s release. This debut is is overdue  – which is why you should be excited to hear a full length body of work from an artist who’s been constantly releasing EPs and touring.


Sigrid / Sucker Punch

Genre: Pop
Release Date: March 1
Why You Should Get Excited: It’s hard to believe that it’s 2019 and we’re still waiting for a debut album from Sigrid. Not only was this Norwegian singer named as the BBC Music Sound of 2018, but I’ve been writing about her success since 2017 and she’s been touring worldwide for awhile at this point. Only 18 or 19 right when she was getting started, Sigrid has been making waves with her infectious synth pop tunes with catchy lyrics and her ability to encapsulate what it’s like to be an adolescent in this day and age. She’s set to tour with Maroon 5 later this year (an interesting choice, to be honest). I’m surprised she hasn’t appeared on any summer festival lineups so far, but I have a feeling she could be at Lolla this year (I was shocked she wasn’t last year). 


Lana Del Rey / Norman Fucking Rockwell

Genre: Indie Pop
Release Date: March 29
Why You Should Get Excited: I’m the first one to admit that I’ve been disappointed with Lana’s music more than once – I was a big fan back when I was in high school and saw her at Lollapalooza in 2013. Her releases after Born To Die and Paradise weren’t really my cup of tea and I definitely stopped following her releases up until I heard she was working with Jack Antonoff on her new music (Jack does everything that I love in this world). So far, I’ve really liked the singles she’s released for the new album, though I think “Venice Bitch” didn’t need to be 9 minutes long. Regardless, I’m really curious to hear her sound after collaborating with Jack in the studio.

Other noteworthy releases:

Deerhunter* / Why Hasn’t Everything Already Disappeared?
Release Date: January 18

Toro y Moi / Outer Peace
Release Date: January 18

RY X / Unfurl
Genre: Indie
Release Date: February 15

Ten Fé* / Picture Perfect, Present Tense
Genre: Indie Pop
Release Date: March 1

My Wish List:

The 1975* (Semi confirmed for May 2019). This is supposedly the final project of the band’s multiple album cycle of releases dubbed “Music for Cars.” They’ve definitely shared numerous times that they planned on releasing another album soon after A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships, so we’ll see when they officially announce the release date.`

Bleachers (????) No idea if this is even in the realm of possibility in music this year, but I do know that Jack has been hinting at new music. I could see this being delayed til 2020 because he’s been working so much with other artists in the studio (and I’m assuming he did work with Taylor Swift for her new album) so I’m really not sure about this one. But we don’t call these wish lists for nothing!

Carly Rae Jepsen (TBD). Rumors all over the place are saying that Carly’s next album is set to release in 2019, just no dates have been shared. This will be a huge release following her sleeper hit album Emotion, released way back in 2015.

From Indian Lakes* (TBD). I have no idea if any of my readers listen to From Indian Lakes, but they are one of my favorite bands of all time and haven’t released anything new since 2016, which is why I haven’t written much about them. They are about to start touring with a band called Copeland later this year (bought my ticket already!) and I know that Joey (singer and songwriter of the group) has shared that he’s recorded new music.

The Head & The Heart (TBD). They’ve shared on social media that their fourth album is completed and they played a couple new songs when I saw them this past December. I can imagine that this should be early on in the year at least before the summer since they are playing shows in Denver and inevitably will announce more to promote the album.

Hozier (Early 2019?) This is more of an official wish since he’s shared countless times that his second album following the crazy critical success of his debut in 2014. He’s set to perform at a handful of festivals already this summer (fingers crossed for Lollapalooza also) and is about to start a tour with Jade Bird. UPDATED on 2/13 – Set to release on 3/1

Local Natives – Members of Local Natives have been teasing their album release for months now – and shared on social media that there will be some sort of new music released within the first 40 days of 2019. I’m hoping there is a single and album announcement ASAP. I’m surprised they haven’t been on any festival lineups so far, but nothing is really ruled out yet. UPDATED on 2/13 – the band has released spring tour dates and revealed the album it set to release in March 2019.

Marina & The Diamonds (TBD). Now going just as Marina, she’s been teasing new music on social media and I’m sure 2019 is the year for her to make a comeback. Her last release was in 2015 – a long time ago! It’ll be interesting to see if she changes her sound at all just because she seems to be rebranding in a sense, so we’ll see.

Miley Cyrus (Shot in the dark?) This one is surprising because I’ve never been too into Miley’s music – I really didn’t like her attempt at country music within the past couple years and I definitely didn’t like her crazy Bangerz phase. However, she definitely seems like she’s in a good place in her life right now and the more I listen to “Nothing Breaks Like A Heart” w/ Mark Ronson, the more I think she found her niche.

Sky Ferreira (TBD). It seems like EONS since Sky Ferreria released her debut studio album – and that’s because it was released way back in 2013 – I wasn’t even done with HIGH SCHOOL yet. It’s been publicly stated that she was working on her follow-up album as long ago as 2015 – which is crazy to think about since it’s STILL not released. It’ll be interesting to see how her sound and lyrical content changes since she’s now 26 and many things in the world have changed since 2013. This is easily one of my most anticipated releases of the year: fingers crossed we get it soon.

Taylor Swift (TBD – probably fall). There are a few reasons why I think Taylor’s releasing new music this year. One is that there are specific days marked in her official 2019 calendar. If you’re a fan of Taylor’s, you know that she doesn’t do stuff like that without reason. She also said in 2018 that her next album will be out before she’s 30 and she turns 30 in December of 2019. One more reason is because throughout her career, she’s released albums every two years (minus the 3 years between 1989 and reputation, this has been the case every time). rep came out in November of 2017. THIS IS MY BIGGEST WISH!

Vampire Weekend (SOON PLEASE). Dear god, I’ve been talking about this for years at this point. I know for a fact they are dropping their album this year, but there’s still no confirmed release date. I NEED this album.

Thanks for reading! I know that 2019 is going to be an AMAZING year for music and it’s already started off on such a great foot. Did I miss any albums you’re excited about this year? Let me know.

  • Kristin

1 comment on “My 2019 Music Guide: Anticipated Releases & Wish List

  1. nice list..
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