Check out our Spotify playlist of the biggest album artists of 2023 – we’ll be updating it as they release their new music
The holidays are over, so it’s time to put Mariah Carey back in the loft and start thinking about the future. A raft of big music names have already made plans for 2023, announcing new albums all set to brighten up the first half of the year. Here are the highlights we know about so far:
The first big album of the year is out today. Still shirtless at 75, Iggy Pop shows no sign of slowing down, maintaining a steady solo release schedule since the late Seventies. His last release, Free, was a weird one, but this newbie is a definite fan-pleaser. “The music will beat the shit out of you,” he has said. He’s right.
Atlantic/Gold Tooth, January 6
The fiery quartet have somehow managed to compete in both Eurovision and Italian X Factor without denting their credibility as one of the world’s most exciting rock bands. Two previous albums have been quadruple-platinum hits in their homeland. This third features a guest appearance from Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine and should be the one to take them fully global.
Epic, January 20
Sales were down for Sam Smith’s third album, released during the pandemic, but now it looks like very big things are ahead. The Kim Petras duet Unholy is wonderful dirty fun, and gave the artist their first number one single in the US. If the rest of Gloria is anywhere close to that exciting, it’ll be a cracker.
Capitol, January 27
Queen of Me
Republic, February 3
Man! I feel like a new Shania Twain album! Between 1995 and 2002 the Canadian country pop star released three colossal hit albums in a row, forming the bulk of her 100 million global sales. Since then she’s been fairly quiet but this sixth long-player starts a new chapter that also includes a September 2023 UK arena tour and a spot on the panel of ITV’s Stars in Their Eyes reboot, Starstruck.
This is Why
After various line-up changes, in-fighting and the release of two solo albums by singer Hayley Williams since the last Paramore work, fans of the influential rock band will be relieved that this sixth album exists at all. The two songs revealed so far, the title track and The News, have turned the guitars back up and sound angry and frustrated.
Atlantic, February 10
The two singles released by Pink so far this year don’t give much of a clue to the overall sound of her ninth album. Irrelevant was a bitter protest song prompted by the US Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, with a cry of “Girls just wanna have rights”. On the other hand, Never Gonna Not Dance Again is a breezy disco number that’s pure pop froth. What’s certain, though, is that her summer stadium tour will be an acrobatic must-see.
RCA, February 17
You’d think that the members of Blur would be preoccupied with preparing for their Wembley Stadium reunion in July. But drummer Dave Rowntree releases his debut solo album this month, guitarist Graham Coxon has formed a new duo, The Waeve, with Rose Elinor Dougall, and Damon Albarn has already released four singles from his eighth Gorillaz album. Star guests this time include Stevie Nicks, Beck, Tame Impala and 2022’s biggest selling artist, Bad Bunny.
Parlophone, February 24
Lana Del Rey
Did You Know That There’s a Tunnel Under Ocean Blvd
Lana Del Rey’s impeccable mystique doesn’t extend to disappearing from view for long periods. Alongside Taylor Swift she’s one of music’s most prolific A-listers. This one will be her fourth album in less than four years. The title track was the first to be revealed, and long-term Lana watchers won’t be surprised to hear that it smoulders, swoons and moves at the speed of LA traffic.
Polydor, March 10
In contrast, it’s not often that these hard rocking veterans resurface with new music. This eleventh album follows Hardwired... to Self-Destruct in 2016 and Death Magnetic eight years before that. They won’t be short-changing fans with this collection, which manages to stretch 12 songs out to 77 minutes. The title refers to the first 18 years of life, so expect some nostalgic childhood references amid the guitar fire.
Blackened, April 14
Broken by Desire to Be Heavenly Sent
The Scottish emotion machine announced his second album way back in October and is already omnipresent on social media promotion duties, where his jokey online persona forms an appealing counterpoint to his tear-stained music. So we may have Capaldi fatigue by the time May rolls around, but the popularity of the new songs unveiled so far suggests that’ll take some doing.
EMI, May 19