As we draw ever closer to the end of the year, and everyone starts to choose what they think their favorite albums of the year are, this is the time where the heavy hitters really start to drop. Ellie Goulding and Grimes are both big enough artists that could heavily shift that conversation with their new projects. And in addition to that, we’ve got new music from Ceelo Green, Talib Kweli & 9th Wonder, Eric Church, GoldLink and more. Here are the new albums you need to hear this week.
Ellie Goulding – Delirium
English synthpopper Ellie Goulding has always made great music and grown a steady and hungry fanbase, but 2015 has truly felt like a crossover year. “Love Me Like You Do” and “Outside” were both international smashes and have remained a fixture throughout the year despite dropping in January. Now we’re nearly at the end of the year and finally, her third studio album, Delirium, has arrived. “On My Mind,” the album’s big single, is another Max Martin collaboration that could push the singer from fan favorite to superstar. Lucky for her, Delirium is built with songs like this.
Grimes – Art Angels
The perfectionist muscian Claire Boucher, better known to us as Grimes, drops her fourth studio album in Art Angels this week. It’s been three years since her mainstream breakthrough in Visions, and that’s no accident. It’s speculated that she had another album ready to go in 2014, but ultimately didn’t care for the final product. This followed a polarizing reaction to her one-off single “Go” which some of her audience found to be “too poppy,” whatever that means. Regardless, now she is back with the fairly quickly announced Art Angels and the sound is somewhere in between “Go” and something to be found in Visions. “Flesh Without Blood,” the album’s first official single, is a heavily-layered composition that’s a scrappy rocker with a hint of new wave. Grimes is the master of applying incredible complexity to seemingly simple concepts and Art Angels is another welcomed lesson.
CeeLo Green – Heart Blanche
Let’s just be frank here: Things have not been great for CeeLo Green in the past few years. Following his long and well-respected career in Goodie Mob and Gnarls Barkley and then a surprise turn in the pop world with his solo work and on The Voice, things came to a screeching halt in 2013 when he pleaded no contest to felony possession of Ecstasy and was accused of rape, and then he followed that up with some sincerely dumb comments about how if someone was raped “they would remember.” Since then, he lost all of his TV gigs and has been shunned out of the public eye, but now he’s hoping time heals all wounds enough to make a comeback with Heart Blanche. Still receiving a dose of skepticism with songs like “Robin Williams” — some audiences felt it capitalized on the beloved comedian’s passing — CeeLo has an uphill battle to win back fans, but songs like “Music To My Soul” show some signs of life. No one knows if he’ll rise to where he was before, but Heart Blanche is at least trying to get there musically.
Here are the rest of the week’s releases:
Eric Church – Mr. Misunderstood (Apple Music Exclusive)
Bob Dylan – The Bootleg Series, Vol. 12: The Best of the Cutting Edge 1965-1966
Goldlink – And After That, We Didn’t Talk
Talib Kweli & 9th Wonder – Indie 500
Sam Smith – In The Lonely Hour: Drowning Shadows Edition
Sara Bareilles – What’s Inside: Songs from Waitress
Little Mix – Get Weird
Jamie Woon – Making Time
Floating Points – Elaenia
Rustie – EVENIFUDONTBELIEVE
Tim McGraw – Damn Country Music
Seal – 7
Angie Stone – Dream
Billy Gibbons & the BFG’s – Perfectamundo
Yandel – Dangerous
Ghost Town – Evolution