Besides the exciting offerings in pop and hip-hop music, there are several albums to get excited for in the alternative music genre including new music from Bon Iver, Angel Olsen, Regina Spektor, and more. We’re pretty excited for the arrray of records that will be available coming this Fall and Winter, so without further adieu, here are Top 10 Alternative Album Releases of 2016.
Besides making appearances on both Chance the Rapper and Kanye West’s latest records, in addition to hosting/headlining the Eaux Claires Festival, it’s been five years since we’ve seen individual material from Bon Iver. But a few days ago, the alternative artist debuted two extended cuts off his forthcoming record, 22, A Million. The two songs are hardly reminiscent of old Bon Iver material and instead reflect giant leaps the producer has made since For Emma, Forever Ago. According to a press release about 22, A Million, the album is “part love letter, part final resting place of two decades of searching for self-understanding like a religion. And the inner-resolution of maybe never finding that understanding.” We’re excited for Bon Iver’s next project and the guests he’ll be featuring to bring it to life.
Bon Iver Tour Dates: October 18 – October 26
Swedish singer/songwriter Kristian Matsson, aka Tallest Man on Earth, has released two singles this Summer, and they are both deeply gorgeous and compelling, perfectly illustrating Matsson as an artist who has only grown since his last record. The latest single, “Rivers“, has passion, immediacy, and a lovely arrangement of horn and piano. The latest single follows “Time of Blue“ which was released back in June and was just as widely received. Though we’re unsure when Matsson will announce his new record, we think it’s definitely due out in 2016.
Tallest Man on Earth Tour Dates: August 28 – October 8
It’s been a few years since the indie-tronic band Phantogram released a new record, but we’re expected to see something from the alternative music duo on September 16th. The new record, aptly titled Three, has so far been preceded by three new singles, “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore“, “Run Run Blood“, and “Cruel World“. “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore” signals a more darker tone that will be present on the album, and in regards to the other material we’ll see on Three, band member Sarah Barthel has described it as “boombastic” and “heavy”. Last year, we saw Phantogram pair up with Big Boi, write, and perform under the name Big Grams. We’re interested to see if any of those hip-hop influences make their way onto Three as well.
Phantogram Tour Dates: September 29 – November 5
Angel Olsen announced that she would be releasing My Woman, her next record, on September 2nd. Though it’s a big style departure from her country folk inspired Burn Your Fire For No Witness, the more synth-driven album won’t be any less compelling. Angel Olsen crosses the subjects of artistry, femininity, and relationships, making My Woman an even more personal record than what we’ve seen from her before. Olsen will also be touring in the fall to promote the new record, making this a truly exciting year for one of the most realized and brave artists to date.
Angel Olsen: September 9 – October 1
It’s been three years since the release of Hummingbird, the sophomore record to come from the Local Natives, a Cali based indie rock band who first took off in 2008. The new album, titled Sunlit Youth, will come out September 9th. The new record will include already released singles “Villainy“ and “Past Lives“. Local Natives are currently on a massive world tour in promotion of Sunlit Youth. We’re pretty excited for what the Local Natives have come up with for their long awaited third LP.
Local Natives Tour Dates: September 14 – October 26
The Head and the Heart have been busy at work on their third LP since the release of 2013’s Let’s Be Still, and the work certainly shows, as band member Charity Rose Thielen states this album as being the first where each of them fell into their true voices. The forthcoming record, Signs of Light, has been preceded by singles “All We Ever Knew“, “Library Magic“, and “Colors“, all which point to Signs of Light being a more synth-driven record and definitely their best to date. Signs of Light will be available September 9th.
The Head and the Heart Tour Dates: August 28 – November 7
Back in 2011, Grouplove dropped one of the most interesting takes on alt-pop music via their album Never Trust a Happy Song. Now, they are getting ready to release their third LP, the follow-up to 2013’s Spreading Rumors. The new album, which contains the hit single “Do You Love Someone” will drop on September 9th. The album will be titled Big Mess, and was introduced with this truly wacky 3-minute trailer, showing us that Grouplove certainly haven’t lost their edge.
Grouplove Tour Dates: October 5 – November 18
Devendra Banhart, lovingly considered the subcultural hero of the freak-folk movement, will be releasing his ninth studio album next month. The new record will be titled Ape in the Pink Marble and was brought to completion with Banhart’s former Mala (2013) collaborators Noah Georgeson and Josiah Steinbrick. Banhart has shared a single from the 13 track record titled “Middle Names“, a song both sweet and sad, characterized by his gentle vocals and emotive guitar playing.
After a four year break, Regina Spektor has finally announced the upcoming release of her seventh studio album: Remember Us to Life. Though Spektor held off the release of her seventh record for what seemed like forever, she’s been present and productive in the New York City independent music scene, her home for several years now. The album announcement is accompanied by the release of “Bleeding Heart”, Spektor’s first single in three years. Remember Us to Life will be released on September 30th and is currently available for pre-order.
Regina Spektor Tour Dates: September 29 – October 18
After seeing all of the Warpaint members engage in their own music projects since the release of their 2014 self-titled debut, we weren’t sure if we would see the band put out a sophomore record. But the band is back together to release Heads Up on September 23rd. The band, having the freedom to create precisely what they wanted, truly evolved through the making of Heads Up. You can check out “New Song“, their latest single, for a taste of what you’ll hear on Heads Up and the upcoming Warpaint Tour.
Warpaint Tour Dates: September 19 – October 27