The Universe. Some scratches of Beryllium. Diving. The Navel of the Galaxies. Maybe god. Maybe the void. Maybe you. Maybe it's just cryptical

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

2009: An Anticipated Year in Music

Place: the Music Map
Mood: excited
Song: Wrong * Depeche Mode

So much in one year. My top 5 artists are all releasing an album in 2009, and those are Tori Amos, Depeche Mode, Madeleine Peyroux, Peter Gabriel and Murcof. Well technically 3 of them, since the latter two are not confirmed yet. And that makes me goddamn-frenzy! So here is a peak at what I already know. I'm also sharing some favorites from each, in case you'd like to discover my musical world.

01. Madeleine Peyroux, Bare Bones
Expected release date: March 10, 2009 through Rounder/Universal

Screw the much-publicized Norah Jones, Peyroux is just the best voice in Jazz currently. Often compared to Billie Holilday, she has a singular touch, and with each release, she has consolidated her place on the music map.

I was introduced to Madeleine Peyroux by my dear friend Oskar, very lately, in summer 2008. And since then, she won me over.

Of her three albums, my favorite remains her third one, Half the Perfect World, which showcases a very mature Peyroux covering Leonard Cohen, Joni Mitchell, Tom Waits and Serge Gainsbourg brilliantly. With her fourth one

My 5 picks:
From Dreamland (1996): La Vie en Rose
From Careless Love (2004): J'ai Deux Amours, This Is Heaven to Me
From Half the Perfect World (2006): Half the Perfect World, La Javanaise

Peyroux will be touring starting March 10 in support of her new release in the US and moving to Europe.
More info:

02. Depeche Mode, Sounds of the Universe
Expected release date: April 20, 2009 through Mute/EMI

Depeche Mode doesn't need to be introduced at all. They have been making massive electronic music since their debut album in 1980. And while they have had rough times and lost key members, the now-famous trio Dave Gahan (lead vocals), Martin L. Gore (guitars, vocals, songwriting) and Andrew Fletcher (keyboards), has become sort of a legend, thanks to much-acclaimed albums like Violator (1989), Songs of Faith and Devotion (1993) and even their last effort Playing the Angel (2005) which was hailed by fans and critics as well.

I am pretty much excited about this release since I have high expectations after Playing the Angel. The band is as good as ever, judging by the leading single off the new album, Wrong. I thank my longtime friend Aleksandra for once sending me the Violator CD which stayed in my CD player for ages!

My 5 picks:
From Speak and Spell (1981): Just Can't Get Enough
From Violator (1989): World in My Eyes, Enjoy the Silence
From Ultra (1997): Home
From Playing the Angel (2005): Precious

The Touring the Universe world tour will kick off in May in Europe before hitting the US in the summer.
More info:

03. Tori Amos, Abnormally Attracted to Sin
Expected release date: May 19, 2009 through Universal Republic

I have been listening to Tori Amos for more than 12 years, and no wonder she's still my favorite artist since ages now. She always moves me, whether it's her songs or compositions, or her intricate playing of the grand Bosendorfer piano, the harpsichord, the hammond organ, the Wurlitzer or the clavichord. And yes, she plays them all.

Her extensive catalog though is not only limited to the piano field. Sure she has hits that are piano-centered like the much acclaimed Silent All these Years, Winter, Crucify or Cornflake Girl, but she can also hit uncharted territories and experiment with electronica on songs like Hotel, Zero Point, Datura and Mountain which I tend to prefer over her intricate piano based songs.

In any way, her lyrics are not to be forgotten. She can easily take on another character to pen a full album (Scarlet's Walk) or a song, and yet she still excels when she writes songs about herself, ranging from sexuality (Icicle) to religion (God) and onto loss (Playboy Mommy). But Amos' real asset are the live performances, and thank god she'll be touring again in 2009.

My 5 picks:
From Under the Pink (1994): Yes, Anastasia
From From the Choirgirl Hotel (1998): Spark
From To Venus & Back (1999): Spring Haze
From Scarlet's Walk (2002): Virginia
From American Doll Posse (2007): Beauty of Speed

Amos will be headlining the SXSW's festival, playing La Zona Rosa on March 19, ahead of a tour to be announced soon.
More info:

04. Peter Gabriel, I/O
Expected release date: 2009

Peter Gabriel has been in the music business since, well, 1967. He was 17 at the time when he founded Genesis. 10 years later, he released his first solo album. And ever since, he hasn't stopped. Needless to say that his work is colossal. Every album of his is a journey. And we are not talking about his exceptional soundtracks.

I believe everyone knows his hit (or is it hot?) single Sledgehammer which he performs at almost every concert of his. Well if you don't, then you must know the video, which is one of MTV's most played videos ever.

But lately his albums take so much time to be produced and we have been waiting for the successor of the magical Up since 2002. Let's hope 2009 will bring the release of the much anticipated I/O.

My 5 picks:
From Peter Gabriel III: Melt (1980): No Self Control
From Peter Gabriel IV: Security (1982): The Rythm of the Heat, San Jacinto
From So (1986): Red Rain
From Up (2002): I Grieve

Peter Gabriel will be touring Latin and South America in mid March.
More info:

05. Murcof, Oceano
Expected release date: 2009 through the Leaf label

I have already presented Fernando Corona (mostly known as Murcof) and his minimalist/electronic music when I reviewed his 2007 monumental album Cosmos.

And with that said, with each of his releases, the word monumental comes to mind, and it quickly erases its predecessor and makes me wonder what is coming next. Martes was an album of pure genius. Every track had its own mark. With Remembranza a more personal work was created. And its sometimes long tracks paved way for what Cosmos would be. A monumental album.

It has been said that the follow-up to Cosmos, Oceano, would see the light in 2009, as the 2008 Versailles Sessions is to be considered a commissioned project and not a follow-up to the 2007 release. And so after having explored so majestically the darker space with tracks like Cuerpo Celeste, Cielo and Cometa, I cannot but be excited over how Murcof will explore the Realm of the Waters on Oceano.

My 5 picks:
From Martes (2002): Mes
From Remembranza (2005): Recuerdos
From Cosmos (2007): Cuerpo Celeste, Cometa
From The Versailles Sessions (2008): Lully's "Truquerie" As Interpreted by an Advanced Script

Murcof has several tour dates in March and April in Europe.
More info:



Post a Comment

<< Home