Do you miss bands from the 60s-90s? Well they may not be as lost in time as you think. Check out these iconic artists who are still releasing new albums!
Do you ever look at some of the artists today and think, “Man, what happened to music?” Or maybe you just love indulging in nostalgic feelings for a time you weren’t even alive, which I have to admit is definitely the case for me. I was recently looking into the new albums that came out last month (or were scheduled to come out this December), when I recognized a lot of familiar faces. They may not be as popular as they once were, they may have left their famed band altogether, but so many of our favorite artists from the 70s, 80s, and 90s have been banging out hit albums right under our noses this whole time. So instead of subjecting you to the Luke Bryans and G-Eazys of today, I decided to compile a list of 5 of my favorite oldie but goodie artists who just released new music, and review each of their albums!
1. Noel Gallagher of Oasis
Oasis is one of the most iconic 90s bands. Their song “Wonderwall” has become the staple of every acoustic cover artist, and I must admit “Champagne Supernova” is one of my all-time favorite songs. While we all know the Gallagher brothers broke up the band back in 2009, what you may not know is that Noel Gallagher started his own band, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, in 2010. I know, I know, we all miss Liam Gallagher, but I got to say Noel’s band really does hold its own. While it still has that classic Britpop and rock feel we loved so much in Oasis, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds have some unique baroque and psychedelic influences to them as well. With two hit albums already in the bag, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds just released their latest album, Who Built the Moon?, on November 24th.
Who Built the Moon? is probably Noel Gallagher’s most uniquely ambitious album yet. With its clear jazz and disco influences, I could see this album easily becoming his most successful. It’s nice when you see artists who are able to take inspiration from their old work, but not find themselves stuck in it, and I think Noel really shows his ability to do so in Who Built the Moon?. This album definitely sounds like an alt rock album of the newer generation, especially in tracks like “She Taught Me How To Fly” and “Dead in the Water.” It was also clear that Noel put a lot of emphasis on the instrumentals of this album, as in “Fort Knox,” a risk which I believe paid off. If you still have an undying love for the Gallaghers and are looking for some new, alternative rock music with an echo of the 90s, then definitely give this album a listen!
I can’t believe how young they are in this picture. Due to their longevity, U2 is arguably one of the most influential rock bands of our time. Started in 1976, U2 has been pumping out album after album, with over 14 full albums on their current discography. Now I know the whole “loading the entirety of Songs of Innocence onto every iPhone” thing back in 2014 really rubbed people the wrong way, but how can you hate on the people who brought you songs like “Beautiful Day” and “With or Without You?” And let’s not forget “Where the Streets Have No Name.” That song has special sentimental value to me because my father used to play it while my sister and I made up dances when we were young. But we all know that U2 has more than nostalgic glory to give because their latest album, Songs of Experience, was just released on December 1st.
Right off the bat with “Love Is All We Have Left,” I was feeling Songs of Experience exponentially more than Songs of Innocence. Years in the making, U2’s 14th album comes with 17 unique tracks. That same ethereal rock sound that U2 executes so well is still there, but this album manages to feel new. The band has recently been talking about crossing into the worlds of R&B, hip-hop, and pop, and those musical influences really show in this album. Songs featuring artist Kendrick Lamar give off this vibe more than any other. Hearing Kendrick on new tracks like “American Soul” was such a cathartic experience, watching the old and new blend together so well. If you will always have a place in your heart for Bono, but would love to see U2 evolve, this album is definitely worth your time.
3. Morrissey of The Smiths
Everyone who loves to indulge their inner 80s sad boy knows of the beauty that is The Smiths. Or maybe you first heard of them when Zooey Deschanel sang “There is a Light That Never Goes Out” in 500 Days of Summer. Either way, we are all big fans. Any time you let Morrissey serenade you with “How Soon is Now?” (another dance party favorite of my youth) or “Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want” is time well spent. While The Smiths haven’t been active since 1987, Morrissey has been releasing his own music. His most recent album, Low in High School, which came out on the 17th of November, has helped heal my “missing The Smiths” wounds.
I started bingeing all of Low in High School as soon as it was released on Spotify at midnight on November 17th, and yes I chose this album over Jaden Smith’s new album release, a choice I do not regret. While a lot of people are saying that this album is nothing special, I really enjoyed it. He may not have pushed any musical boundaries, but this is the same solemn Morrissey we know and love, and there isn’t anything wrong with that. Right now I have to say “Home Is a Question Mark” is my favorite track on the album, but I am open to suggestions. If you still love the sounds of The Smiths, then Low in High School is worth checking out.
Ah yes, our favorite Icelandic Queen. Bjork has been an oddity in her fame, as most people doing the kind of music she makes never seem to make it nearly as big as she has. My friend joked that because Iceland is so small in population, the whole country just has to join together and support whatever celebrity they can get. Her voice is so angelic, it always reminds me of those ancient Swedish herd calls (I promise I mean that in a good way Bjork). While it’s going to be hard to outdo Post and Homogenic, her latest album Utopia, which came out November 24th, really holds its own against her most renowned albums.
Her album art has always been a little questionable, but the sheer, raw talent of her musical abilities I think gives her a free pass in that regard. Utopia, Bjork’s 10th album, if you can believe it, is so whimsical and elegant; it’s hard to not let it transport you to another world 30 seconds into “Arisen My Sense.” The heavy use of the flute really pays off in this “folktronica” album. Personally, I am really feeling “The Gate” and “Future Forever,” but the whole album is a masterpiece. If you love Bjork, or any folk music for that matter, definitely queue up Utopia on your Up Next playlist.
5. The Rolling Stones
Via Rolling Stone
The Rolling Stones are probably the most iconic rock band of all time. Everyone has heard of them, like them or not, and if you don’t know the words to “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” then you’re lying. Some of my earliest memories include jamming out to “Paint it Black” on SingStar with my sister. It’s hard not to love, or at least appreciate everything they did in their time. While the band is still considered “active” according to Wikipedia, we all know things haven't been the same. This one is a little bit of a cheat because while their latest release wasn’t an original album, it did consist of never before released live recordings from the 1960s. On Air was released on December 1st and consists of an hour and a half of pure nostalgia.
This album functions as a time machine as you listen to tracks from Saturday Club and Yeah Yeah, you really feel yourself standing in the audience of a crowded 1964 live show. Listening to tracks like “Everybody Needs Somebody To Love - Top Gear/1965” and the announcer’s intro in “Carol - Saturday Club/1964” gave me goosebumps, and will do the same to anyone who listens to this release. Reliving the glory of The Rolling Stones’ early work is best listened to alone late one night with earbuds in and eyes closed. If you love feeding the bug of nostalgia, then give On Air a full listen through because this album is out now!
From Bjork’s folk to Morrissey’s solemn vocals, there have been so many new releases from the oldies but goodies to keep you busy for a while. I hope this list was able to shed light on recent albums you may not have heard yet. Definitely give these albums a listen, share this post with friends, and comment with which albums you found yourself falling in love with the most!
**Featured image via OhFact!