Posted on03 January 2014 10:24 PM GMT

The Future of Music Online 2014

Music IndustryBeyoncéFuture of Music2014 Album Release Schedule2014 Musical TrendsFKA TwigsEmikaSam SmithTinasheSophieiTunes RadioVideo AlbumVisual AlbumInteractive AlbumFuture of Music OnlineFuture of Music Online 2014Multimedia ExtravaganzaInteractive Music VideosInstant Album ReleaseBanksGeorge EzraKelelaLuke Sital-SinghSamphaTove LoR&BUrban House MusicSynth PopOld School Hip HopDaisy AgeCinematronica+-
2014EmaJolly480

2013 was actually a pretty good year for music - highly prolific, and eclectic, and thanks to Beyoncé, it also offered up a couple of firsts vs the old school record industry. British electronica artist Emika / Ema Jolly produced my favourite long player for 2013, and as you can see from the other entries - hip hop, R&B, percussive indie and electronica also feature strongly.

 

NOTE - this blog post will be updated throughout the year with album release details ...

 

My Top 10 Albums of 2013

  1. DVA - Emika
  2. Body Music - AlunaGeorge
  3. The Bones of What You Believe - Chvrches
  4. Shulamith - Poliça
  5. Reflektor - Arcade Fire
  6. Zeitgeist - Camo & Krooked
  7. After Dark 2 - Italians Do It Better
  8. Old - Danny Brown
  9. Cut 4 Me - Kelela
  10. Yeezus - Kanye West


5 Musical Trends for 2014

 

 

UK etc. Launch of iTunes Radio - iTunes’s Spotify competitor is now very imminent - it has appeared very briefly each time I reset my iPhone to factory settings recently - Americans have had it since September (you get it ad-free with iTunes Match), we’re just waiting for someone to hit the switch over here - as a Spotify fan though will it offer me anything different / better? - is Apple a little late to this party?

 

Instant Album Release - ’A la Beyoncé’ - Beyoncé is an absolute heroine for doing this, can only really apply to big established artists - creates instant hype and demand - great way to sell whole album of tracks and avoid piracy - need to know someone at iTunes ideally for maximum instant exposure and need big fan network to promote on your behalf

 

Video Album Release - I had already predicted this trend a couple of years ago - so thank you Beyoncé for leading the way. Next we will see more of a linear narrative - something much more like a movie / soundtrack. Soundtrack albums have always done quite well as they tie emotion to a specific arc of narrative events - this is also what can make all the tracks on an album relevant - rather than just a few standout cuts ...

 

Multimedia Extravaganza - I predicted this last year, following on from Björk’s Biophila App affair. No one though has really as yet taken up the reins on this. Metric had an interactive Synthetica App which I got bored with fairly quickly. I am expecting more of an immersive album experience - linking ’making-of’ videos with random video blogs, interactive apps, photography, various interviews and perspectives and a properly immersive music experience where you can almost make your own version of said album and publish it back for fan consumption!

 

More interactive Videos - along the lines of last year’s Bob Dylan (Like a Rolling Stone) and Pharrel Williams (Happy) efforts - possibly next time involving live interaction / participation from fans - props to Bob and Pharrell’s teams

 


10 New Artists for 2014

 

 

Banks - Fusing dark R&B with thunderous electronic grooves (backed by BBC, MTV, iTunes, Spotify)

 

FKA Twigs - Mesmerizing haunting electronica (backed by BBC, Spotify, Me)

 

George Ezra - Bluesy, accoustic ballads (backed by BBC, MTV, iTunes)

 

Kelela - LA-based singer at forefront of experimental R&B (backed by BBC, GlobalGrind, Me)

 

Luke Sital-Singh - Dreamy singer-songwriter (backed by BBC, iTunes, Spotify)

 

- Entrancing Danish electropopper (backed by iTunes, Spotify, Me)

 

Sam Smith - Disclosure collaborator goes solo (backed by BBC, MTV, iTunes)

 

Sampha - SBTRKT and Jessie Ware collaborator goes solo (backed by BBC, iTunes, GlobalGrind)

 

Sophie - Mysterious blippy electronica producer - resposible for ’Bipp’ in 2013 (backed by Me)

 

Tove Lo - Sultry Swedish Electropopper (backed by Spotify, Me)

 

See ’Sound of and New Artists for 2014’ post for larger selection

 


6 Key Sounds / Themes for 2014

 

 

R&B - Along futuristic lines of The Weeknd, PARTYNEXTDOOR and female contemporaries Kelela and Tinashe - should be big this year

 

Urban House - Not quite garage, not quite 2-step - but along similar direction to Disclosure

 

Synth Pop - Chvrches were huge in 2013 and Betty Who and Sohn are carrying the torch into 2014

 

Old School Hip Hop - A Daisy Age renaissance as hip hop mixtapes get more organically funky and less ratatat - also expect more eclecticism a la Kanye and Danny Brown

 

Cinematronica - Ethereal, atmospheric vocal electronica

 

Early 80’s Dance Pop - I do expect Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories to influence producers towards a warmer, more analogue pallet of sounds - just check out Skream’s new direction for an example of this:

 

 


2014 Essential Albums Release Schedule

(personal preferences only)

 

#★ = Number of stars - out of 5

 

January

 

Above & Beyond - Acoustic 5★

Angel Haze - Dirty Gold 5★ (actually released 27 Dec 2013 but missed by most - my first essential release of the year!)

Ásgeir - In The Silence 4★

I Break Horses - Chiaroscuro 5★

Kyla La Grange - Cut Your Teeth 5★

Malia - Convergence 4★

Warpaint - Warpaint 4★

 

February

 

Babymetal - Babymetal 4★

Echaskech - Origin 4★

Katy B - Little Red 5★
Lisa Stansfield - Seven 3★

Planningtorock - All Love’s Legal 4★

St Vincent - St Vincent 5★

 

March

 

Ava Luna - Electric Ballroom 3★

Fred V & Grafix - Recognise 5★

Imogen Heap - Sparks 4★

Christina Perri - Head or Heart 4★
Mø - No Mythologies to Follow 5★

Pharrell Williams - G I R L 4★

Phonique - Saudade (The Best of) 5★
Tensnake - Glow 4★

The War on Drugs - Lost in the Dream 4★

 

April

 

Dieter Meier - Out of Chaos 4★

EMA - The Future’s Void 4★

Iggy Azalea - The New Classic 4★

Kelis - Food 3★

Lindsey Stirling - Shatter Me 4★

Lisa Ramona - Arcadia 4★

Rebecca & Fiona - Beauty Is Pain 5★

Sohn - Tremors 5★

Swedish House Mafia - One Last Tour 4★

Thievery Corporation - Saudade 5★

Todd Terje - It’s Album Time 5★

Wye Oak - Shriek 4★

 

 

May

 

Brian Eno & Karl Hyde - Someday World 3★

Chromeo - White Women 4★

Coldplay - Ghost Stories 4★

Foxes - Glorious 4★

Lily Allen - Sheezus 3★

Lykke Li - I Never Learn 3★

Michael Jackson - Xscape 3★

Royksopp & Robyn - Do It Again EP 5★

Samaris - Silkidrangar 4★

Sam Smith - In The Lonely Hour 4★

 

June

 

Clean Bandit - New Eyes 5★

Deadmau5 - While (1<2) 4★

Die Antwoord - Donker Mag 4★

Jack White - Lazaretto 4★

Lana Del Rey - Ultraviolence 4★

Lone - Reality Testing 4★

Plastikman - EX 5★

Ronika - Selectadisc 5★

Yagya - Sleepygirls 4★

 

July

 

Jungle - Jungle 4★

La Roux - Trouble in Paradise 4★

Sia - 1000 Forms of Fear 4★

 

August

 

Basement Jaxx - Junto 5★

The Bug - Angels & Devils 4★

FKA Twigs - LP1 5★

Freemasons - Shakedown 3 4★

Imogen Heap - Sparks 4★

Yelle - Complètement fou 4★

 

September

 

Alt-J - This Is All Yours 4★

Aphex Twin - Syro 4★

Banks - Goddess 5★

Gazelle Twin - Unflesh 4★

Goat - Commune 3★

Hudson Mohawke - Chimes 4★

Jennifer Hudson - Jhud 4★

Karen O - Crush Songs 4★

The Kooks - Listen 4★

Lia Ices - Ices 3★

Lights - Little Machines 3★

Metrik - Universal Language 4★

Prince - Art Official Age 3★

Prince / 3rdEyeGirl - PlectrumElectrum 3★

SBTRKT - Wonder Where We Land 4★

Style of Eye - Footprints 3★

Thom Yorke - Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes 4★

Tove Lo - Queen of the Clouds 5★

 

October

 

Beatrice Eli - Die Another Day 4★

Betty Who - Take Me When You Go 4★

Broods - Evergreen 4★

Caribou - Our Love 4★

Ella Henderson - Chapter One 4★

Eskimo Recordings - The Green Collection 4★

Flight Facilities - Down to Earth 4★

Flying Lotus - You’re Dead 4★

Gorgon City - Sirens 4★

Groove Armada - Late Night Tales presents Automatic Soul 5★

Jessie Ware - Tough Love 4★

Kiasmos - Kiasmos 5★

Kiesza - Sound of a Woman 5★

Knife Party - Abandon Ship 4★

Lisa Ekdahl - Look to your own heart 5★

Run the Jewels - Run the Jewels 2 4★

Tinashe - Aquarius 4★

The Ting Tings - Super Critical 4★

 

November

 

Andy Stott - Faith in Strangers 4★

Arca - Xen 4★

Azealia Banks - Broke with Expensive Taste 4★

Big K.R.I.T. - Cadillactica 4★

Clark - Clark 4★

Clean Bandit - New Eyes (SE) 5★

Fred V and Grafix - Unrecognisable 5★

Hunger Games - Mockingjay Pt. 1 Soundtrack (Lorde, Chvrches etc.) 4★

Iamamiwhoami - Blue 5★

Iggy Azalea - Reclassified 4★

Oh Land - Earth Sick 4★

Royksopp - The Inevitable End 5★

 

December

 

~

 

2015 >

 

Above & Beyond - We Are All We Need

AraabMuzik - Electronic Reality

Charli XCX - Sucker

Étienne de Crécy - Superdiscount 3

Glass Candy - Body Work

Marina and the Diamonds - Froot

 

 

TBC 2015

 

Adele - TBA
Amanda Mair - TBA
Annie - TBA
The Avalanches - TBA

Björk - TBA
Brazilian Girls - TBA
Burial - TBA
The Cardigans - TBA
Daroc - TBA
Desire - TBA

Frank Ocean - TBA
Garbage - TBA
Grimes - TBA
Hard-Fi - TBA
Jamie Woon - TBA
Kanye West - TBA
Karin Park - TBA
Madeon - TBA
Mikky Ekko - TBA

Moko - TBA
Monarchy - TBA
Mylo - TBA

Nite Jewel - TBA
Peaches - TBA
Portishead - TBA
Rickie Lee Jones - TBA
Robyn - TBA
Roisin Murphy - TBA
Solange Knowles - TBA

Vanbot - TBA

Stefan
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