Following yesterday’s look at the albums which have already been given confirmed release dates, welcome to Part Two, in which we cover the teasers, acts that have either promised to release something new in 2018; confirmed that they are writing/recording; or are generally just likely to put something out since it’s been a while and we’re all getting impatient.
Say hello to the likely lads (and ladies) of 2018:
Background: The divisive J-pop-death-metal behemoths last released an album in April 2016, and have recently announced a host of festivals for 2018. Is this the start of Babymetal 3.0?
Chance of release: If there’s going to be an album before those festival dates, expect some suitably cryptic announcements fairly soon.
Background: Frank Carter’s little bro and co never did quite capitalise on brilliant 2009 debut Dead Hearts, but after reuniting and making some bold statements about album number two, maybe this is their year.
Chance of release: With zero action online since April, it’s looking unlikely, but remember, Goonies never say die.
Background: The prog metallers’ debut was one of the surprise delights of 2016, and one of the most inventive interpretations of rock in some time, so the follow-up has big boots to fill, but also firm foundations to build on and an open ticket to anywhere.
Chance of release: The band tweeted “Album 2 finished!” mid-December, so it feels safe to say it will be with us sooner rather than later.
Background: Following the tragic death of bassist Jonathan Athon in 2014, Georgia sludge hammers Black Tusk made an emotional comeback with Pillars of Ash in 2016.
Chance of release: The band entered the studio in December, so we can probably expect something in Q2.
Bullet For My Valentine
Background: 2015’s Venom was a partial return to form for the beligerant Brits, but with only two of the four original bandmates left, a firm planting of the flag in metal’s craggy, windmilling face is needed to solidify that comeback. That said, they are currently promising “a different sounding record” that will “take a lot of people by surprise”. Eek!
Chance of Release: The band recently reported that they are in “the demo phase”, so it’s possible.
Background: Riding the purplest of purple patches, the ever-reliable Maryland groovers have been on a peerless run of late, their last two albums arguably containing their best material ever, which is really saying something. Have you heard Blast Tyrant?!
Chance of release: New songs have been steadily dripping into the live show throughout 2017, so we know they’re writing…
Background: The singer of Northern Irish classic rockers The Answer is going solo for the first time with promises of country, soul, Celtic roots and laid back folk rock.
Chance of release: Neeson is due to enter a Nashville studio in January, with late 2018 pencilled in for release.
Dance Laury Dance
Background: It’s been four years since the hard-living Québécois rock n rollers last released a full length, so definitely time for another casual saunter to the dancefloor to throw some drunken shapes.
Chance of release: Although there’s been no announcement yet, talk of pre-production has littered Facebook of late like chips on a Sunday morning London pavement.
Devin Townsend Band
Background: Ol’ Hevy Devy is always in the lab concocting something or other, but whether we get a new DTP album, some more Casualties of Cool or his long-fabled symphonic cock opera The Moth remains to be seen.
Chance of release: Fairly high. With Devin the question is normally what rather than when.
Background: Jason Aalon Butler’s post-letlive. project with Stephen Harrison of The Chariot has so far only played a handful of gigs and released one song, but with a show at the Regent in Los Angeles lined up for the start of 2018, evidently more is yet to come…eventually.
Chance of release: Reasonably high, but how, what and when is all still murkier than a pissy puddle in a thunder storm.
Five Finger Death Punch
Background: The Nevada heavyweights have had a rough old run of it recently, but with label troubles behind them and Ivan Moody back in front, it’s time to remind the world just how hard they can hit.
Chance of release: The band has promised we’ll see a new album in 2018.
Background: A new Papa Emeritus was unveiled at the end of September, so something is clearly afoot in the clandestine cabals of the melodic classic rock clique, and 2018 would be a great time to capitalise on the roaring success of Squarehammer and Bloodstock.
Chance of release: Promises have been made, plans insinuated, and directions discussed, but the band are by nature shrouded in more secrecy than The Great Hoofed One himself so…
Background: Canada’s leading purveyors of angular hardcore noise tweaked the formula a little on 2015’s Success, turning up the alt-rock and turning down the frothy terror, so the follow-up could be literally anything.
Chance of release: Recording is due to start early January, so a late Spring/early Summer release seems fair.
Frank Carter & the Rattlesnakes
Background: Albums one and two were mostly written at the same time, and 2017 ended on a massive high for the Rattlesnakes with a sold-out show at Brixton Academy, so as Yazz and her Plastic Population once sang, the only way is up.
Chance of release: Frank and Dean are constantly writing, so it’s certainly not out of the question.
Background: After signing to Roadrunner and testing the waters with a pair of well-received EPs, the British alt-rock upstarts will hopefully be looking to seal the deal with a new full-length showcasing their major label credentials.
Chance of release: Reasonable, although almost certainly not until the end of the year, or maybe even early 2019.
Background: Frank Turner’s gnarly hardcore sideshow has announced a mini UK tour for January, so the irreverent wheels are definitely back in motion.
Chance of release: Hard to say, but if new music is aired on tour, it seems likely recorded versions will follow soon after.
Background: Long Island prog metallers with a penchant for weird, obscure time signatures and labyrinthine solos prepare to lead us all on another merry jaunt into the unknown corners of their twisted, fevered minds.
Chance of release: “Big news in regards to the next album coming at you in just a few weeks” – 12 December
Background: The former Evile guitarist and one-man thrash monsoon has been working on a second solo album for some time now, promising “a fusing of old thrash and old death”.
Chances of release: The album is apparently “in the works” and we know some songs are finished, so maybe summer?
Background: London-based stoner doom legends Orange Goblin have seen their stock rise considerably in 2017, in no small part due to frontman Ben Ward’s help in keeping Metal Hammer (and its staff) alive, so expect a new album to be received with more warmth than a million burning suns in a triple lined tea cosy next to a fire.
Chance of release: Recording is due to start in January with an end of May release date penciled in.
The Pearl Harts
Background: Garage duo The Pearl Harts impressed MonkHammer a lot when they supported Black Moth last month with their attitude, riffs and dedication to devastation, and this year’s singles Hit The Bottle and Lara are both certified grunge punk earworms.
Chance of release: The girls promised an album soon at said London show, and we have no reason to suspect they were lying!
Background: The electro punks’ last album was a scrappy affair, and arguably their weakest yet, featuring a couple of bangers alongside by-numbers EDM and the worst collaboration of all time (hello, Sleaford Mods).
Chance of release: Back in September, the band promised a single by the end of 2017 and an album in 2018. Nothing yet though.
Background: It’s now almost nine years since the industrial fire-starters last released an album, and although they’re not known for their haste, the individual members all seem to have rested their side-projects for the time being, so we are hopefully closer to album number seven than we were this time last year.
Chance of release: Back in March, guitarist Richard Kruspe revealed that the band have some 35 songs “almost finished”, so it’s probably worth a fiver at your local branch of William Hill.
Background: 2015’s comeback album, Freedom, was disappointing to say the least, but with the legacy of a whole scene on their shoulders, that was hardly surprising. However, while the fire is still there on stage, and it still is, there’s still hope.
Chance of Release: The band posted a number of photos on social media in November confirming that they are in the studio, so definitely maybe.
Background: Big Robby Zobby has worked to a rigid three year cycle for his last three albums, so statistically 2019 is more likely, but we know he has been working on new music with John 5 so you never know. Most of the third year is probably spent writing a 462-word nonsense album title.
Chance of release: Slim, but not outside the realms of possibility.
Background: Since laying down the blueprint with 2010’s freewheeling, discordant and rather perfectly titled Blackjazz, the Norwegian experimentalists have been getting slowly more palatable with every passing release, so perhaps the next one will be the one to blow them wide open.
Chance of release: Jorgen Munkeby and co entered the studio earlier this month so another potential Q2 release.
Background: Skindred are another one we know have been working on new material, and with a tour dubbed Start The Machine due to start in the new year, could that be the working title for an album?
Chance of release: The ragga-metal party starters can decimate any festival they play, so new jams would be best released in time for the season, but without any concrete news, that’s a skank in the dark.
Stone Temple Pilots
Background: Unveiling both a new singer and a new song last month was a clear statement of intent from the DeLeo brothers, who clearly have no intention of putting STP to pasture just yet following the sad deaths of both Scott Weiland and Chester Bennington.
Chance of release: It would quite a bold (and dumb) move to introduce a new singer and then bugger off for months on end to write/record, so chances seem pretty decent.
Background: The trad metal troupe’s last album proper was released in 2015, since when they have generally dicked around a bit with acoustic covers and live albums, so now it’s time to get back to business.
Chance of release: An album titled Used Future has been promised for early 2018.
Background: Will they/won’t they/will they/won’t they? Is there even any point in discussing this anymore?
Chance of release: Tom Morello reckons it’s almost complete, but he’s named after a cherry so he would say that.
Background: The turbo-charged Michigan marauders toned down the wilder shades of punk on their second album for a more radio-friendly hard rock sound, so album three is the one to reveal which direction they’re pointing their dicks from now on.
Chance of release: The boys are in the studio as we speak, drums finished, so expect news soon.
On top of that little lot, there are of course hundreds of others who have been suspiciously quiet on social media, booked eyebrow-raising tours for 2018, or simply fall under the category of “it’s been a while”, so let’s raise a glass to the likes of Beartooth, Bring Me The Horizon, Cancer Bats, Crossfaith, Fucked Up, The Hell, Lamb of God, Less Than Jake and Parkway Drive, all of whom could well make a comeback in 2018.
Come back tomorrow for our third and final gaze in the black crystal balls of doom, and don’t forget to check out Part One for those albums we know are definitely ready.