fall preview 2023

36 Albums We Can’t Wait to Hear This Fall

The heart goes padam for Olivia Rodrigo, Usher, Kylie Minogue, and more.

Photo-Illustration: Vulture; Photos: Ebru Yildiz, Getty, Larissa Hofmann
Photo-Illustration: Vulture; Photos: Ebru Yildiz, Getty, Larissa Hofmann

Autumn is a time for slowing down and girding yourself for the onset of holiday mania. It’s appropriate, then, that this fall’s crop of new albums contains a blend of belters and cozier fare across rock, rap, country, and more. That includes a young pop star aiming to eclipse her smash-hit debut, beloved indie-rockers returning to the styles of their earliest days, and, of course, a new-old Taylor Swift record, among plenty of other fantastic releases. Before the leaves drop, mark your calendars.


Icona Pop, Club Romantech (September 1)

If “Planet of the Bass” is any indication, the world is ready for more Icona Pop. Ten years after their breakout Charli XCX–written hit, “I Love It,” the electropop duo return with Club Romantech, a new album filled with the same sleek silliness they perfected on their 2013 full-length. Of the early single offerings, “Where Do We Go From Here” — a bold, bright, and ridiculous anthem about the mindless bliss of the dance floor — is the standout. —Jason P. Frank 

Jeff Rosenstock, Hellmode (September 1)

Jeff Rosenstock’s album titles sketch an anxious crescendo: 2016’s Worry., 2020’s No Dream, then Hellmode. The new record, which sees the DIY punk hero confronting a world both literally and politically on fire, was recorded at Hollywood’s historic EastWest Studios and with a bigger budget than Rosenstock typically gets, leading him to frame the project as his take on a major-label debut (even though it’s being released on indie Polyvinyl Records). —Justin Curto

Slowdive, Everything Is Alive (September 1)

After waiting 22 years for the Reading shoegazers to release their 2017 self-titled comeback, a six-year gap between LPs doesn’t seem like a big deal. Influenced in part by the deaths of two of the band members’ parents, Everything Is Alive is meant to be joyous and inspiring; its singles, “skin in the game” and “kisses,” are hypnotically gorgeous. —Dan Reilly

Speedy Ortiz, Rabbit Rabbit (September 1)

Superstition, aging, trauma, societal strife, labor solidarity — Sadie Dupuis is tackling a little bit of everything on the band’s fourth full-length. Recorded on ranches in Joshua Tree and Texas, with co-production from Illuminati Hotties’ Sarah Tudzin, Rabbit Rabbit is a record rich in playful, scathing riffs and imagery. —D.R.

Tyler Childers, Rustin’ in the Rain (September 8)

Here’s what makes Tyler Childers such a singular figure in roots music: A year after he put out a triple album of country-gospel songs performed in three separate styles, he’s returning with a set of covers and originals inspired by mid-career Elvis and mules. The rollicking title track — with a slinky, Chuck Berry–ish opening riff — is already a fixture of his live set, while the music video for “In Your Love” depicts a queer love story in rural Appalachia. —J.C.

Ashley McBryde, The Devil I Know (September 8)

Everyone in Nashville will tell you it starts with a good song; few practice what they preach the way Ashley McBryde does. After turning a songwriting retreat with her friends into the inspired Lindeville last year, she’s back with a collection of songs for herself, The Devil I Know — all of which she’s credited on, a rare feat in country. It’s shaping up to be a dynamic collection with introspective strummers like “Light on in the Kitchen” and “Learned to Lie” and punchy cuts like “Made for This.” —J.C.

Olivia Rodrigo, Guts (September 8)

Teen girls (and teen girls at heart), rejoice: Olivia Rodrigo is back to collect your tears. When “vampire,” the first single off her sophomore album, was released in June, it seemed like a harbinger of a new Rodrigo, who turned out to be not all that far from the thrillingly melodramatic Rodrigo. Then “bad idea right?” dropped and was both more brash and funnier than she’d ever been before. Neither is far from Sour, but both showed Rodrigo at her most ambitious. Elsewhere on the track list is a song titled “ballad of a homeschooled girl,” which, given her unpredictable debut, could either be a moody piano sing-along or a pop-punk banger — or somehow both? —J.P.F.

Allison Russell, The Returner (September 8)

Allison Russell’s second solo album brings to mind a verse from the Bible: “Weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.” After reflecting on her escape from abuse on her 2021 breakout, Outside Child, Russell is celebrating her freedom on The Returner. The album has its heavy moments, but it’s largely brighter — and funkier, thanks to a band including former Prince collaborators Wendy & Lisa. —J.C.

Romy, Mid Air (September 8)

Out from behind her guitar in the xx, Romy Madley Croft is ready to dance. Her solo debut is full of textured house music, framed as an ode to queer clubs. Many of the songs, including the Eurodance-inflected “Strong” and meditative opener “Loveher,” came as part of a collaboration with the ascendant producer Fred again.., and the album also features the pioneering trans musician Beverly Glenn-Copeland. —J.C.

V, Layover (September 8)

It’s an emotional time for the BTS Army with Suga recently becoming the third member of the K-pop septet to begin the enlistment process for mandatory service in the South Korean military. But fans can at least soothe their sorrows with V’s debut solo album, a six-track project created in close collaboration with NewJeans creative director Min Hee-jin. Per its announcement, expect to hear R&B, pop, and soul on the track list; so far, he has released two singles, “Love Me Again” and “Rainy Days,” both featuring romantic lyrics and a smooth, understated sound. —Jennifer Zhan

James Blake, Playing Robots Into Heaven (September 8)

James Blake’s music is often described as minimalist. On his sixth album, the British singer-songwriter-producer gets even sparser. There are no featured guests, and its lead single, “Big Hammer,” doesn’t even include his own vocals; instead, Blake is going back to the sound of his earliest releases, stripping away the frills of his newer records for the sparse soulfulness that made us fall in love with the 34-year-old in the first place. —D.R.

Róisín Murphy, Hit Parade (September 8)

As big and kooky of a personality as Róisín Murphy is, the dance icon has always thrived best through close collaboration, whether during her early days in Moloko or her 2005 Ruby Blue linkup with Matthew Herbert. Now, she has finally met her match in the mischievous German producer-DJ Koze, who turns their songs inside out and back again on the years-in-the-making Hit Parade. Murphy transforms across the singles too, going from blissed-out lover on “CooCool” to wannabe Real Housewife on “The Universe” to deep-house diva on “You Knew.” —J.C.

Alan Palomo, World of Hassle (September 15)

What began as a Neon Indian concept album has turned into the sprawling yet focused first LP that electropop savant Alan Palomo will release under his birth name. Here, he imbues playful sounds lifted from the ’80s with deep-seated neuroses, foraying into jazz and cumbia in a world populated by outré characters. To get a sense of the vibe, check out the singles “Stay-at-Home DJ” and “Nudista Mundial ’89,” the latter of which features Mac DeMarco and has a wild video inspired by the NSFW computer game Leisure Suit Larry. —D.R.

Pretenders, Relentless (September 15)

It’s been 44 years since the Pretenders’ self-titled debut, and Chrissie Hynde just can’t quit rock and roll. The living legend said she titled their new album Relentless because it means “showing no abatement of intensity,” and you can hear that primal drive on the lead single, “Let the Sun Come In.” But, of course, Hynde can be just as forceful on ballads, and the album closer, “I Think About You Daily,” featuring strings arranged by Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood, packs a hell of a punch. —D.R.

Bring Me the Horizon, Post Human: Nex Gen (September 15)

In 2020, the genre-bending metalcore outfit released Post Human: Survival Horror, the first album in a planned quadrilogy wherein each record will explore different themes and musical styles. The second installment is led by “AmEN!,” featuring Lil Uzi Vert and Glassjaw’s Daryl Palumbo, showing you just what kind of sonic ranges BMTH are traversing these days. —D.R.

K.Flay, Mono (September 15)

One of K.Flay’s greatest strengths is her ability to meld the tender with the abrasive; “Raw Raw,” off her fifth LP, is a prime example of that balancing act. Detailing the terrifying uncertainty around her recent hearing loss, she veers from delicate to defiant and back, all over a bass groove reminiscent of the Prodigy’s “Breathe.” The dance-floor-ready “Shy,” meanwhile, might be one of the hottest, fuzziest songs about timidity ever made. —D.R.

Willie Nelson, Bluegrass (September 15)

Somehow it took Willie Nelson until his 90th year to do an album dedicated to bluegrass. The national treasure teamed up with some of the finest players the genre has to offer for this collection of reimagined hits and sleepers from his storied career, including “On the Road Again,” “Good Hearted Woman,” and the lead single, a honey-dripped rendition of 1964’s “You Left Me a Long, Long Time Ago.” —D.R.

Mitski, The Land Is Inhospitable and So Are We (September 15)

From album to album, Mitski’s music moves through styles like seasons. 2016’s Puberty 2 and 2018’s Be the Cowboy refined a bittersweet alt-rock sound that hearkened back to the grunge era, then 2022’s Laurel Hell draped its gloomy thought spirals in New Wave and synth-pop aesthetics. On her seventh full-length, which the singer-songwriter is calling her “most American album,” acoustic instruments, orchestral accompaniments, and choir arrangements envelop elegies to the scorching earth. —Craig Jenkins

Thirty Seconds to Mars: It’s the End of the World But It’s a Beautiful Day (September 15)

During the pandemic, Jared Leto and his bandmate brother, Shannon, decided to make the most of their time in lockdown and wrote somewhere around 200 songs, 11 of which are featured here. The set comes on the heels of the lead single, “Stuck,” with its Leto-directed video and disco-propulsive message about getting into and out of a rut creatively, romantically, or otherwise. —D.R.

Kylie Minogue, Tension (September 22)

It’s already been a banner year for Kylie Minogue: She soundtracked Pride, scored a U.K. top-ten hit in her fifth consecutive decade with “Padam Padam,” and announced a Las Vegas residency, set for November. Now, prepare for more club anthems sung with a bit of a wink — often as ridiculous as they are addictive — to be added to her collection. —J.P.F.

Armand Hammer, We Buy Diabetic Test Strips (September 29)

Two years after the acclaimed Alchemist collaboration, Haram, and just four months since the release of billy woods’s stunning Maps album, Armand Hammer — the duo of woods and longtime collaborator Elucid — returns with We Buy Diabetic Test Strips. Fans of woods’s intricate storytelling and Elucid’s earnest poetry will love the haunting sonics, referential gallows humor, and existential musings the album offers. Guests include Junglepussy, Steel Tipped Dove, Moor Mother, El-P, and JPEGMAFIA. —C.J.

Jorja Smith, Falling or Flying (September 29)

Following her stellar 2018 debut, Lost & Found, Jorja Smith indicated she was exploring sounds beyond modern R&B, soul, and hip-hop with her 2021 EP, Be Right Back. For her sophomore album, she enlisted the anonymous female production duo DAMEDAME* — one of whom is a longtime friend — and steered clear of bringing in big-name collaborators. The result, as heard on the jazzy-clubby single “Little Things,” is of an artist truly finding her voice, on her terms. —D.R.

Wilco, Cousin (September 29)

Let’s look beyond the title and its obvious connections to The Bear and simply celebrate that Wilco have a Cate Le Bon–produced album coming in time for sweater season. The Chicago group began hometown recording sessions for it last year, reworking the material repeatedly until joining forces with the Welsh artist, who provides backing vocals and instrumentation alongside Jeff Tweedy’s son Spencer. —D.R.

Kid Cudi, Insano (September TBD)

Cudi’s at the end of his ten-album deal with Republic Records, and he’s going out with a bang. Insano boasts 21 tracks, including the laid-back party jam “Porsche Topless,” and, allegedly, guest spots from A$AP Rocky, Lil Yachty, and Wiz Khalifa, among others. (Kanye, of course, was not invited.) Cudi has said that he’ll release deluxe editions of Insano in the future and will follow it up with a massive world tour in 2024. —D.R.


Sufjan Stevens, Javelin (October 6)

Sufjan Stevens is marking 25 years in music with a return to traditional singer-songwriting but not at the expense of his ever-evolving palette: His tenth solo album has a guest appearance from National guitarist Bryce Dessner on “Shit Talk,” a cover of Neil Young’s “There’s a World,” plus an accompanying 48-page booklet of art and essays by Stevens. —D.R.

Reba McEntire, Not That Fancy (October 6)

The country legend is reimagining some of her greatest hits for an album to coincide with her new book of the same name (which features stories, pictures, recipes, and tips on living your best, simple life). Dolly Parton drops in for a spin on “Does He Love You,” while Brooks & Dunn guest on “If You See Him, If You See Her.” The album also includes a new McEntire song, “Seven Minutes in Heaven,” dedicated to her late mother. —D.R.

Rick Astley, Are We There Yet? (October 6)

After a successful Glastonbury debut, during which he performed a set of Smiths covers, Astley is still on a roll (sorry) this fall with a new album that’s imbued with the sounds of American soul and a dash of country. It’s the third straight LP that the 57-year-old wrote and recorded by himself at his home studio; lead single “Dippin My Feet” finds him turning up the twang. —D.R.

Holly Humberstone: Paint My Bedroom Black (October 13)

The 23-year-old pop star, who has opened for Rodrigo, knows her way around a lyric: On “The Walls Are Way Too Thin,” she tells the story of being in love with a roommate’s boyfriend with such acuity that it’ll make you go, Oh, I had no idea I needed a song about that. “Room Service,” the standout of her debut album, is a hooky song seemingly about someone struggling through a terminal illness that skirts tweeness with lyrical specificity — Humberstone’s secret weapon. —J.P.F.

L’Rain, I Killed Your Dog (October 13)

There’s a trancelike groove to be found in L’Rain’s best songs — but only for a minute, before the experimentalist either slowly shakes the ground below your feet or pulls the rug out from under you. “New Year’s UnResolution,” the lead single of her new album, I Killed Your Dog, sees Taja Cheek layering in vocals and a slightly off piano until the beat dissipates entirely. —J.C.

Troye Sivan: Something to Give Each Other (October 13)

Troye Sivan broke the gay corner of the internet this summer with his very horny music video for “Rush” (this after already helping to haunt the whole internet with The Idol). His arc has been heading toward unadulterated lust for some time. It appears that on his third album — whose cover features Sivan’s face between the legs of another man — the dam has burst. —J.P.F.

Jamila Woods, Water Made Us (October 13)

After looking outward on her last two albums — to the city and women who made her, on Heavn and Legacy! Legacy! — Jamila Woods is focusing on herself with Water Made Us. Yes, an artist releasing her “most personal album yet” is a worn trope, but Woods flips it on its head with a focus on self-love, beginning with the single “Tiny Garden.” And leave it to Woods, also a literal poet, to name the album after a Toni Morrison quote. —J.C.

Taylor Swift, 1989 (Taylor’s Version) (October 27)

A second North American leg of the Eras Tour isn’t the only surprise Swift has up her bejeweled sleeves for this fall: At a recent show, the pop star announced to thousands of Swifties — and Karlie Kloss — that she has finished a new version of 2014’s 1989 and said later that this is “my most FAVORITE rerecord I’ve ever done” because the five new from-the-vault tracks are “so insane.” Brace yourself for the equally insane clues and puzzles sure to drop closer to the release. —J.C.

Usher (October TBD)

Usher is a wild card, an R&B legend who’s good in any room (unless there’s riffraff in there), who doesn’t need to make a new album every year because the old ones hit all their marks. He could perform classics from My Way, 8701, and Confessions for the rest of his life and continue to melt audiences night by night. Instead, he’s capitalizing on an uptick in interest in his honeyed vocals, thanks to his Vegas residency, with a new album. Early tastes, like the Lil Jon collab “GLU” or “Good Good” with Summer Walker and 21 Savage, put Usher back in touch with his basics — emotional slow jams — while uniting different generations of Atlanta hip-hop and R&B genius. —C.J.


Chris Stapleton, Higher (November 10)

Maybe Higher will finally be the southern-rock record Chris Stapleton seems cut out to make, or maybe his imposing lead single is just a fake-out. Otherwise, it’s another outing from one of the most consistent quantities in country music with little to shake up the formula — except an added producer role for his wife and co-writer, Morgane. —J.C.

Dolly Parton, Rockstar (November 17)

As the rare figure legendary among both drag queens and church folk, Dolly Parton can go wherever she pleases. Still, her 49th solo album is a first: Parton summoned hitmakers from seven decades of music — Miley Cyrus, Lizzo, P!nk, Stapleton, members of the Beatles, Fleetwood Mac, Blondie, Powerman 5000, the Police, Judas Priest, and more — for a spicy batch of rock covers and originals. Rockstar aims to flip the script on the stuffy tradition of classic-rock crooners subjecting fans to mushy country covers as Parton puts her own stamp on timeless tunes like “Purple Rain,” “Free Bird,” and “Let It Be.” —C.J.

Nicki Minaj, Pink Friday 2 (November 17)

Nicki Minaj has been teasing her fifth album over the course of an outrageous few years. She got married, had a son affectionately referred to as Papa Bear, then faced a wave of litigation relating to her husband’s 1994 sexual-assault conviction. She claimed the title of Video Vanguard at MTV’s VMAs and scored her first solo Billboard “Hot 100” chart-topper in “Super Freaky Girl.” She had hits with Lil Baby and Ice Spice and beef with Latto and the Grammys. A year out from “Freaky,” she’s seemingly committed to the project’s release date — and there’s certainly no shortage of pressing matters for the rapper to cover. —C.J.

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