To our extreme delight, there are quite a few artists that are dropping new music this year for the first time in a long time. We've been waiting seemingly forever for No Doubt's next album. Thankfully a few other artists didn't leave us hanging for as long.
We've selected five albums you definitely need to know about before their release. We're pretty sure they'll be ridiculously fantastic, too.
Check out our picks for great upcoming summer albums after the jump...The Idler Wheel is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Chords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do, Fiona Apple, due out June 19
Fiona Apple has kept us on the hook for a new album for seven years. The people have spoken, and they say she has delivered a great package. The goddess who never smiles debuted some of her new songs at this year's SXSW Festival (also known as the annual Texas music industry circle jerk), and everyone ate it up. Stream the album courtesy of NPR.The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends, The Flaming Lips, due out June 26
The Record Store Day 2012 best-selling release is being reissued/more widely released for further enjoyment due to popular demand. Wayne Coyne and "fwends" collaborated with Ke$ha, Biz Markie, Bon Iver, Neon Indian, Yoko Ono, Jim James, Nick Cave, and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, among many others, so there's definitely a great mix of styles on the album.Gossamer, Passion Pit, due out July 24
The band's single "Sleepyhead" off their 2008 EP Chunk of Change was what initially hooked in new listeners, and they reeled in tons of fans with their hit 2010 album Manners. Lately their live performances have consisted of DJ sets that have made us eager for new material. Frontman Michael Angelakos is still capable of hitting really ridiculously high notes, and with gems like "Take a Walk," we're expecting greatness on Gossamer. In other news, the band is coming to the Marquee Theatre on September 11 in support of the album.Algiers, Calexico, due out September 11
Ah, Tucson's finest, Calexico. We adore their tasteful Southwestern Latin-style desert rock. Plus, we're down with their political views; they performed at the Artists For Action Voter Registration concert and rally in Tempe back in 2010. We're diggin' their beautiful song "Para," our first taste of Algiers, so we're looking forward to hearing even more off the new album before September.Push and Shove, No Doubt, due out September 25
Much like Fiona Apple, No Doubt have kept us waiting long enough. The band has been hard at work in the studio for a while now, and they're finally ready to share their work. The first single from the album, "Settle Down," for which the band has been working on shooting the music video, will be out in mid-July. As an aside, I'm just gonna put this out there way in advance: I'm predicting a headlining spot for Gwen and the gang at Coachella in 2013 since it didn't happen this year.