I don’t mean to start any blasphemous rumors… but I think there are some big surprises coming this fall. A handful of my favorite acts are making mysterious teases on social media and elsewhere that have generated a frenzy among fans. Calm down, Devotees.
Some of these messages come with specific dates attached, so we know for certain something is happening. Others remain more obscure. I can’t promise we’ll hear new music from all of these artists, but the planets do seem aligned.
Rumors have swirled for weeks about an October announcement from the biggest synthpop band in the world. Famed British DJ Richard Blade tried swatting down those rumors, but it turns out he was wrong—DM officially confirmed that something is happening on October 4. No one knows if they’re announcing a new song, a new album, or a farewell tour. In any case, there’s a massive clamor surrounding Depeche Mode in the wake of founding member Andy Fletcher’s untimely death this summer.
The enigmatic Karin Dreijer remains as mysterious as ever. On September 12, Fever Ray wiped their social media and began teasing… a cinnamon roll. It’s part of a new project they’re calling “Office Party” that is probably a new album cycle. The teasers have continued, and so far the quirky visuals feel more in line with last album Plunge than with the fog-shrouded mystics of Fever Ray’s debut. We’ll find out what the cinnamon roll means on October 5.
I have just returned from Cold Waves X in Chicago where the almighty Light Asylum performed a brief but blistering set before yielding the stage to three legends: Portion Control, Nitzer Ebb, and Front 242. Light Asylum played a handful of hits, including club anthem “Dark Allies,” as well as two brand new songs that sounded ready for release. I have no idea if they’re coming this fall, but Shannon Funchess promised, “New music soon. I swear to god.”
In October of 2019, UK duo Promenade Cinema dropped one of the best songs I’ve ever heard: “The Arch House.” Fast-forward three years, we may be in for a repeat. The band recently teased on Facebook that new tracks are mixed and they’ll be making an announcement in October. If you haven’t caught on to Promenade Cinema yet, now is the time. They’re one of the world’s best modern synthpop acts thanks to a pair of cinematic albums, Exit Guides and Living Ghosts.
We already know that VNV Nation’s 11th studio album, Electric Sun, will be out in February 2023. In the grand tradition of pre-release bangers like “Retaliate,” “Control,” and “When is the Future?” we’re expecting to hear a new song before the album release. VNV was supposed to play it during their July show in Gelsenkirchen, but technical issues prevented its premier. I reached out to mastermind Ronan Harris, and all he’ll tell me is that it’s named for one of his favorite poems. Here’s hoping we find out this fall.