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The Year of Alternative Music (Otherwise Known As 2019)

While 2018 had its moments, there were few notable events in the alternative scene. However, just two months into the new year, 2019 is already looking extremely promising for the genre. From music videos to albums to tours, alt-pop and alt-rock artists are setting up 2019 to be the year of music.

Alternative icon Panic! At The Disco opened the new year with the second leg of their North American tour, hitting the road on January 10 and wrapping up on February 20. As soon as that tour ended, another began, with the European leg kicking off on March 3rd and continuing through April. As if that wasn’t enough time away from home for the band, Panic! already has festival performances abroad scheduled for summer and early fall of 2019 as well. In a similar fashion, Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness also began 2019 with a US tour that wraps up in late March. The Struts have also announced multiple headlining tours this year for their latest album, YOUNG&DANGEROUS. Throughout February and March, the band is tackling Europe before traveling the southeastern United States for the majority of May. Additionally, earlier this week they announced another US tour, this time going cross country for the entirety of summer 2019. Still not satisfied? You can also catch Nothing More on their Truth Tour.

While some bands are touring for albums released in 2018, others are doing it all by releasing new music and going on tour. One example of this incredible feat is Andy Black. His single previous album, The Shadow Side, was released in 2016, and has had fans begging for more ever since. Luckily, Black released his new single “Westwood Road” in February along with its music video and announced his upcoming album The Ghost of Ohio, which is due for release on April 12. Additionally, he announced a spring North American tour spanning April and May. In a similar fashion, MARINA, formerly known as Marina and the Diamonds, released two singles accompanied by music videos, announced the name and release date of her new album, and opened ticket sales for not one but two 2019 tours in both North America and the UK. Love and Fear, two collections of songs being released jointly as one album, is set to hit shelves on April 26. You can listen to and watch the music videos for “Handmade Heaven” and “Superstar” now in preparation for the album drop.

Weezer, long-time members of the alt community, have also been busy in 2019. In late January, they released The Teal Album, comprised entirely of covers. One album just wasn’t enough for them though, and they dropped The Black Album  on March 1. Finishing up the long list of artists on the rise in 2019 is AJR, who are making their return after the success of their first album The Click. Set to release sometime in 2019, the first single off of their new album is available to listen to now, titled “100 Bad Days.”

While not everyone has entire albums coming out this year or huge tours planned, there are also a fair amount of artists who are dropping singles, releasing EPs, and making festival appearances this year. Simple Creatures just released their second single “Strange Love” off of their recently announced EP of the same name that will be available March 29. They have also confirmed that they will be playing at shows such as Download Festival. After their massive music release in the fall of 2018, DREAMERS have returned with another new single entitled “Die Happy” and another visualizer to go along with it. Lana Del Rey has also confirmed that her new album will be called Norman F*cking Rockwell and will be released some time in 2019, although the specific date has not been set. To tide fans over until its release, she dropped “hope is a dangerous thing for a woman like me to have - but i have it” in early January. Although they haven’t talked about any new music after their EP dropped in late 2018, I Don’t Know How But They Found Me has already played a few pop up shows this year and have more performances scheduled for later in the year including the Rock am Ring and Rock im Park festivals in Germany. Finally, Walk The Moon has also returned to the scene following their last album What If Nothing and their recent winter tour with the release of the single “Timebomb.”

As the year progresses, who knows what more the alternative industry will throw at us. Whatever is coming, there is reason to be excited for it based on the last two months. New music, live performances, and more await in the coming year and are all examples of the strength of the alt-rock pop-punk scene.


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Rachel Paradis

Mt Holyoke '22

I am a senior at Mount Holyoke majoring in mathematics and minoring in psychology. I enjoy listening to music and crocheting, as well as Halloween and antique/thrift shops.
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