5. Lil Wayne
News Jun 22 2011
Tha Carter IV (August 29)
(Young Money/Cash Money/Universal Motown)
Like a lot of you out there, we couldn't be more excited about Weezy's long-awaited Tha Carter IV. Of course, this is assuming that the record doesn't get delayed again, which, given the rapper's track record, is a distinct possibly. Really, at this point, we'll take anything -- just not another Rebirth.
4. St. Vincent
Strange Mercy (September 13)
Annie Clark knows how to shred the shit out of a guitar, and we're bound to hear more of her face-melting chops when she drops her latest LP as St. Vincent. Her last album, Actor, blended speaker-fried noise with orchestral flourishes inspired by Disney films, so the possibilities here are endless.
3. Handsome Furs
Sound Kapital (June 28)
Wolf Parade are on an indefinite (and possibly permanent) hiatus, but there's no need to mourn their loss. Singer-guitarist Dan Boeckner has now turned his full attention to Handsome Furs, his collaboration with wife Alexei Perry. Their third album together ties together buzzy synths and club-ready beats with Boeckner's fist-pumping, Springsteen-indebted rock anthems. It also may be the first Handsome Furs that doesn't sound like side-project.
2. Little Dragon
Ritual Union (July 26)
This Swedish electro outfit won over a ton of new fans when they toured with Gorillaz last year, so look for them to make a mighty big splash when they drop their third LP, Ritual Union. They previously hinted that this album could be a little rougher around their edges than their poppy past offerings, but that hasn't stopped more than a few editors around the Exclaim! office from getting all fanboy over this one.
1. The Weeknd
The details are still up in the air, but that isn't stopping the music world from waiting with bated breath for the Toronto R&B sensation's latest mixtape. This Drake-approved crooner won the ears of indiedom with his recent House of Balloons mixtape, so expect everyone to lose their shit when this drops.
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