Is your New Year’s resolution to be more of bandwagon-hopping trend junkie? Good. Let noted seer Cormac Duffy give you a head start
Despite the accepted logic, lists of predictions for the year ahead in music are not infallible oracles of wisdom. Rather they are dispatches from that murky netherworld where divination is a middle class sport: arts journalism. But if you truly insist on some guarantees on what you’ll hear this year, there are a few safe bets.
2011 saw chart music engulf the tropes of dubstep for its own gain, so expect more of the same subcultural exploitation this year. Word has it that Miley Cyrus’ weed habit has left her working on what she has called “a totally rad chillwave album”. Kedollarsignha will realise that to fully articulate the moral bankruptcy of her life, it’ll take an album of Throbbing Gristle covers. On a related note and scant high-point, Scott Walker will unveil another album so bleak that the only release format will be a Freddy Krueger-style concert appearance in your nightmares.
Needless to say, what’s heard is what’s talked about, and what’s talked about is what’s controversial. I’d advise keeping an eye out for rising rapper A.C.R.O.N.Y.M’s debut mixtape Excessively Casual Reference to Violence, as well as UK pop sensation to-be Katie J’s single ‘Lezploitational Undertones’.
As another surge of vapid, uninspired peons attempt to make music out of leftover bits of the past, a 1940s revival is the logical next step. It’ll be perfect timed for the breakup of the EU, the return of war to the continent, and the UK government brainwashing Adele to become a Vera Lynn-esque Jingoist songbird to score their vicious fight against common markets. What’s not to like?
No one seems to have noticed that the proposed Mayan doomsday falls very close to the annual release of The X Factor winner’s single. It seems clear to me that a putrid, key-changing, power-ballad cover of ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’ will cause the gods to lose all faith in the virus with shoes we call mankind, and finally unleash that plague of locusts they’ve been prototyping since the inaugural Eurovision.
Now for the real predictions; a ragtag gang of white guys wishing they were The Strokes will become inexplicably popular, the year’s best-selling album will be the one easiest to give to your mum as a Christmas present, a man in sandals will vehemently promote a recently made-up genre ( “Wait until you hear post-crunk, it’s the best thing since noise-hop!”), Dr. Dre will release Detox (maybe), Lady Gaga will wear a thing made from other things, and everyone on the BBC Sound of 2012 list will release a “promising”, soon to be forgotten debut. Watch out world, it’s going to be some year.