Nick Cave, Miley Cyrus, and 21 more albums we can’t wait to hear in November

Photos of musicians Masego, Nick Cave, and Miley Cyrus against a psychedelic backdrop
From left: Masego (Photo: Marcus Ingram/Getty Images), Nick Cave (Photo: Taylor Hill/Getty Images), and Miley Cyrus (Photo: Erik Voake/Stringer/Getty Images)
Graphic: Natalie Peeples

Events of world-historical importance are happening all around us, seemingly on a weekly basis these days. Another surge of coronavirus is overwhelming health care providers. It’s all a lot to take. So let’s be grateful for music: During times when the world feels like nothing but an anxiety generator, the intimacy of musical expression—whether disappearing into a pair of headphones, or going for a drive and cranking up the speakers—can be a balm. And November brings with it a bevy of great upcoming releases, from scrappy indie rock to glam-tastic pop stars. Here’s The A.V. Club’s look at our most anticipated records of the month, and the artists we’re most excited to hear from.

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Ennio Morricone, Morricone Segreto [November 6]

Ennio Morricone, Morricone Segreto [November 6]

Ennio Morricone composed music for more than 500 films during his long and celebrated career. With a work ethic like that, it’s no surprise that “Il Maestro” left a treasure trove of music behind when he died in July of this year. Morricone Segreto, the first posthumous collection of Morricone music, promises to open up an undiscovered side of his talents, featuring seven previously unheard tracks recorded from the 1960s through the ’80s—decades Decca Records describe as his “richest creative period.” Whatever secrets these songs have in store, they’re bound to be groovy ones, laced with psychedelic melodies and freewheeling sonic experimentation. [Katie Rife]

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GFRIEND, Walpurgis Night [November 9]

GFRIEND, Walpurgis Night [November 9]

Already released single “Apple” was such a welcome maturation of South Korean girl outfit GFRIEND’s sound that Walpurgis Night is already poised to serve as a milestone of an album, five years after the group’s debut. The third of the series that includes previously released EPs Labyrinth and Song Of The Sirens, this 11-track LP will mark the group’s first attempt at unit tracks, allowing some of the members to engage in potentially new soundscapes while highlighting their individual efforts. [Shannon Miller]

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Kylie Minogue, Disco [November 6]

Kylie Minogue, Disco [November 6]

As it gets colder here in the U.S., Kylie Minogue is getting her fellow Aussies ready for summer nights with her 15th studio album, Disco. As the title advertises, the 12-track album (with four additional songs on the bonus edition) is full of disco-pop fun. Whether on the horn-heavy “I Love It,” the slinky “Magic,” or the electropop lead single “Say Something,” Minogue continues her three-decades tradition of borrowing from the best of the past and infusing it with her effortless contemporary cool. [Patrick Gomez]

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Tunng, Tunng Presents…DEAD CLUB [November 6]

Tunng, Tunng Presents…DEAD CLUB [November 6]

Tunng Presents...DEAD CLUB is less a new studio album and more a multimedia extravaganza. The English electronic-folk act’s latest includes a dozen new songs, true, but those tracks are accompanied by an eight-episode podcast of the same name (already available), as well as a giant 42-page zine. It’s all connected—clips of the podcast interviews are laced into the music—with common themes like death, grief, and the related emotions and experiences that accompany dying. Needless to say, it sounds intense as hell. [Alex McLevy]

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AC/DC, Power Up [November 13]

AC/DC, Power Up [November 13]

It didn’t seem likely, to say the least. After the sentencing of drummer Phil Rudd in 2015, the retirement of bassist Cliff Williams in 2016, and the death of rhythm guitarist Malcolm Young in 2017, AC/DC appeared to be done for. But the lineup is back, with relative Stevie Young filling his role, for a new album intended as a tribute to the late musician. What does Power Up sound like? It sounds like AC/DC, obviously. [Alex McLevy]

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Aesop Rock, Spirit World Field Guide [November 13]

Aesop Rock, Spirit World Field Guide [November 13]

Alternative hip-hop pioneer Aesop Rock is returning with his first studio album since 2016’s The Impossible Kid. And it’s an ambitious one: A 21-track concept album about an upside-down reality, with his songs as the guidebook on how to make it through the Spirit World safely—that also doubles as his signature meditations on dealing with anxiety, pain, uncertainty, and all the too-familiar problems of this world. As always, listening to Aesop is a respite from troubled times. [Alex McLevy]

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Jesu, Terminus [November 13]

Jesu, Terminus [November 13]

Justin K. Broadrick has returned to his Jesu moniker for the first proper full-length album in seven years. The musician’s unique stew of heavy shoegaze appears on full display in lead single “When I Was Small,” though there are some hints that his recent collaborations with Sun Kil Moon may have influenced this latest work. No matter if it skews heavier or lighter—probably his signature blend of both—it’ll be, as always, well worth the listen. [Alex McLevy]

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Marika Hackman, Covers [November 13]

Marika Hackman, Covers [November 13]

Compelling art-pop artist Marika Hackman is following up her excellent guitars-and-synths manifesto of queer desire, Any Human Friend, with a (seemingly) much more straightforward project. Converting a variety of songs from other artists (Radiohead, Grimes, Air, and more) into stripped-down and rawer versions of themselves, Covers finds Hackman adopting a back-to-basics approach, keeping arrangements simple and focusing on her unique reworkings of the essential melodies and moods at the heart of these tracks. [Alex McLevy]

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Masego, Studying Abroad EP [November 13]

Masego, Studying Abroad EP [November 13]

Jazz, trap, R&B, and a distinct, confident verve merge gorgeously on any Masego track. Studying Abroad is an upcoming concept EP that takes Masego’s charms on the road, if his recently released island-infused groove “Silver Tongue Devil” with Shenseea is any indication. Since his 2018 debut Lady Lady, the Jamaican American singer-saxophonist has grown into a self-assured virtuoso, and the latest is sure to serve as a brief, impressively well-rounded sojourn from the current monotony. [Shannon Miller]

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Pink Siifu & Fly Anakin, Fly Siifu’s [November 13]

Pink Siifu & Fly Anakin, Fly Siifu’s [November 13]

Pink Siifu continues to stake his claim on being one of the boldest and most imaginative musicians in any genre, let alone the art-damaged hip-hop in which he made his name. Unlike the howling roar of his April release NEGRO, this is more of a piece with 2018’s ensley, experimental jazzy loops and fluttering waves of percussive sheens ebbing and flowing below his verses. The addition of Fly Anakin’s dextrous vocal flow seems to have brought out something great in Pink Siifu, and a variety of producers and skit interludes on this conceptually cohesive project keep it surprising. [Alex McLevy]

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Told Slant, Point The Flashlight And Walk [November 13]

Told Slant, Point The Flashlight And Walk [November 13]

As a title, Point The Flashlight And Walk is every bit as evocative as the songs on Told Slant’s new album, evoking both the ominousness of a moonless night and a giddy sense of discovery. As always, songwriter Felix Walworth’s shivering vocals and spare guitar work carry the LP, but there’s a lushness here that feels fresh—new instruments, offbeat song structures, and explorations of devotion and togetherness that cut deep during a time of forced isolation. [Randall Colburn]

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William Basinski, Lamentations [November 13]

William Basinski, Lamentations [November 13]

William Basinski’s immersive ambient soundscapes are lightning-lit clouds of despair, each as beautiful as they are frightening. His latest is no different. Born from more than 40 years’ worth of “tape loops and studies from Basinski’s archives,” Lamentations is described as chronicling the “inevitable passage of time and the indisputable collapsing of space.” Hear it sing in “O, My Daughter, O, My Sorrow,” an operatic swirl of hiss and vocals that sounds—much like the artist’s famed Disintegration Loops—in the midst of decay. It’s the sound of an ending. [Randall Colburn]

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Yungblud, weird! [November 13]

Yungblud, weird! [November 13]

The brash young musician who goes by the moniker Yungblud returns with his second full-length album, weird!, and the title track suggests this might be his biggest and most effervescent release yet. Full of churning guitars and anthemic pop hearkening back to the glory days of fuzzed-out Brit rock (fused to a very modern synth-pop sensibility), it’s joyously unapologetic music to sing along to, the kind of thing kids can crank up to 11—and intentionally divisive, with his either-you-love-it-or-you-hate-it vocal fry. [Alex McLevy]

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Soft Kill, Dead Kids, R.I.P. City [November 20]

Soft Kill, Dead Kids, R.I.P. City [November 20]

Portland five-piece Soft Kill isn’t exactly reinventing the post-punk wheel, but by following in the footsteps of The Cure and adding its own shoegaze-inflected vibe to the goth-rock proceedings, the group has managed to lock in on a potent blend of eerie melodicism and churning rhythms that make for an immediately appealing listen. This is music that announces itself as recognizably pop-oriented in the songcraft, even as it remains dark and downbeat in the execution. [Alex McLevy]

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Jack Name, Magic Touch [November 20]

Jack Name, Magic Touch [November 20]

The gentle Laurel Canyon grooves of Jack Name’s Magic Touch are just the thing for these overheated times. Ranging from spare, gently guitar-based folk and blues numbers to lush ’70s full-band tracks with sunny harmonies, the entire affair has the feel of a throwback affair, like some long-lost album locked in a vault 45 years ago, save for the lyrical intimacy and sometimes warped worldviews that mark it as a more modern piece of art. [Alex McLevy]

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Kacey Johansing, No Better Time [November 20]

Kacey Johansing, No Better Time [November 20]

Like the soundtrack to some alternate reality where the Summer Of Love never ended, Kacey Johansing’s music creates a gauzy, ethereal vibe, then rides it on through all the singer’s heartfelt lyrics and deftly constructed melodies. Backed by deceptively minimalist arrangements—the better to showcase Johansing’s pure, uncomplicated vocals—it’s a record that should appeal to anyone struggling with the loneliness of our present moment. [Alex McLevy]

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Nick Cave, Idiot Prayer (Nick Cave Alone At Alexandra Palace) [November 20]

Nick Cave, Idiot Prayer (Nick Cave Alone At Alexandra Palace) [November 20]

Nick Cave’s most recent album with the Bad Seeds, 2019’s Ghosteen, is a work of somber but awe-inspiring beauty, the kind of music that can expand to fill even the emptiest of hearts. This year, with the COVID-19 pandemic bringing a new wave of devastation to the world, Cave set out to fill a physical space: London’s cavernous Alexandra Palace, where he played an extremely socially distanced solo concert back in July. Now, that performance is being released as a live album, featuring stripped-down versions of songs from throughout Cave’s long career—including a brand-new one, “Euthanasia.” [Katie Rife]

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Tank & The Bangas, Friend Goals EP [November 20]

Tank & The Bangas, Friend Goals EP [November 20]

New Orleans gem Tank & The Bangas consistently deliver buttery grooves underneath some of the sharpest lyricism in the industry. The Grammy-nominated group is back and embracing quarantine better than most after releasing “Self Care,” a flute-laced jam for true (and honorary by way of a pandemic) introverts. The track also stood out for its many guests, including a feature from longtime backup vocalist (and fan favorite) Anjelika “Jelly” Joseph. Perhaps Friend Goals will be a brief, but apt display of why Tank collaborations are so essential. [Shannon Miller]

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Tayla Parx, Coping Mechanisms [November 20]

Tayla Parx, Coping Mechanisms [November 20]

Considering the singer-songwriter’s impressive roster of previous clientele—Ariana Grande, BTS, and Panic! At The Disco, just to start—Tayla Parx should be among the lauded pop staples. Her second album, Coping Mechanisms, just might catapult her to the forefront of mainstream consciousness thanks to a bevy of tightly mixed dance jaunts (and at least one haunting ode to perpetual lovesickness). After helping others establish their widely revered sound, a spotlight eagerly awaits Parx and her pop prowess. [Shannon Miller]

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Amy Winehouse, 12x7:The Singles Collection [November 20] 

Amy Winehouse, 12x7:The Singles Collection [November 20] 

Yes, there are plenty of glossy box sets intended to cash in on holiday gift giving, but this Amy Winehouse collection actually compiles what would otherwise be a pain in the ass (and expensive) to assemble by yourself. A series of the late crooner’s timeless singles—from “Pumps” to “Rehab” to her “Body And Soul” duet with Tony Bennett—have been compiled into 12x7: The Singles Collection, a dozen 7-inch records packaged in unique picture sleeves along with an exclusive lyric booklet and art. Sounds like an ideal gift for both the Winehouse completists and the uninitiated in your life. [Cameron Scheetz]

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Juicy J, The Hustle Continues [November 27]

Juicy J, The Hustle Continues [November 27]

Juicy J’s new album sounds like it has the potential to be an absolute ruckus. The guest list is a dream team of collaborators, from Megan Thee Stallion and Logic to old friends like Ty Dolla $ign and 2 Chainz, and early single “Gah Damn High” (featuring Wiz Khalifa) is precisely the kind of rough and funny production at which the longtime rapper excels. If he can just temper his penchant for lazy, outdated misogyny, there’s no reason the artist’s third decade won’t keep him as culturally omnipresent as ever. [Alex McLevy]

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Smashing Pumpkins, Cyr [November 27]

Smashing Pumpkins, Cyr [November 27]

Smashing Pumpkins are back with new double-album: Joining in again are guitarist James Iha (since 2018) and drummer Jimmy Chamberlin (since 2015), along with head Pumpkin William Patrick Corgan and guitarist Jeff Schroeder. With three guitars now in the lineup, you have to wonder why Cyr lays so heavy on the synths. Disco cuts like the title track sound glossy and slick, but lack the teeth that an Iha solo or more pronounced percussion from Chamberlin would bring. But Corgan’s flurry of creative output continues undeterred, as there’s also a five-part animated series called In Ashes (at this writing, up to episode three) featuring videos of Cyr songs in some sort of futuristic deathscape adventure. [Gwen Ihnat]

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Miley Cyrus, Plastic Hearts [November 27] 

Miley Cyrus, Plastic Hearts [November 27] 

We’ve known many different Mileys over the years, but this era of Cyrus—the one she found “in the ashes” of her home lost to California wildfires—feels like the artist achieving her full potential. Both her sleek single “Midnight Sky” and her recent bout of rousing covers crackle with an electric energy, putting an emphasis on the raw power of her vocals. It appears Miley Cyrus finally understands the kind of pop/rock star she wants to be, and Plastic Hearts is all the more exciting for it. [Cameron Scheetz]

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