[photogallerylink id=111587 align=left]Before we get to it, I think we owe 2011 a big thank you for another solid year in music.

Artists like The Black Keys, Florence + the Machine, and Cage the Elephant proved they have staying power. Newbies like Foster the People and Tune-Yards refreshed our palates. And let’s not forget reunions from Jane’s Addiction and Ben Folds Five who rewarded our patience.

As we turn the page and set our eyes on 2012, some of the biggest names in rock music from generations now and then are slated to release new albums. No one likes a tease, but I can’t help myself with names like The Killers, Bruce Springsteen, and Green Day making this year’s list.  Oh, and by the way, none of them claimed our number one spot.

10. Bruce Springsteen
An announcement only days old, Springsteen’s fan sites have been speculating about this one for weeks. The Boss is notorious for keeping his writing and recording agenda very tight-lipped, but made it official this fall, announcing not only a tour to begin next summer, but that a Springsteen release is almost ready, and will drop in the new year. The only question remaining is, what does Bruce plan to do to fill those big shiny leather shows left behind by the great Clarence Clemons (Clemons passed away in June of 2011)? E-street guitarist Nils Lofrgen has said he “Hasn’t a clue,” nor does anyone else in the band, apparently. Yet.

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9. U2
Legendary rock band U2 will release their thirteenth album in 2012 and first since 2009-s No Line on the Horizon. We’re all quite familiar with U2-s musical recipe, but since the news broke that Danger Mouse will handle production, the possibility of encountering a completely different side of the Irish rockers makes this effort all the more intriguing. For those of you who think Danger Mouse is cartoon character, he’s actually a full-fledged musician/producer who’s worked with Gorillaz, Beck, Jay-Z, and The Black Keys.

View The Next Major Album Expected For 2012

8: Phoenix
French electro-pop band Phoenix will return with their fifth studio album in 2012, hoping to build upon their 2009 breakthrough Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix. An album in which both “1901″ and “Lisztomania” ran prevalent throughout commercials and the airwaves. However, don’t expect their new work to consist of all things pop music. The band has admitted a more “experimental” approach will take precedence in the new album, leaving them some breathing room and allowing the band to go where they’ve never gone before.

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7. Soundgarden
One of the touchstone bands for 90-s rock music have settled all qualms and will return with new music in 2012. We’ve witnessed all four members disperse into separate projects during Soundgarden’s 13-year split, but not even Chris Cornell’s solo ventures or his run with Audioslave could match his original band’s acclaim. By all accounts Soundgarden is putting the finishing touches on a dozen new tracks, which are set for a spring 2012

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6. The Killers
The debonair rockers from Vegas have put all rumors to bed by announcing their fourth album, tentatively titled Battle Born, will be released this summer. So there’s really no need to break down into hysterics kids, you will be basking in The Killer’s epic domain before long.

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5. ZZ Top
ZZ’s new Rick Rubin-produced material has been baking most of 2011, and looks to finally be golden brown around the edges and ready to come out in 2012. Despite delays, they did manage to burn a CD of their newest single, “Flyin’ High,” and send it up with Astronaut Michael Fossum aboard the Russian Soyuz Spacecraft TMA-02M. The track now sits in the International Space Station. Pretty cool sign that you’ve arrived as a rock star … when your music makes it into space.

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4. Queens of the Stone Age
Swaggering desert rockers Queens of the Stone Age are approaching the finish line with their follow-up to the highly satisfying Era Vulgaris.

One must wonder what multitasking lead vocalist Josh Homme has up his sleeve this time around, but all signs point to some of the best batch of rock music out there. Between fronting QOTSA, drumming for Eagles of Death Metal, and manning lead vocals in rock triumvirate Them Crooked Vultures, everything Homme touches is bona fide rock splendor.

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3. Green Day
Green Day has never been considered an average run-of-the-mill band, and their recent expansion into Broadway and film certainly showcases their exceptional abilities. As Green Day closes in on their 25th anniversary of punk rock greatness, an impressive ninth studio album will be unleashed and rocking skulls in 2012.

Who could have guessed a band which titles its first major label debut after fecal matter would become so successful?

Word has spread one track entitled “Amy” will be dedicated to the late Amy Winehouse.

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2. Muse
Muse is well-known for blowing our minds with a grandiose brand of rock music, swooning fans with their aural assault that intertwines operatic soundscapes with outer space. However, signs suggest Muse is traveling towards previously uninhabited musical terrain. Bassist Chris Wolstenholme cited Muse’s sixth album will take a “radical” departure from their earlier work. As long as they continue to provide a continuity of eargasms I’m all for it.

View The Next Major Album Expected For 2012

1. Mumford and Sons
Banjo abusing folk rockers Mumford & Sons return in 2012 with their much-anticipated follow-up to Sight No More. Harmonies will soar and hearts will melt as one of Britain’s finest quartets look for back-to-back magnificence.

Fun fact: Lead singer Marcus Mumford was actually born in Anaheim, California before his parents moved back to England.

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Comments (9)
  1. the1stmikec says:

    What about home town favorite Andrew Bird’s first studio album in 3 years???

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