5. TEGAN AND SARA
TBA (WARNER BROS.)
On the as-yet-untitled follow-up to 2007's The Con, members of their touring band join Tegan and Sara Quin, and Con producer Chris Walla (Death Cab For Cutie) for an album Sara begrudgingly describes as "upbeat. I hate saying that, but we just get together in the studio and Tegan and I just dance awkwardly!" Fans can expect plenty of surprises, including a track called "Alligator," which Sara based around a piano hook in a bid for urban pop hit-making. "When it came to fleshing the arrangement out, nobody reached for a guitar," she recalls. "Six hours in and there were four people jamming on keyboards. I was like, 'Oh, my God, are we Kraftwerk?'" But like many of the Quins' adventures, there's always a great back story involved. "Tegan and I did a writing session in New Orleans a couple months ago," Sara begins, "We wrote seven songs together and all we had was an electric guitar, a weird acoustic guitar, a microphone and a drum kit. And we were like, 'We're gonna make a really stripped-down Replacements record, just harsh, reverb-y guitars and focus on melodies and lyrics. Watching everybody playing keyboards on 'Alligator' made me think, 'You know, we've really gone off the path here...'"