One of pop’s hardest working stars, Charli XCX never seems to get a break. Even when she’s not making an album, she often keeps busy in the studio writing for singles, for other artists, and just for fun.
It’s unbelievable that she’s blessed us with full albums two years in a row (‘Charli’ in 2019, and last year’s quarantine record ‘how i’m feeling now’), and here we are already getting excited about another one, but she keeps us on our toes.
So with new single ‘Good Ones’ confirmed for September, what else do we know about Charli’s upcoming fifth album?
When will Charli XCX’s new album be released?
Recently, Charli posted a picture of a gravestone, dated with her birthday, 2nd August 1992, and 18th March 2022, which many fans are taking to be the release date of her upcoming record.
It’ll be the final release on her five-album contract with Warner, hence the death theme she’s running with here. But also perhaps the death of her old sound, in the way that ‘Reputation’ era Taylor Swift mourned the end of her old self.
The album was said to be in the works before the pandemic hit, and the process resumed after she released ‘how i’m feeling now’.
What is Charli XCX’s new album called?
There’s no title released yet, XCX5 is commonly used amongst fans.
What will it sound like?
Charli has mentioned she’s going for an “ultimate pop music” approach to this record, the complete opposite to the sound we’d heard on ‘how i’m feeling now’.
In a tweet, she alluded to dropping the hyperpop sound she’d favoured on her 2019 self-titled album and 2017’s ‘Pop 2’ mixtape. Previously working closely with the late SOPHIE and PC Music’s hyperpop pioneers A.G. Cook, Danny L Harle and Hannah Diamond, this upcoming album looks set to be a departure from the sound she’d pretty much made her signature.
We’ve now heard lead single ‘Good Ones’, and its instantly iconic video.
As for the rest of the album? She’s been dropping hints about releasing a big sister to her debut album ‘True Romance’ for many years, but this time it might be for real.
In an interview with Boiler Room, she said the upcoming project was inspired by Janet Jackson (perhaps an indicator of the 80s aesthetics), and she’s hoping for a big pop moment like ‘WAP’ this era.
Her comments about making “ultimate pop music” might suggest she’s taking this album in a more mainstream direction – her recent collaboration with hitmakers Joel Corry and Jax Jones could be a hint at that.
Who will feature on Charli XCX’s new album?
Queen of the collaboration, there’s gotta be some features on XCX5, right? Well, it could go either way. ‘Charli’ took the lead of her 2017 feature-heavy mixtapes with its 13 (thirteen!) collab tracks, whereas her other studio albums only have one or two guest spots.
A Reddit user on r/popheads noted Charli wants to collaborate with Ava Max and Grimes on this record, merging her big pop and experimental worlds, where another user suggested she’d been working with Olly Alexander during the recording of ‘Charli’.
Charli also recently started hosting podcast, ‘Best Song Ever’, featuring a multitude of guests including Mark Ronson, Christine and the Queens, and TikTok star Addison Rae. Knowing the way Charli works, it wouldn’t be surprising if any of them popped up on her next record – a quick chat can soon turn into a studio session for this pop genius.
Have we heard any tracks from it?
Other than a snippet of ‘Good Ones’, due 2nd September, we’ve not officially heard any tracks.
However, Charli’s angel fanbase are notorious for leaking her material — if we can make it to next March without hearing the whole thing, it’ll be a miracle.