2022 — a year filled with scandals, violence, and tragedies; contrarily, it was also a great year for the music industry and its fans. Numerous albums have been released this year, many of which have won awards and exceeded all expectations. With so many updates and announcements on social media, it is difficult to keep up with all the new releases. For this reason, I have decided to compose an orderly list of my favorite albums released during each month of 2022. While my list is solely based on my musical preferences, I hope it brings you new recommendations and encourages you to explore different genres.
January: Dawn FM by The Weeknd
Release Date: January 7, 2022
Dawn FM is an upbeat, 80’s synth-pop musical fest from start to finish. I truly believe this album completely deviates from anything The Weeknd has created in the past. Abel took a risk experimenting with retro sounds and compositions, yet he perfectly executed the plan. The songs within the album are full of life, excellently produced, and drenched in synths and nostalgic beats. Thanks to The Weeknd, the music industry started the year of 2022 on a positive, groovy note.
February: Once Twice Melody by Beach House
Release Date: February 18, 2022
Beach House’s eighth album, Once Twice Melody, is yet another example of how their production and composing skills have evolved throughout their musical journey. The album is filled with stunning, soothing melodies that lift you off your feet. While the music style is very similar to those of their past work, the classic, whimsical sounds of Beach House never fail to impress me.
March: Melt My Eyez See Your Future by Denzel Curry
Release Date: March 25, 2022
Denzel Curry has shown improvement and versatility in every project he has released thus far, and his most recent album is no exception. Melt My Eyez See Your Future is an incredibly intimate and honest project encapsulating how Curry views the world from his perspective: a hushed, remorseful space. While it was a simple rap album, Melt My Eyez See Your Future shows just how powerful and authentic Denzel Curry can be.
April: Ivory by Omar Apollo
Release Date: April 8, 2022
Alternating between various genres such as indie, R&B, and hip hop, Ivory is a culmination of singer Omar Apollo’s musical and personal growth as an artist. Apollo is blessed with a mature, haunting voice that he used in this album like never before. He even switches between singing in English and Spanish, further adding to the album’s unique qualities. Ivory is special and personal to Apollo as he eludes labels regarding his identity or sexuality; instead, he lets the music speak for itself.
May: Mr. Morale and The Big Steppers by Kendrick Lamar
Release Date: May 13, 2022
Kendrick Lamar’s fifth studio album paints an encapsulating portrait of how childhood circumstances, relationships, and therapy have morphed the artist into who he is today. As he touched upon many personal subjects, Lamar defied many expectations in today’s hip hop culture. The album also features its fair share of beautiful instrumentals and rhythms. Overall, Mr. Morale and The Big Steppers is a fantastic, groundbreaking album.
June: Life is Yours by Foals
Release Date: June 17, 2022
In Life is Yours, Foals experiments with various instruments and the alternative-rock genre. Singer Yannis Philippakis sings earnestly and passionately about positivity, nostalgia, dancing, and more throughout the album. The band masterfully incorporates guitar, intertwined melodies, chords, and riffs to tie together all the songs of this upbeat, captivating album.
July: Beatopia by Beadoobee
Release Date: July 15, 2022
Undoubtedly, Beatopia was one of my most anticipated and streamed albums of the year. Inspired by her childhood dreams and 2000s rock-pop culture, Beabadoobee’s second album allowed her to expand her sound and explore her true feelings. Every track creates a magical atmosphere that feels like I’m receiving a hug. The lyrics move between self-aware humor and hopeless love, and its instrumentals are just enchanting. Beatopia definitely contains some of Bea’s best work.
August: The Forever Story by JID
Release Date: August 26, 2022
The Forever Story is a flawless hip-hop album. JID’s flows and bars are flourishing and catchier than ever. There are so many fantastic tracks from this album, each of which gets me excited beyond comprehension. This is truly an amazing project, and JID’s determined efforts do not go unnoticed.
September: Four Songs EP by Blood Orange
Release Date: September 16, 2022
Four Songs is a stripped-down, unexpected comeback from singer Dev Hynes, also known as Blood Orange. Although only composed of four songs, the EP reminds his fans that Hynes is still the master of guitar and tone. In Four Songs, Hynes establishes a soothing, relaxing tone that allows his listeners to sit back and lose themselves in the beat.
October: Being Funny in a Foreign Language by The 1975
Release Date: October 14, 2022
If you knew me, you’d know that I would sell my soul for The 1975. I have been their loyal fan since their sophomore album, always waiting eagerly for their next work. With Being Funny in a Foreign Language, they certainly did not disappoint. The album is filled with jazzy, haunting instrumentals that take you on a mystical journey. Being Funny in a Foreign Language is certainly not my favorite album by the band, but it is a masterpiece nevertheless. I will be belting along to “Happiness” and “I’m In Love With You” until the day I drop dead.
November: And in The Darkness, Hearts Aglow by Weyes Blood
Release Date: November 18, 2022
This album is a rare thing of wonder. Weyes Blood magnificently composed a variety of songs that reaches out to cast your loneliness away. Many times whilst listening, her enchanting vocals made me feel as if I was levitating in the air. Overall, this album is lush, stunning, and sentimental; it is most definitely worth listening to.
December: To Be Determined!
While I can not decide about the best album of December yet, I still hold high hopes for the future of the music industry. I can already assume that the best album will be SZA’s long-awaited third album, S.O.S. Until then, I encourage you all to explore recent releases and acknowledge the evolution of music in today’s era.