By the time you read this, 2023 will be a few weeks away. Winter has come. A bafflingly ordinary time between the most socially demanding holiday of the year and warmer weather.
Some might call it the saddest time of the year, and those people might not be wrong. The new year has arrived. Optimism runs rampant, until you try to hit the gym for the third time in a week, and all those resolutions suddenly feel less firm.
It also means we just finished the year. In this case, that year is 2022. For the longest time at FNP, I submit my list of my favorite music of the year as the years go by. There is a local listing and two national listings. Everything is fun. Writing also takes about 6,000 hours. So when it takes hours to figure out what I want to put in the list, figure out the order of the choices and then write things down, I’m going to have to start thinking, writing, and everything in between as far away as 12 Before the 31st of January.
what does this mean? Well, that means the typical year-end best list, I’ve always thought, is flawed. They don’t actually include the previous year. Instead, they cover a period of about 10 or 11 months. Considering the time it takes to mess everything up, you don’t think about it for nearly a quarter of the year.
So, with that in mind, I proudly present to you my top albums of 2022, in no particular order:
Chvrches – “Screen Violence”
Wet Legs – “Wet Legs”
Wait a moment. You expect more, right?
You see, if nothing else (honestly, nothing else), 2022 tells me that the music you like shouldn’t be the limit of music. For some of us, we’re always on the lookout for that great new band, that infectious new record, that new favorite artist. But sometimes this is not the case. In fact, sometimes, we’re late to the party—we pick what we like long after we think it’s successful or cool. Instead, sometimes, we come early — when no one else gets involved with our work, and when they do, we’re done. If time can be a narrator, it is sometimes unreliable.
That’s why I’ve decided to take this approach for my 2022 music career. Regardless, the Wet Leg album made a lot of 2022 year-end lists, so I’m not too over the top on that front. Plus, well, it’s great. But that Chvrches album? Well, that’s coming out in August 2021. The Scottish trio (live quartet) toured the country three (three times!) before I found this album (by then, I had missed any opportunity to see these songs live ).
But if you look at my iPod, my YouTube searches, or my prayers (they’ll come back to the US again this album cycle), you’ll find these songs dominating my music for pretty much all of 2022 Life. Of course, I tried new artists, and yes, I love recent records, but nothing held my attention quite like that set of songs—and, three weeks into 2023, still does. This is the humble story of Lauren Mayberry. It’s sweet tooth electro-pop. It’s the space between the two. It’s a million and one things. This is an album that I discovered too late and haven’t forgotten.
Here’s the thing: this is the first time I agree with this. I could have crammed in another 5-10 records to check in the last quarter of 2022, but what’s the point? Most year-end charts fall victim to recency bias anyway (unless it’s something really special and has four or five absolute chart singles released in a super-strategic manner over the next 10 months , how often do you see albums coming out in February? Year-end list?). Most of the time, it’s hard to find true love if you’re constantly looking for the next pretty person to smile at you. So, hell, why not fall?
In fact, it fell really hard. Surrender yourself to it. If there’s one album you can’t get enough of in 2022, I suggest you name it Album of the Year. Forget pitchforks. Forget the Grammys. Forget about the Rolling Stones. Forget Spotify’s streaming lists. Think about what moves you most, what song you need to listen to to calm down, feel less alone, sing happily, or fall asleep. They could be from 2022 or 1972; it doesn’t matter because it’s the art that affects your year – regardless of the copyright date on the Wikipedia page.
When it’s time to move on, you’ll know it’s time to move on. These songs may be replaced by others, but the memories of those you loved will stay with you forever. A simple lyric or chord sequence reminds you of the passion you once felt, and it reminds you of what it’s like to fall in love all over again. So maybe you hit play, maybe you go on another date, maybe you remind yourself that real connections don’t come often in music.
So embrace it when it arises – and embrace it by taking the time to truly appreciate eternity.
Colin McGuire has been in and out of the band for over 20 years and also helps with concerts in and around Frederick. His work has appeared in Alternative Press Magazine, PopMatters, and 72 Hours, among others.He’s sure there’s a difference between being in a band and being in a romantic band The relationship is less than the minimum value. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.