I can’t wait to make our memories rhyme: The best albums of 2022, first edition

From the chewy, cerebral dance tracks by Charlotte Adigéry and collaborator Bolis Pupul to aspiring nonagenarian Willie Nelson co-writing ten of the sharpest songs about keeping your wits while your neighbors lose theirs, 2022 offered pleasures which have restored a shimmer to what I thought would be a restorative year. A line from Ella Mai’s “How,” found on her fine second album Heart on My Sleeve, sums it up: “I got too attached, now I’m workin’ on my health.” Meanwhile Nelson’s advice went unheeded by yours truly, for I attended two funerals in the last week. Bound by no restrictions except an audience’s peripatetic attention span, Miranda Lambert confirmed she remains our best popular entertainer. Big Thief, whom I devoted more listening time in 2019 than any contemporary artist to understand their appeal, released a ramshackle album with flute solos, bad knish rhymes, and Adrianne Lenker’s loosy-goosiest vocals. This season Perfume Genius, to whom I haven’t been generous, earns the concentration if not yet the plaudits (I doubt it anyway). Hell, even Harry Styles, a pop act on whom colleagues have expended more keyboard strokes since Justin Timberlake was supposed to be Curtis Mayfield, finally recorded the solid work he had in him, and the singles sound terrific on the radio.

I’ve reviewed many of these albums at Pitchfork or on this blog. Don’t take the order below seriously.

1. Charlotte Adigéry/Bolis Pupul- Topical Dancer
2. Spoon – Lucifer on the Sofa
3. Norma Tanega – I’m the Sky: Studio and Demo Recordings, 1964-1971
4. Porridge Radio – Waterslide, Diving Board, Ladder to the Sky
5. Miranda Lambert – Palomino
6. Pusha T – It’s Almost Dry
7. Big Thief – Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You
8. Denzel Curry – Melt My Eyez See Your Future
9. S.G. Goodman – Teeth Marks
10. Earl Sweatshirt – SICK!
11. Jazmine Sullivan – Heaux Tales, Mo’ Tales: The Deluxe
12. Nilüfer Yanya – PAINLESS
13. Willie Nelson – A Beautiful Time
14. Kendrick Lamar – Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers
14. Oumou Sangaré – Timbuktu
15. Wet Leg – Wet Leg
16. Destroyer – Labyrinthitis
17. Mr. Fingers – Around the Sun pt. 1
18. Ella Mai – Heart on My Sleeve
19. Harry Styles – Harry’s House
20. Bonnie Raitt – Just Like That

One thought on “I can’t wait to make our memories rhyme: The best albums of 2022, first edition

  1. Guess I’ll post mine:

    1. Conway The Machine – God Don’t Make Mistakes
    2. Soul Glo – Diaspora Problems
    3. Billy Woods – Aethiopes
    4. Miranda Lambert – Palomino
    5. Big Thief – Dragon Whatever
    6. Benny The Butcher – Tana Talk 4
    7. Praise – All in a Dream
    8. Moon Tooth – Phototroph
    9. Lil Supa – Yeyo
    10. Pinegrove – 11:11
    11. Pusha T – It’s Almost Dry
    12. Boldy James – Killing Nothing
    13. Gospel – The Loser
    14. Oso Oso – Sore Thumb
    15. Joshua Hedley- Neon Blue

    I’ll stop there.

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