Another year passes, another great set of albums worthy of your time and attention. 2022 saw quite a few major releases, as well-known names like Beyonce and Kendrick Lamar returned after long breaks. Scene veterans such as Bjork and Beth Orton also gave us new material that felt exciting and creatively risky. Meanwhile, acts like The 1975 and Alvvays essentially perfected their particular sounds on fresh records. It’s also heartening to witness some rising stars deliver LPs that followed through on their talent – looking in your direction, Wet Leg and Ravyn Lenae (among others). Honestly, overall it felt like this was another strong year for music, even as the industry continues to slowly re-shape itself coming out of the pandemic. Here’s hoping that artists start to get more of a fair cut of from their work, because streaming payments remain dismal and touring faces new challenges with rising costs.

Below you will find my Top 50 Albums of 2022, along with 10 more “honorable mentions” because there were a few more records deserving of a spotlight. If you’re so inclined and haven’t listened to all of these albums, it goes without saying (and yet I’m saying it) you should give them at least a cursory listen. You might just discover a new favorite. I’ve included a Bandcamp or Spotify link to each record so you can have easy access to streaming or buying them. Let’s get this party started!

Honorable Mentions (in alphabetical order):
Automatic – Excess [Bandcamp]
Daphni – Cherry [Bandcamp]
Dawn Richard & Spencer Zahn – Pigments [Bandcamp]
Fievel Is Glauque – Flaming Swords [Bandcamp]
Horsegirl – Versions of Modern Performance [Bandcamp]
Jenny Hval – Classic Objects [Spotify]
MUNA – MUNA [Bandcamp]
The Orielles – Tableau [Bandcamp]
Pusha T – It’s Almost Dry [Bandcamp]
Wild Pink – ILYSM [Bandcamp]

50. Mitski – Laurel Hell [Bandcamp]

49. Mavi – Laughing so Hard, it Hurts [Spotify]

48. Chat Pile – God’s Country [Bandcamp]

47. Spoon – Lucifer on the Sofa [Bandcamp]

46. Makaya McCraven – In These Times [Bandcamp]

45. Florence + the Machine – Dance Fever [Spotify]

44. Perfume Genius – Ugly Season [Bandcamp]

43. FKA twigs – Caprisongs [Spotify]

42. Beach House – Once Twice Melody [Bandcamp]

41. Black Country, New Road – Ants From Up There [Bandcamp]

40. Earl Sweatshirt – Sick! [Spotify]

39. Weyes Blood – And in the Darkness, Hearts Aglow [Bandcamp]

38. Amber Mark – Three Dimensions Deep [Spotify]

37. Utada Hikaru – Bad モード [Spotify]

36. MJ Lenderman – Boat Songs [Bandcamp]

35. Destroyer – LABYRINTHITIS [Bandcamp]

34. Cate Le Bon – Pompeii [Bandcamp]

33. Charli XCX – Crash [Spotify]

32. Denzel Curry – Melt My Eyez See Your Future [Bandcamp]

31. Panda Bear and Sonic Boom – Reset [Bandcamp]

30. Beth Orton – Weather Alive [Bandcamp]

29. Florist – Florist [Bandcamp]

28. The 1975 – Being Funny in a Foreign Language [Bandcamp]

27. Soccer Mommy – Sometimes, Forever [Bandcamp]

26. Ravyn Lenae – HYPNOS [Spotify]

25. Grace Ives – Janky Star [Spotify]

24. Bjork – Fossora [Bandcamp]

23. Kendrick Lamar – Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers [Spotify]

22. Alex G – God Save the Animals [Bandcamp]

21. Steve Lacy – Gemini Rights [Spotify]

20. Charlotte Adigéry & Bolis Pupul – Topical Dancer [Bandcamp]

19. The Weeknd – Dawn FM [Spotify]

18. Lucrecia Dalt – ¡Ay! [Bandcamp]

17. The Beths – Expert in a Dying Field [Bandcamp]

16. Yaya Bey – Remember Your North Star [Bandcamp]

15. Soul Glo – Diaspora Problems [Bandcamp]

14. Special Interest – Endure [Bandcamp]

13. The Smile – A Light for Attracting Attention [Bandcamp]

12. Rachika Nayar – Heaven Come Crashing [Bandcamp]

11. Nilüfer Yanya – PAINLESS [Bandcamp]

10. Bad Bunny – Un Verano Sin Ti [Spotify]

9. Wet Leg – Wet Leg [Bandcamp]

8. billy woods – Aethiopes [Bandcamp]

7. Jockstrap – I Love You Jennifer B [Bandcamp]

6. Big Thief – Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You [Bandcamp]

5. SZA – S.O.S. [Spotify]

4. Rosalia – Motomami [Spotify]

3. Alvvays – Blue Rev [Bandcamp]

2. Beyonce – Renaissance [Spotify]

1. Sudan Archives – Natural Brown Prom Queen [Bandcamp]