I’ve been putting together a list of my favorite albums since at least 2005. And here we are at the end of another year, so I suppose it’s time to once again figure out what albums I should decide are those that best defined my last twelve months. I listened to more music in 2022 than any year I can remember (let alone that I’ve tracked), and trying to distill it all down is harder than ever. But, we might as well try.
Favorite Albums of 2022
- Cold Years – Goodbye to Misery
- Coheed and Cambria – Vaxis II: A Window of the Waking Mind
- Dashboard Confessional – All the Truth That I Can Tell
- MUNA – MUNA
- The 1975 – Being Funny in a Foreign Language
- Underoath – Voyeurist
- Pale Waves – Unwanted
- Gang of Youths – Angel in Real Time.
- Pinkshift – Love Me Forever
- Death Cab for Cutie – Asphalt Meadows
- A Wilhelm Scream – Lose Your Delusion
- Kendrick Lamar – Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers
- Comeback Kid – Heavy Steps
- Butch Walker – Butch Walker as… Glenn
- NoSo – Stay Proud of Me
- Greyhaven – This Bright and Beautiful World
- Anxious – Little Green House
- Carly Rae Jepsen – The Loneliest Time
- Rolo Tomassi – Where Myth Becomes Memory
- Sigrid – How to Let Go
- Caracara – New Preoccupations
- Young the Giant – American Bollywood
- Sasha Alex Sloan – I Blame the World
- The Weeknd – Dawn FM
- Stand Atlantic – f.e.a.r.
- The Faim – Talk Talk
- The Midnight – Heroes
- The Wonder Years – The Hum Goes on Forever
- The Devil Wears Prada – Color Decay
- Taylor Swift – Midnights
There’s always a good chance that if I write a review about something, it’s hit me on a different level. And boy did that Cold Years album hit me this year. I wrote it about it in detail, so I don’t want to re-hash that here, but the way it captured the feeling of unease and underlying anger of the past few pandemic years pushed it into rarefied air. It was by far my most played album of the year and it’s the kind of album I’ll be returning to for years to come. A staple of my music collection and already in my upper pantheon of favorite albums, ever.
The rest of my list sees some familiar faces. We had The 1975 releasing one of their most consistent albums in a long time, Underoath starting the year with a bang, and then artists like Death Cab for Cutie and Dashboard Confessional coming back with, in my opinion, their best albums in years. We also have some new entries. Pinkshift dropped one of the best aggressive pop-punk albums of the year. NoSo knocked me on my ass with their debut album. Comeback Kid, Greyhaven, and The Devil Wears Prada dominated my gym playlists this year. And then we have MUNA completing a three album run that I’d put up with just about anyone’s catalog. And that’s all before talking about some of the greats adding to their already stellar reputations (Butch Walker, Carly Rae Jepsen, The Wonder Years, Taylor Swift, Kendrick Lamar).
When I look at it all as a whole, the best I can say is that I loved this year of music. There are so many albums that moved me, and so many albums that I’ll hold as keepsakes of the past twelve months.
The Stats: I listened to over 12,288 songs this year (26,300 scrobbles), 748 different artists, and 1,630 different albums. Last year will get credit for two things. First, it kicked me back into a different level for just how much music I regularly consume. It pushed me back to where I was in my teens, where music seemed to be in my ears at virtually any moment it could. And second, it got me back to being very diligent about tracking my listening through Last.fm. This is the first full year, in a long time, where I’m pretty confident almost everything I listened to was tracked. My most listened to artist of the year was, once again, Blink-182. The Ataris’ made a good run for the top spot this year, but the reunion with Tom was more than enough to put my comfort blanket band right back at the top of the list (just look at that October boost). My most played album was my favorite album of the year, so, that tracks.
Thank you to everyone that read this website this year, it’s because of you, and especially those of you that support the website, that we exist. Also, if you want to hear more from me throughout the year, specifically once a week as I write about music and entertainment I find interesting, sign up for my newsletter.
To make it easy to check out music from everyone on this list, each of the albums above links to the album’s streaming page. And there’s a playlist of a song from each album here.
- 5 Seconds of Sumer – 5SOS5
- Anna of the North – Crazy Life
- Armor for Sleep – The Rain Museum
- Arms Length – Never Before Seen, Never Again Found
- Avril Lavigne – Love Sux
- Bartees Strange – Farm to Table
- Betty Who – Big!
- Blackbear – In Loving Memory
- Charlie Simpson – Hope is a Drug
- Dayseeker – Dark Sun
- Demi Lovato – Holy FVCK
- Drug Church – Hygiene
- Harry Styles – Harry’s House
- Hatchie – Giving the World Away
- Iann Dior – On to Better Things
- L.S. Dunes – Past Lives
- Lauv – All 4 Nothing
- Lit – Tastes Like Gold
- Maggie Rogers – Surrender
- Matt Nathanson – Boston Accent
- Mom Jeans – Sweet Tooth
- No Devotion – No Oblivion
- One OK Rock – Luxury Disease
- Panic! at the Disco – Viva Las Vengeance
- Phoenix – Alpha Zulu
- Prince Daddy and the Hyena – Prince Daddy and the Hyena
- Rocky Votolato – Wild Roots
- Simple Plan – Harder Than it Looks
- Slowly Slowly – Daisy Chain
- Soccer Mommy – Sometimes, Forever
- Soul Glo – Diaspora Problems
- Spanish Love Songs – Brave Faces Etc.
- Sunsleeper – While You Can
- Tegan and Sara – Crybaby
- The Dangerous Summer – Coming Home
- The Early November – 20
- The Interrupters – In the Wild
- The Smile – A Light for Attracting Attention
- The Stereo – Thirteen
- The Wrecks – Sonder
- Third Eye Blind – Unplugged
- Tove Lo – Dirt Femme
- Unwritten Law – The Hum
- Vein.fm – The World is Going to Ruin You
- Yungblud – Yungblud
The simple truth is that it’s just a product of habit and inertia to only rank the top thirty each year. With more time, I could probably come up with a hundred albums I think are worthy of being on a list like this and would find some way to put them in some kind of order. After my top thirty this is the next group of albums that I spent a lot of time with this year and think are worth your time. On any given day, catching me at the right time, and I could easily have seen myself putting many of these in the “main” list. So, what I’m saying is: don’t sleep on these!
Favorite EPs of 2022
- Anberlin – Silverline
- Spiritbox – Rotoscope
- Wolf Alice – Blue Lullaby
- Yours Truly – Is This What I Look Like?
- Rise Against – Nowhere Generation II
- Gordi – Inhuman
If an EP, or something EP length, gets an extraordinary amount of listens from me in a year, I have no problems putting it in my main list, but often I find myself just not returning to singles and/or EPs as often as I do full-length albums. These are the EPs released this year that I liked the most.
Movies I Enjoyed in 2022
- All Quiet on the Western Front
- Drive My Car
- Everything Everywhere All at Once
- Jackass Forever
- Licorice Pizza
- Marcel the Shell with Shoes On
- The Batman
- The Fabelmans
- The Redeem Team
- The Suicide Squad
- The Worst Person in the World
- Top Gun: Maverick
I watched over 120 films in 2022, and this list contains the movies I saw for the first time in 2022 that I liked the most. Top Gun: Maverick and The Batman were probably my “favorite” films of the year, both capturing the wonder and scale I love in movies. You can find more of my movie watching habits and ratings on Letterboxd.
TV Shows in Enjoyed in 2022
- Black Bird
- Derry Girls
- Doctor Who
- Harley Quinn
- Heartbreak High
- Ms Marvel
- Saved by the Bell
- Shining Girls
- Star Trek: Strange New Worlds
- Star Wars: Andor
- Station Eleven
- Stranger Things
- The Bear
- The Boys
- The Captain
- The Rehearsal
- The Rings of Power
- The Wonder Years
- Tokyo Vice
- Under the Banner of Heaven
- We Own This City
- Welcome to Wrexham
According to Trakt, I watched over 932 episodes of TV in 2022 and 75 different TV shows. My most-watched show was It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which tracks with the re-watch we started about mid-year. I think Star Trek: Strange New Worlds ended up being my favorite show of the year, with Andor being a close second. And Severance, Station Eleven, and Welcome to Wrexham could all make a good case as well. You can find more of my TV watching habits and ratings on Trakt.
Books I Enjoyed in 2022
I only read seven books (2,916 pages) in 2022. Not my best year and something I hope to increase in 2023. I feel like I say that every year. There’s a pile of books sitting on my shelves (and on my Kindle) that are just crying out to me for attention.
Apps I Discovered and Enjoyed in 2022
It wasn’t a big “new software” year for me. Marvis continues to be the app I’m probably most happy with on iOS, but Choosy is indispensable on my Mac. ReadKit had great updates on all platforms this year to finally becoming my default “reader” app everywhere. And, I made a late switch at the end of the year from Alfred to Raycast and am still feeling it out, but I think it’s going to stick.
My Favorite Articles of 2022
- The New Home Office
- Review: Cold Years – Goodbye to Misery
- Interview: Midtown
- 2022 Holiday Gift Guide
- A Year of Liner Notes
I wrote 1,525 articles on the website this year for a total of 212,723 words.
And, with that, we put a bow on 2022. As always, thank you for reading and spending yet another year with me.