Top 30 albums of 2022

20. Burial – Streetlands

The only real thing I’m going to say about Burial and his new EP Streetlands is that listening to this on a cold afternoon out in London with headphones on is one of the most peaceful and grounding listening experiences you’ll have. The synth-led melodies are beautiful and emotive, capturing the beauty and loneliness of London.

19. Obongjayar – Some Nights I Dream of Doors

Up until this year, Obongjayar, the Nigerian-born, London-based artist has been releasing incredible singles that take inspiration from afrobeat, soul and hip-hop music, complementing the organic, rich sound with his unique, husky voice that sounds so soothing and embracing. His debut album, Some Nights I Dream of Doors is a culmination of years of hard-work and dedication to his craft, and the warm, inviting album is one of the most soulful and potent albums to come out this year. It’s grown on me a whole lot. Review

18. billy woods & Messiah Musik – Church

The fact that billy woods’ second release of the year Church isn’t really among my favourite woods releases but still lands firmly within my top 20 is a testament to his artistry. Produced entirely by Messiah Musik, the swirling, sometimes subdued production gives woods the ability to paint his vivid stories and observations about life around him in his usually fascinating way. As usual, it’s an album that is striking and just so immersive that I had to include it here. Review

17. Makaya McCraven – In These Times

Makaya McCraven has over the last few years become one of my favourite jazz musicians making music today. His incredible drumming and his intricate compositions make for a soulful and immersive listening experience, as the live brass and wind instrumentation is complemented by incredible basslines and drumming, creating inspiring and beautiful melodies in the process. It’s really one of the more rhythming and groovy albums to come out this year. Review

16. Oscar Jerome – The Spoon

An important member of the burgeoning London jazz scene, Oscar Jerome has exceeded expectations yet again with a soulful, textured and incredibly beautiful new album titled The Spoon. His guitar leads are incredibly vibrant, with picturesque soundscapes and Oscar Jerome’s soothing voice. He takes you on a journey through his mind, talking about anxiety, and finding space for creativity among other things. It’s his most complete album to date and one that deserves all the recognition. Review

15. Jeshi – Universal Credit

On his debut album Universal Credit, Jeshi puts his heart on display, releasing a triumphant album about his working-class upbringing, with futuristic, drill- inspired production as well as more soulful moments that enable him to paint pictures of his youth and his experiences growing up perfectly. The production is animated and intricate, with Jeshi’s lyricism improving quite a lot in the process as well. It’s one of the defining UK-rap albums of the year, so it’s one I encourage every hip-hop fan to listen to. Review

14. Contour – Onwards!

Contour’s Onwards! is one of the more emotive albums to come out this year. From his gorgeous vocals to the warm, stunning instrumentation, he is able to convey his emotions poignantly and share his thoughts on the state of the world around him, through the lense of his own Black experience. It’s an incredible body of work that again showcases why he’s one of the most talented writers of this generation. Review

13. SOUL GLO – Diaspora Problems

Over 12 tracks and 39 minutes, SOUL GLO brought all the fucking energy you can imagine in an angry, politically charged punk album that is unfiltered in every sense of the word. Diaspora Problems is my punk album of the year – a vast, heavy body of work that just brings heat from opening to closing track. Heavy guitar riffs, loud angry vocals, and a vast and eclectic soundscape that also includes some very noticeable hip-hop influences, both in production and vocal delivery. Review

12. Goya Gumbani & Kiina – Face In the Storm

London-based New York emcee Goya Gumbani has been making some of my favourite hip-hop music of the last few years. His 2020 album with London-based producer Kiina The Lesser-Known is one of my favourites of that year, so it felt natural for me to include their sophomore release as a duo Face In the Storm on my list this year. Soulful, groovy, hard-hitting, the production is perfect for Goya’s introspective lyricism. It’s as silky smooth as anything else they’ve done, and I’m so happy seeing their artistic growth. I’m sure there’s still so much more to come. Review

11. Quelle Chris – DEATHFAME

Quelle Chris has been a regular feature in my end-of-year lists for quite a long time now, so it’s not surprising that his album DEATHFAME has made my list. With varied and always eclectic production, he is able to meander throughout these soundscapes with ease, taking on topics like celebrity worship, living life on your own terms despite the world around you crumbling, in his usually unorthodox and unique ways. There’s so much to take in on this album, with the features also adding so much character to the sound and themes of the album. Review

Hey everyone, thanks for stopping by. I run In Search Of Media with the aim of giving a platform to independent beatmakers, rappers and talented musicians. I also hope to make this a home for music discovery, interesting film analysis, exhibition reviews and other interesting content for all of you guys to dive in to. I hope to start a podcast and documentary-style project soon. If you're looking to be a part of this creative project, please go to the contact page and drop me an email, or connect via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. I also write for 'Music Is My Sanctuary.' Thanks 🙏

1 comment on “Top 30 albums of 2022

  1. Pingback: Top 100 songs of the year 2022 – In Search of Media

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