QSO Media's Most Anticipated Albums of 2022
There's a lot of great albums coming this year. Here's 10 that we're excited for.
It's easy to be overwhelmed by the sheer amount of new music that's out there. Just in the first two months of 2022, we've had amazing records by Mitski, Spector, Earl Sweatshirt, Black Dresses, Shamir, and many, many more. There's so many albums due for release this year that are sure to blow your mind - far too many to fit into just one article! That being said, I've narrowed down my list to ten of the most exciting upcoming releases. All of these albums are due for release over the next year, and I cannot wait to hear them. You can read my thoughts below, listen to pre-release singles, and preorder the records to support the artists directly. If there's any I've missed, sound off in the comments below!
Crash - Charli XCX
Vroom vroom. Here at QSO, we LOVE Charli XCX. Her last album, the underrated how I’m feeling now, was one of our favourite albums of 2020. The lead singles for Crash are a delightful departure, dipping into sample-heavy pop with a distinct garage influence. With a range of brilliant producers, from A. G. Cook to Oneohtrix Point Never, there’s bound to be some new bangers to soundtrack the rest of the year. And of course, with Charli being one of the best songwriters in pop, you just KNOW it’s going to be great.
Listen to this: Lead single Good Ones sounds just as fresh as it did when it first came out. The way Charli’s voice blends into the melody of the synth lead is just irresistible.
Crash is released March 18. Preorder it here.
Never Let Me Go - Placebo
Oh Placebo, how we’ve missed you. Their 2009 gem Battle for the Sun was a key album in soundtracking my adolescence, and Brian Molko was one of the first queer icons I ever had. It feels incredible to be witnessing their return, with Never Let Me Go marking their first album in nine years. With promising lead singles showing a bigger sound than ever before and reaffirming them as one of the greatest bands in the world, it feels good to have them back.
Listen to this: Molko’s gift for melody remains one of the best, and Try Better Next Time proves it: a harrowing tale of environmental destruction wrapped up in a perfect grunge package.
Never Let Me Go is released March 25. Preorder it here.
Absolution - Riverby
As soon as I heard Smart Mouth, the blistering debut album by Riverby, I knew I’d found a new favourite band. That being said, all the lead singles for their sophomore record Absolution have blown their debut out of the water. Singer and songwriter August Greenberg is a phenomenal lyricist and arranger, and the new singles prove it, from the merciless fury of Baseless to the heavenly Chapel. I can’t wait to hear the full record, and if you’ve heard any of the singles, I just know you’ll feel the same.
Listen to this: Second single Birth By Sleep is a concise summary of everything that makes Riverby great - clever, catchy songwriting, lacerating lyrics, and an incredible guitar hook.
Absolution is released March 25. Preorder it here.
The Unraveling of PupTheBand - PUP
I first got into PUP seeing them open for The Menzingers way back in 2018. I'd never before seen a band so accurately translate the energy and chaos of a live show into a studio record. They've fed the hype for their upcoming fourth album, The Unraveling of PupTheBand to incredible heights, whether it's through the trolly meta marketing or the titanic singles. Morbid Stuff was one of my favourite albums of the last decade, and it looks like PUP are on track to stake a claim for this decade too.
Listen to this: The incredibly catchy Robot Writes A Love Song is everything a great PUP song should be.
The Unraveling of PupTheBand is released on April 1. Preorder it here.
Nothing's Ever Fine - Oceanator
If you haven’t heard Oceanator’s incredible debut album, Things I Never Said, you NEED to change that. With soaring hooks, incising lyrics, and colossal guitar riffs, it made for one of the best albums of 2020, with songs like I Would Find You and The Sky is Falling becoming playlist staples of mine to this day. With two lead singles promising a bigger sound than ever before, Nothing’s Ever Fine is set to be one of the albums of the year. How could it not be?
Listen to this: The first time I heard Stuck, I instinctively started headbanging. With a riff that Black Sabbath would kill for, it’s an incredible anthem. The shift into double time is INCREDIBLE.
Nothing's Ever Fine is released on April 8. Preorder it here.
The Parts I Dread - Pictoria Vark
Iowa’s own Pictoria Vark’s debut album has been long awaited since 2018’s self-released Self Titled EP. The Parts I Dread follows a string of excellent singles including the beautiful I Can’t Bike and the anthemic Wyoming. Vark is a phenomenal songwriter, mixing complex arrangements with soaring, cinematic lyricism, and if the early singles are anything to go off of, then The Parts I Dread will be one of the albums of the year.
Listen to this: Latest single Demarest is phenomenal. Over delicate guitars and choral vocal arrangements, Vark sings her heart out on her best song yet.
The Parts I Dread is released on April 8. Preorder it here.
Bronco - Orville Peck
Saddle up, Orville Peck is back in fabulous fashion. His debut album Pony was an instant classic, and follow-up EP Show Pony showed him testing the waters for new styles. While we don’t know what awaits us on all of Bronco, he’s released the first two chapters already, which are full of instant classics that prove he’s one of the best country singers of our time. With plenty of singles to get your teeth into already, join us in getting hyped for what promises to be a phenomenal record. Yeehaw!
Listen to this: Opening track Daytona Sand is a blistering romp through the desert, a fantastic song that’s destined for every road trip playlist I’ll ever make.
Bronco is released on April 8. Preorder it here.
Prince Daddy and the Hyena - Prince Daddy and the Hyena
Prince Daddy and the Hyena's last album was the ambitious epic Cosmic Thrill Seekers. It remains underrated, in my opinion - fourteen tracks of pop-punk joy mixed with existential galactic dread. Their upcoming self-titled third album is poised to be their best record yet, with recent single A Random Exercise in Impermanence (The Collector) being a musical and lyrical delight. For a band that continue to build on each of their releases with new ideas, you don't want to miss out on where they'll take us next.
Listen to this: Lead single Curly Q is one of their best songs thus far, a beautifully melodic anthem that can stand above their storied back catalogue.
Prince Daddy and the Hyena is released on April 15. Preorder it here.
Alpha Games - Bloc Party
Bloc Party have always been one of my favourite bands. I’ve loved all of their records, from the all-time classic Silent Alarm to their underrated comeback album, Hymns, that showcased them experimenting with softer textures. If the singles for Alpha Games are any indication, then they’ve got another classic on their hands. From the unbridled fury of Traps to the four-on-the-floor banger that is Sex Magik, they’ve brought together every disparate corner of their styles into one incredibly promising whole. Bring it on.
Listen to this: Second single The Girls are Fighting is sure to be a future greatest-hits contender, with it’s unforgettable chorus and bouncy rhythm. It’s the sort of song that no other band could write.
Alpha Games is released on April 29. Preorder it here.
Super Champon - Otoboke Beaver
Otoboke Beaver are one of the best punk bands of all time. Their incredible debut album Itekoma Hits was a musical tornado, full of whip-smart writing and fiery energy. With several incredible singles released since, the stage is set for their second album, Super Champon, to be one of the albums of the year. If you like rock music, you need to hear this album. Otoboke Beaver are incredible and deserve to be so much more popular than they are, and if there's any justice, Super Champon should make them household names.
Listen to this: The incredibly named Dirty Old Fart Is Waiting For My Reaction is perfect - a minute-long irresistible frenzy.
Super Champon is released on May 4. Preorder it here.
AC is the Head of Written Content at QSO Media. Follow them on Twitter.