The Top Albums Of 2022, Entertainment Crew, Beyoncé, Kendrick Lamar, Harry Styles, And More Great Music

The Top Albums Of 2022: It’s the most lovely time of the year—the time when we compile lists of the best albums of the year and check them twice! Concerts were postponed for much of 2022, so we listened to music safely at home, but luckily, many excellent performers from a wide variety of genres supplied the perfect shut-in soundtracks. 

The records that got the Yahoo! Entertainment crew through another challenging year span a broad variety of genres and styles; scroll down to check out the various lists. Once all the votes are in, though, a consensus emerges: women and indie-rock performers have had their best showings in years.

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And in the Darkness, Hearts Aglow is the most critically lauded album by indie rock veteran Natalie Laura Mering, alias Weyes Blood, and it debuted at No. 10.

Not only does Mering make our list of top ten American female singer-songwriters, but so do the following artists: Big Time, Angel Olsen’s sixth studio album, comes in at No. 9, followed by Taylor Swift’s introspective twee-pop album Midnights at No. 8.

Fourth-place lifers Spoon’s new album, Lucifer on the Sofa, is a classic example of indie music, as our writer Robert Burke calls it “a record full of near-perfect songcraft.” Ten tracks with undeniable hooks, memorable melodies, and honest rock ‘n’ roll grit.

Pop, R&B, and other forms of dance music are particularly well represented elsewhere on our list. The Weeknd’s Dawn FM, described by our music editor Lyndsey Parker as the singer’s “most ambitious and fully realised to date,” comes in at number seven on the list.

Meanwhile, Latin superstar Bad Bunny’s blockbuster Un Verano Sin Ti debuts at number six. Beyoncé’s pulsating house music symphony, Renaissance, is ranked third (it has been called “one of the most wonderful joys of the pandemic” by our writer Billy Johnson Jr. and a “genuine masterpiece” by Sara Metcalf).

However, this year saw something of a British invasion, with two English pop provocateurs taking the top two slots on our list. Even though Harry Styles’s wonderful concept album, Harry’s House, came close to reaching the top spot, it was the sassy, saucy duo of Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers, or Wet Leg, who ultimately found success with their rowdy, rocking debut album of the same name. 

Several of our voters ranked Wet Leg as their favourite album of the year. Lori Majewski called it “a wonderful first record” and “just badass,” while Janine Schaults stated that “its short, punchy songs filled with acid-tongued lyrics made me learn to love rock again.” 

This concludes the discussion. Browse the varied album recommendations that follow, and here’s to an exciting year of listening in 2023!

  • Wet Leg – Wet Leg
  • Harry Styles – Harry’s House
  • Beyoncé – Renaissance
  • Spoon – Lucifer on the Sofa
  • Kendrick Lamar – Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers
  • Bad Bunny – Un Verano Sin Ti
  • The Weeknd – Dawn FM
  • Taylor Swift – Midnights
  • Angel Olsen – Big Time
  • Weyes Blood – And in the Darkness, Hearts Aglow
  • The Weeknd – Dawn FM
  • Harry Styles – Harry’s House
  • Tears for Fears – The Tipping Point
  • Lucius – Second Nature
  • Orville Peck – Bronco
  • The London Suede – Autofiction
  • Sloan – Steady
  • Miles Kane – Change the Show
  • Trixie Mattel – The Blonde & Pink Albums
  • Daniel Johns – FutureNever

Abel Tesfaye’s concept album, the mother-effin’ Starboy’s most ambitious and fully realised to date, is mellow-tarnished-gold. Radio may not have killed the video star, but Abel comes close on several occasions. 

In Dawn FM, the Weeknd plays a purgatorial anti-hero whose only companion on his trip to the afterlife is the eerie narration of late-night adult-contemporary radio DJ Jim Carrey. 

The accelerated-aging Tesfaye spirals out and confronts — unbandaged, unvarnished, unfiltered — the repercussions of the previous evening’s After Hours excess, and the result is a terrifying morning-after record. 

When Tesfaye finally gets where he’s going, what will happen to him? I can’t wait for the next fascinating, darkly imaginative pop artist to release his next nihilistic tale. –LP

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