I’ll just quickly recap for those at the back who might have been late back from the shops. This is the second part of a rundown of what I consider to be the best 40 tracks that I have heard this year. They are a mixture of tracks that I have heard on the radio, via other blogs, word of mouth or some other medium.
This week we are starting here.
35. Bad Love – Dehd (2022, Fat Possum Records, Taken from ‘Blue Skies’)
Dehd are a three piece from Chicago that make excellent indie rock that blissfully recalls lost love, youth and all the things in between. Like so many other bands, in 2020, Dehd looked set for big things, they had an excellent debut album which spun a lovely sense of adventure and looked to be a thrilling road trip. Then we got a continuous cough and had to shut the doors in peoples faces.
In 2022, they released the follow up the terrific, ‘Blue Skies’ and from which the lead single and album highlight was ‘Bad Love’. A colossal anthem of swaggering despair which turns into about half through the indie rock version of a confessional session with your local priest. It’s held together marvellously by the raspy emotional holler of singer Emily Kempf.
34. Dancing is Not A Crime – Afflecks Palace (2022, Spirit of Spike Island Records, Taken from ‘The Only Light In This Tunnel is the Oncoming Train’)
Afflecks Palace are a band from Manchester that are named after a legendary Manchester nightclub. They are also signed to a record label that recalls the Stone Roses love in at Spike Island and they make music that takes all the best bits from the old Manchester scene that we know and love and somehow make them sound brand new and modern.
I mean what’s not to love. ‘Dancing is not a Crime’ is a baggy, psychedelic triumph from start to finish.
33. Have It Your Own Way – L’Objectif (2021, Chess Club Records, Taken from ‘Have It Your Own Way EP’)
I have mentioned Leeds combo L’Objectif before, but again for the latecomers at the back. They formed at school and used to skive off drama classes to make music in music room rather than pretend to be trees with the rest of the kids. They make a rollicking form of indie rock that sounds way more mature than teenagers making indie punk rock should. If that’s not too patronising. ‘Have It Your Own Way’ is probably the most accessible track that the band have recorded, seamlessly adding an hypnotic disco-ish beat to the music and the snotty lyrics.
32. Look the Other Way – Sour Widows (2021, Exploding in Sound Records, Taken from ‘Crossing Over’)
Sour Widows were a band I first stumbled across whilst I was researching bands for the Previously Unheard of….section of Major League Music. They hail from Oakland and their ‘Crossing Over’ EP was one of this years most pleasant surprises. ‘Look the Other Way’ is one of those tracks, slow burning guitars that eventually wind up into a brilliant solo, cymbals that tinkle rather than crash and lyrics that are just downright beautiful “Someday I’ll be as dead as a star”. Lovely.
31. Angelica – Wet Leg (2022, Domino Records, Taken from ‘Wet Leg’)
After nearly taking over the world last year, Wet Leg have sort of owned 2022. I mean they were pretty much always going to do that. They have spent most of the year playing to sold out crowds across the UK, Europe and in the States, wherever they go seem to be a massive success. ‘Angelica’ sees the band adopt a similar stance to ‘Chaise Longue’, its full of spiky melody, layered vocals which hints at the type of New Wave style first adopted by Elastica all those years ago. Wet Leg are a lot of fun and I hope they stick around for ever.