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Llama's Favorites of 2022

I feel like this was a good music year for all genres. I could go on all day about the great albums that came out this year. Despite what my social media might look like, I did listen to music besides Taper's Choice this year. There were a ton of great albums, but I think we can all agree that a return to a somewhat normal concert experience was the musical highlight of 2022. I present to you my favorite albums of this year.


 

The Choice Tapes Volumes 1-4 - Taper's Choice

This jamband came bursting onto the scene this year and released four rocking volumes of their Choice Tapes. Compromised of studio and live performances, the Choice Tapes showcases the band's rapidly growing repitoire and provides glimpses into what the future may hold for TC. Favorite tracks, volume three side one and volume one side two.


The Car - Arctic Monkeys

I am one of the few AM fans that enjoyed their previous piano-heavy effort. I feel like this album offers a little more rock to those who missed that on Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino. The album feels like a finale of sorts to the Arctic Monkeys. I'm genuinely hoping I'm wrong, but I don't want to miss them on their tour next year. Favorite tracks: "Jet Skis on the Moat" and "The Car."


Cheat Codes - Danger Mouse & Black Thought

This might be my favorite Danger Mouse collab since The Mouse and the Mask. The entire album flows well, and the guest verses only strengthen a great record. "Belize" gets most of the love appropriately, but I think "The Darkest Part" is my favorite track of this stellar collection. Favorite tracks: "The Darkest Part" and "Strangers"


Dripfield - Goose

This is the album I am going to use to try to get my non-jamband friends into jam music. Goose makes excellent use of their studio time, and adding Stuart Bogie on sax for a few songs doesn't hurt. The indie and '80s influences meld together to form something that captures a band just now coming into their own. Favorite tracks: "Hot Tea" and "Slow Ready"


Harry's House - Harry Styles

As solid as pop albums come, Harry's House perfectly weaved its way throughout the year in various social settings. The music is catchy and very dancable but also serves well soundtracking everyday life. Favorite tracks: "Music for a Sushi Restuarant" and "Matilda."


A Light for Attracting Attention - The Smile

It's nearly impossible to not compare this album to Radiohead and I'm not going to try. This is the band that everyone thought Muse was going to be back when they started. It's the album I was hoping Radiohead's King of Limbs was going to sound like. I hope this band continues to make albums. Favorite tracks: "You Will Never Work in Television Again" and "The Smoke."


We Found Home - Arc Iris

Jocie Adams is a dynamic vocalist and the latest often from Arc Iris has plenty of moments where her voice shines. We Found Home is dreamy album of synth pop perfection. Favorite tracks: "Gin and Chocolate" and "Swing Sweet Emily."


Ants From Up There - Black Country, New Road

I know this is the last album with this band's line up due to the departure of lead singer and guitarist Isaac Wood, but what he left behind is fascinating. I haven't been so enamored with a "chamber pop" band album since the early Arcade Fire days. Favorite tracks: "Chaos Space Marine" and "Snow Globes."


Hollywood Visit - Dave Harrington and Tim Mislock

This album came when at the perfect time when I needed something chill and peaceful to recenter everything. This instrumental album, made with bits from a songwriting retreat, captures the peacefulness of the desert and evokes a calmness towards the listener. Favorite tracks: "The Corner Doctor," "Ask the Dusk," and "Man Never Said."

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