It’s time for the monthly post detailing what albums and artists I’ve been listening to called What I’ve Heard: October 2022 Edition. Only one more of these posts for the year before locking in my Top 20 Albums of 2022 albums post in December!

  • The newest from Kings Kaleidoscope takes the top spot for me this month and that’s pretty amazing considering it released on the 28th. I’ve rarely tried harder to like an album after initially being completely underwhelmed, but I’ve made peace with a like, not love of Baptized Imagination. After more time with the album, it’s still a hard listen but I think the fragmented and incomplete feel of the short songs is intentionally done to denote the anxiety and deconstruction Chad was struggling with. The final three songs offer the light/hope of Christ as a response. I have to believe the already announced self-titled follow-up in April of 2023 will push further in this joyous direction. It’s a 4 Star album with some classic KK moments but not one as a whole piece I’m likely to tune into often. You can read a great review of the album by my friend Scott HERE.
  • Nautical rockers Rusty Shipp dropped their third album Dark Side of the Ocean on the 28th as well, and I’m happy to report that the previously released singles fare even better in the context of the concept album…AND what I think is the best song not previously released “Living Waters” rips. Add it to your alt-rock playlist post haste.
  • Two surprise albums and artists previously unknown to me All Ye Lepers (Joshua Leventhal) and There Will Be Surprises (Drew Miller) are making a play for Top 10 Album status. Both singer-songwriters and excellent lyricists I recommend trying “The Gallows” and “There Will Be Surprises” a go.
  • CCM legend Steven Curtis Chapman returned with his first full-length album of all-new songs in almost a decade titled Still, and I ended up liking a little less than half of it Another mixed bag. I wrote a short review of it over at JFH if you’re interested.
  • I wanted to like the Tyson Mostenbocker album Milk Teeth and gave it plenty of play but I’m just not into the musical direction, although lyrically it’s strong. My friend Chase gave it a fair detailed review over at Jesusfreakhideout if you’d like a more in-depth analysis.
  • I was excited to listen through the Electric Light Orchestra catalog for the first time and was overall impressed and delighted to find their deep cuts as good or better than the few hit songs I was familiar with. So catchy. Never boring. Out of the Blue is 5 Star amazing but I don’t think I hated any of their discography. All 3.5 stars or higher.
  • I quite obviously went on a Cranberries album kick, and I find myself returning to their stuff more frequently. Dolores’ voice is so acrobatic and captivating.
  • In my recent quest to stretch myself and listen to music for the vibe and feel (music over lyrics), I took the plunge with the Icelandic band Sigur Ros. Yes, I’m incredibly late to the party on their catalog as maybe the last music fan alive who hasn’t listened to their work, and I’m glad I went for it. I tried a few of their albums but Valtari has been the one that stuck, especially the song “Varuo” which has the most incredibly satisfying build in it this side of Coldplay’s “Fix You.” It’s not in English but you don’t need to understand the words to “feel it.” Watch the moving music video here: Sigur Ros – Varuo
  • The Beatles re-mastered Revolver so of course, I had to hear that.
  • Christian CCM band Third Day was a big part of my teen years, and none of their albums factored bigger than their 1995/1996 debut which got a 25-year re-release on vinyl. Through the generosity of a friend who mistakenly got two copies I scored one for music.
  • Another 90s gem by Burlap to Cashmere (Anybody Out There) got some love in preparation for its 25th anniversary next year. It’s such an “other” album for my taste, but I love the folky, Greek, flamenco, and acoustic stylings. Look for the album to feature in a 1998 retrospective next year.
  • I’m still listening (or listening again) to a few 2022 albums as we wind down the year and I whittle down my year-end list. Punk album by Light the Way, Electro/Pop album by CCM juggernaut For King & Country, a folk album by Drew & Ellie Holcomb, piano pop by Ben Rector, and singer/songwriter vines by Madison Cunningham are all still in the mix and will be tough to eliminate.
  • Also, you will see Movie soundtracks to two of my favorites (The Greatest Showman & La La Land) as I introduced my two oldest kids to La La Land the movie which had now become a favorite of theirs as well. Much to my delight of course.
  • Lastly, here’s my running 2022 Favorite Songs Playlist if you’d like some cherry-picked tunes. Hope you Enjoy!

What have you been listening to?