Music has always been a reflection of the times, and 2022 is no different. As we look back at some of the most worthless songs of the year, we can see how the trends of 2022 shaped what was popular. From cringe-worthy lyrics to overproduced beats, there were plenty of songs that should have missed instead of hitting anything, much less the charts. In this article, we'll take a closer look at these hits that should have tanked and why they should have stayed off our playlists.
1. Machine Gun Kelly: "Emo Girl"
It's no surprise that Machine Gun Kelly's latest single "Emo Girl" has been met with a lot of criticism. From the lyrics to the music video, it appears to be a misguided attempt at capturing the emotion and angst of being an "emo girl". With cheesy, forced lyrics, it makes us question just who he was dedicating this ode to awkward puberty. Or, maybe, we just answered that question. Unfortunately, it falls short and leaves us wondering if MGK should have left this one on the cutting room floor.
2. Kid Rock: "We the People"
At some point, one has to wonder where patriotism ends and pure, unabashed pandering begins. I think the answer can be found in literally any Kid Rock attempt at a rich boy losing touch with reality. Trying to sum up what I just listened to in actual words is proving difficult, but if there's one thing I didn't need this year, it's more politically driven butt-rock at the dirty hands of Kid Rock. Yet it was inevitable. It's honestly funny how hard this song goes in the last twenty seconds before that horrible crowd chanting comes on. The problem with this track is that it's just so immature and so distasteful that I don't want to know what to do with it. Who enjoys this sort of thing, especially unironically? It's painful.
3. AJR: "The DJ is Crying for Help"
Of course the DJ is crying for help, he's being tied up, gagged, and forced to comply with AJR's policy to play this drivel. The DJ is me and I'm losing my mind. Do you know what I really don't understand about this song? The fake Lindsey Stirling feature in the chorus. Such a random violin inclusion, huh. Anyway, this is probably the blandest, most artificial song the band has released - an encapsulation of brutal criticism in the music sphere that has led them to strip things back and make everything as bland as possible in the fear that someone will destroy them. Is it wrong to say I miss the old AJR? At least the "Neotheater" album felt genuine and authentic, as bad as AJR's authenticity is. Anyway... the only positive of this song is that the lyrics are mostly harmless apart from the fact that a lot of them feel like they've been pulled from Sadboy Tumblr, inducing a certain level of cringe that isn't quite palatable.
4. Gayle: "indiedgycool"
Firstly, the diction in the first verse is really odd. Vocally, Gayle sounds godawful and the transition from pre-chorus to chorus has this whiny, horrible screech that tries to add tension but sounds absolutely terrible. The left-panned coughing moment really sours the song for me, but then... These lyrics are so brilliantly irritating. From the rich parents shit to being an iNdiE eDgY cOoL KiD! and not being born in the 90s... This song is the definition of gimmicky and not in a good way. It's insufferable thematically. The mixing feels shoddy as hell, with Gayle's vocals often clashing with the guitar in a way that feels awkward and... kinda unlistenable. The people talking in the background does nothing for me. It just feels dumb. This is just the Gen-Z pop rock of my nightmares and I want it to go away. Thank you. Ultimate cringe moment.
5. Lil Pump & Soulja Boy: "Mona Lisa"
I don't understand why the piano is so prominent on this track, it feels so out of place and... oddly basic. The main hook is also extremely basic ('shout out to Mona Lisa' x4) and makes me just wonder what was the reason for this song. Why does it exist? The lines meant to be savage (namely the mother and dick line) just feel completely lifeless. Lil Pump sounds just completely dead on this track and while Soulja Boy is at least a little more energetic, the energy just isn't matched. And it doesn't help that the production is just so simple. To conclude, it's pretty trash, but it's not unbearable. It's just...odd.
In conclusion, none of these songs improve a playlist unless you're tone-deaf and/or have a personal beef with your ears. But, they definitely have a use. The neighbors next door who let their Lab shit on your lawn again? I'm sure they'll come to realize that they could be living next to a psychopath. Just throw Gayle on the speakers on repeat and confirm it. Tread lightly, bitches.