2022 by its Artists #7: Ellie Bleach

The year according to one of our absolute favourite songwriters, whose debut EP came out in October.

Photo: Willow Shields | Words: Lloyd Bolton

On debut EP No Elegant Way to Sell Out, Ellie Bleach shows her formidable songwriting ability across a five-song picaresque. As long time fans of her work, we were glad to showcase her at our August Bank Holiday Weekender, where we also sat down for a biig chat about the new record. 2022 has taken Ellie on to Radio 1, to Belgium in tow with Black Country, New Road, and culminated in a Moth Club headline last October. Here are some of her musical highlights from the year.

Favourite Live Moment

I am terrible at pinpointing any single event but I’ve consistently had a great time at Ladies Night at The Windmill. A few Ladies Night highlights: ELSAS, Tyler Cryde, Platonica Erotica, Modern Woman and MAY.

Albums of the Year

Big Thief – Dragon New Warm Mountain

Breaking news: slightly introverted, sensitive woman loves Big Thief. I think one of the reasons this album resonated with a lot of us was the total absence of razzle-dazzle. Just beautifully written, innovative indie.

Julia Jacklin – PRE PLEASURE

In 2016 a friend sent me a link to Julia Jacklin’s debut single, claiming it was ‘my vibe.’ It was in fact, my vibe. Since then I’ve taken great pleasure in watching Julia Jacklin distil her songwriting formula, creating beautifully simple, timeless tracks. I loved PRE PLEASURE at first listen and truly believe she gets better every record. ‘Too In Love To Die’ stopped me in my tracks.

Mitski – Laurel Hell

I remember seeing a pull quote from a Mitski interview years ago saying ‘I’m waiting until everyone decides they hate me,’ and eerily enough it almost came true. The tiktokification of her discography cemented her rightfully earned indie legend status, yet her polite request for fans to not take so many photos at her shows riled up an angry mob of teenage bisexuals who haven’t been to any real-life concerts. Laurel Hell was the perfect retort. Mitski openly grapples with success and the process of creating art for the whole world to scrutinize. The fact that this album was born out of a contractual obligation was the icing on top of the meta cake.

Song of the Year

Personal song of the year: It Should Have Been Me – Yvonne Fair

Favourite song that actually came out this year: girlfriend – hemlocke springs

Photo: Indie Brewer

Personal Highlight

2022 was the year I birthed my debut EP, after a long gestation period. She came out on record too. As I am a little bit of a catastrophist and worry that one day the internet will totally switch off, I wanted to release my music on physical media so I can prove to my post-apocalyptic commune how I used to sing songs about cruise ship singers and wall street brokers.

Holding my record in my hand (singular) was a highlight of 2022, along with playing my release show with the magnificent traveling band.