Sunday Harvest: 2020 in Review

What, a ‘best of 2020’ list? Never seen one of those before…

Here at Bloom Sessions we love to support Northern voices, creativity, innovation and (above all) talented women and people of marginalised genders. So we thought, why not compile a list of our fav albums and tracks released in 2020?

Below are 6 albums and 6 tracks released last year by women and people of marginalised genders that we still can’t get enough of.

With so much to choose from, and in no particular order, this is the list we settled on…

Albums –

Phoebe Bridgers – Punisher

Cheïma: It is… let me find the right words… effortless good. Caught myself spending hours listening to this, daydreaming to Phoebe’s voice.

Some (me) might say it saved 2020.

> Listen here! <

Lady Gaga – Chromatica

Claire: I mean… do I really need to explain? Just listen to the transition between ‘Chromatica II’ and ‘911’ and you’ll understand. Gaga’s sixth studio album, showing no signs of slowing down – rather full speed ahead to electropop utopia.

It’s layered, bold, bright and above all – so danceable. It actually concerns me that grotty dancefloors everywhere haven’t experienced Chromatica yet… it’ll be too powerful.

> Listen here! <

Shamir – Shamir

Cheïma: Listen, I love a good pop album that knows how to navigate and play with genres. And this, this it. It is… the best. One of the best. Probably the best.

You’ll want to take the time to listen to this gem, trust me.

> Listen here! <

Mollie Coddled – The Halo Effect

Claire: Yes… I know, not an album, but still a piece worthy of respect. Mollie’s largest collective body of work to date, The Halo Effect seamlessly drizzles fan favs (‘One More Day’, ‘Love Deprived’) amongst new boppers.

I loved hearing ‘Velvet Tears’ during her Bloom Session but the EP version is otherworldly and let’s not forget that Mollie writes, produces and mixes her own music… no mean feat.

> Listen here! <

Babeheaven – Home for Now

Cheïma: I’ve discovered Babeheaven quite recently, with this album, and it’s probably one my favourite finds of 2020.

It is everything bedroom indie is supposed to be: dreamy, gentle, empowering, comforting.

> Listen here! <

Brooke Bentham – Everyday Nothing

Claire: There are albums you return to constantly after their release, not a dull squib but a delightful slow burner. Everyday Nothing is an album that on every listen I can find something new to appreciate.

It’s a beautiful collection of musings and intimacies. Even now, listening to ‘Perform for You’ stirs this intense emotion and catharsis brought on by its grungy melodies, haunting textures and poignant lyrics. Not to mention that Brooke is northern (wahey) but she also released a collection of hazy, ethereal reworkings later in the year under the title Sunday Self, and… you guessed it… just as good!

> Listen here! <

Tracks –

Yseult – ‘BAD BOY’

Cheïma: There are not many artists as talented as Yseult that can write about sadness, love, melancholy, heartbreaks as well as she can.

This song reunites all of this and will become the soundtrack of your slow afternoons.

> Listen here! <

Rina Sawayama – ‘Chosen Family’

Claire: Taken from one of the most criminally underrated albums of 2020, this track is stunning – not just in context but in production and lyricism.

It’s deeply moving, for both artist and listener alike. Speaking on its release to NME Rina said: “I dedicate this song to my queer friends who I now consider family – it’s essentially a big thank you to them, as I love them so much and I genuinely don’t think I would be alive right now if it weren’t for them.”

It is the epitome of finding light in darkness and (as an added bonus) her performance for the 2020 Attitude Awards was simply breath-taking.

> Listen here! <

Sevdaliza – ‘Gole Bi Goldoon

Cheïma: When I stumbled across Sevdaliza, it was love at first sight (she almost made it to album of the year) – this is the most beautiful song I have ever listened. She holds so much power and emotions that it still leaves me speechless.

N/B: this is a cover of an old Persian song by Googoosh.

> Listen here! <

Gemma Dunleavy – ‘Up De Flats’

Claire: An ode to inner-city Dublin, this is Gemma at her finest. ‘Up De Flats’ is ultimately a celebration of community, an appreciation for the place and people you grow up with. Sonically, we have delicate, airy harp over a garage-esque beat (reminiscent of early Streets), what’s not to love!

It also helps that Gemma seems like an abso lovely person, and hey – if we ever take Bloom Sesh on the road to Dublin, you best believe we’ll be hitting her up.

> Listen here! <

Samia ‘Is There Something In The Movies?’

Cheïma: Again, another one that could have been on Albums of 2020 list, but I had to make a choice. This song introduced me to Samia and my first reaction was “phew, finally something good in 2020!”.

It is poetic, soft, and will warm your heart.

> Listen here! <

Biig Piig – ‘Switch’

Claire: HOLY BOP! An instant classic, and funnily enough my top listened to song of 2020.

I love the D&B feel to this one! Turning its back on the woozy, hazy vibe of Biig Piig’s earlier tracks, ‘Switch’ was something I didn’t expect. Still retaining her whispery vocals but introducing this hypnotic bassline – it’s magic.

(I could have also picked ‘Feels Right’, but shh… don’t tell anyone I put a sneaky extra track up in here)

> Listen here! <

Well there you have it! We may want to forget 2020, but there was a lot of great music released – particularly from women and people of marginalised genders. We have no doubt 2021 will be the same (ノ ͡♥ ‿ ͡♥)ノ

Pssssssssst… are you ready for Bloom Sesh, January 2021? Collaboration announcements coming very soon!!

Keen to know more about Bloom Sessions?

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