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Texas Music Magazine's 22 Best Albums of 2022

There are 21 other albums on this list, all by artists who are by degrees or leaps and bounds much “bigger” than this humble young woman who probably feels like she’s putting on airs even telling people she writes songs. But the truth is, calling Jana Pochop a “songwriter” is like calling Gandalf a guy who can throw together a nice fireworks display for a birthday party. Pochop, who moved to Austin from Albuquerque in 2006, weaves words and melodies together with a dextrous intelligence that seems outright supernatural. There are eight songs on The Astronaut, and every one of them is packed to the bursting point with so many utterly brilliant observations and hairpin turns of phrase, you get dizzy just trying to keep up. Even harder is picking a favorite, but “Maps,” which likens the human heart to “hell on wheels” running “on sorcery and science,” pretty much marks the spot. RS

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