Twentytwo in Blue

Sunflower Bean - Twentytwo in Blue
Critic Score
Based on 23 reviews
2018 Ratings: #333 / 737
User Score
Based on 114 ratings
2018 Ratings: #651
March 23, 2018 / Release Date
LP / Format
Mom+Pop / Label
Pop Rock, Indie Pop / Genres
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With any justice, this’ll be the album that catapults them into being recognised as one of the most important artists in the game.
Northern Transmissions

Though they definitely show where they’re pulling from on this record, it rarely holds them back from making some of the best rock music around.

There’s a chemistry at work here between the band members that creates fizzing pop-rock; it’s more instantly attractive than their well-received first album ‘Human Ceremony’.
The Telegraph

The focus is always on the smart, economical, classically constructed songs, boasting memorable verses, catchy choruses, intriguing lyrics and peppered with tremendous instrumental breaks.

The Line of Best Fit

Though much is often said about Sunflower Bean’s sounds of the past, Twenty Two In Blue is an impressive reflection of their formative years and a place to start talking about their future.

The Skinny

This is a record made by people who you sense are full of all of the possibilities of the world, looking to cram it all in and make some fine music as a soundtrack. They've done a pretty great job so far.


The follow-up does just what Human Ceremony did, but more so. And better.


All in all, Twentytwo in Blue spills over with well-crafted songs and sumptuous performances.

The Guardian
They have not shed their skins entirely. There are still shades of the Velvet Underground, shoegaze and dreamily psychedelic 60s balladry. But this is a convincing realignment from a band whose fears of the future have coincided with the euphoria of musical liberation.
In leaving the mythical landscape of adolescence behind, Sunflower Bean have found a maturity and a balance between lyrics and melody that infatuates. Though they sometimes still miss, 'Twentytwo In Blue' stakes out the loss of innocence that comes with growing up, and it does it beautifully.
Recorded in a wire-strewn basement, ‘Human Ceremony’ was hardly a flawless debut, but the band’s real promise shone when they pushed their ideas to the realm of unencumbered, sprinting-before-learning-to-walk inventiveness. The follow-up, a more considered harnessing of all that raw potential, shows just what they’re capable of.

Everything on Twentytwo in Blue fits together perfectly; from the songs to the sounds to the performances, it's indie rock and pop at their thoughtful, searching, sweet, and punchy best.


Sunflower Bean have once again created an album that is unique and fresh, while still keeping to a tradition that evokes some of the greatest achievements is modern music history.

Consequence of Sound

The 11 songs on Twentytwo in Blue stomp and seethe, while aching for humanity’s future.

A.V. Club
It may be derivative, but it’s never weak: SunflowerBean has channeled the most appealing elements of those past decades’ pop music and retained a sprightly, affectionate touch.
God Is in the TV

Although Sunflower Bean’s Twentytwo In Blue won’t be the most original LP of the year, it’s undeniably significant, as it’s an insightful guide book for the older generation in understanding how the youth feel today.

No Ripcord

Sunflower Bean may struggle to maintain that glam rock posture, but they sure have gotten better at writing wholesome power pop songs.

Under The Radar

A well-rounded and ultimately engaging listen, Twentytwo in Blue is (hopefully) just the start of the line for Sunflower Bean as they look to develop into one of this generation's most interesting and chameleonic indie rock acts.


If you could focus-group the platonic ideal for "lovable rock music for 2018" into existence, it would sound and look a lot like Twentytwo in Blue.

The Observer
This follow-up to a promising but reticent debut shows the trio won’t die wondering if they could’ve crossed over. Lead singer Julia Cumming is higher in the mix, the songwriting is sharper, and the fuzzy atmospherics have been dialled down and drums toughened up.
Spectrum Culture

If Twentytwo in Blue is any indication, Sunflower Bean seems destined to become a pretty good rock band and not much more than that. While they are often exciting, they lack a certain sort of depth. Perhaps that is something that will come to them with age, but for the time being, Twentytwo in Blue is a pretty good party that fades quickly into the recesses of the mind.

Loud and Quiet
Having a great record collection and knowing what to do with it are two different things; sadly, Sunflower Bean are lacking in the latter.
Drowned in Sound
Yawn. Whenever I listen to this album, I imagine the kids of Sunflower Bean huddled in their snug apartment, brainstorming a checklist. Quick – what styles and themes can we rip off that will please the most people?
It's alright, but that 40 minutes sure seemed like 40 years.
At 22 and not so blue, Sunflower Bean make a decisive step, with their second album, towards the title of the new Fleetwood Mac.
But who needs the new Fleetwood Mac anyway?
This is a real gem that I unfortunately overlooked earlier in the year. Besides a couple of tracks, the album is consistently at a very high quality. The songs some how manage to be both beautiful and catchy, something I feel is hard for many artists. This is also one of the few records so far in the year that I can listen to all the way through and rarely be bored/ have my mind drift. There are a couple of points where I felt it got a bit dull and repetitive, but I firmly believe that the rest ... read more
Drifting guitars, a sweet singing harmonization and old-school pop tempos is exposed on Twentytwo at its best of its own. There are out many projects with the same vibe and it would be loose it as going on the time. But this particular release has its uniqueness that makes a big difference among others.
FAVS: Burn It, Twentytwo, Memoria, Puppet Strings, Only a Moment, Human For
LEAST FAV: Crisis Fest
Between good songs and fillers songs which sometimes just look the same, this album walks silently in the regular line.
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Decade Lists

#50/NME (2010s)

Track List

  1. Burn It
  2. I Was a Fool
  3. Twentytwo
  4. Crisis Fest
  5. Memoria
  6. Puppet Strings
  7. Only a Moment
  8. Human For
  9. Any Way You Like
  10. Sinking Sands
  11. Oh No, Bye Bye
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Added on: January 13, 2018