On Oct. 21, 2022, the song of the year finally dropped. Despite industry forecasts, the track didn’t come from noted pop girlies Carly Rae Jepsen or Taylor Swift; instead, the absolute banger of a club track came from one Nicholas Britell, on the soundtrack for Disney Plus’ Star Wars prequel Andor.
“Niamos! (Morlana Club Mix)” is a barn-burner, if barn could burn in a tight one minute and 41 seconds. Britell’s song debuted in episode 7 of Andor as Cassian — undercover with the instantly iconic moniker of Keef Girgo — wanders a boardwalk on the new beachy planet Niamos. The song is an instant hit, the sort of club mix that Star Wars hasn’t mustered in a minute, capturing the deep, moody unease and ambiguity of Cassian’s current situation in Space Florida beachfront while still flowing into the grander story.
(This is the sort of care and consideration one would expect from the man who’s crafted some incredible scores in his time, including Succession, Moonlight, If Beale Street Could Talk, and The Underground Railroad.)
Apologies to “Monster Mash” and “Werewolf Bar Mitzvah,” but this is the song of the season, and maybe the rest of the year. I suspect many a Thanksgiving dinner will be soundtracked by Britell’s thumping synths and piercing, discordant melodies, once the internet obliges by making a four-hour loop of this for families to play in the background. No doubt Mariah Carey’s Christmas bop will be fighting for airtime with Britell’s track on radio stations come December. The New Year’s Eve ball drop should be meticulously timed to the Morlana Club Mix.
We may have a hard time selling mass culture on this. Renaissance came out this year, of course; “Niamos!” will have stiff competition at the Grammys, should that awards body finally put some actual respect on Beyoncé’s name and give the artist her due. And not everyone is watching Andor yet, even though they should be. But with five episodes to go, including a season finale scheduled to drop just before Thanksgiving, there’s plenty of time for Britell to blow the roof off with another EDM ditty — and for “Niamos! (Morlana Club Mix)” to rule all our Spotify Wrappeds before the end of the year.