Deciding our albums of the year between us and all of our writers was one hell of a task (come back Friday to see our full list), so we’ve kept it simple for songs. Each of our editors has picked a bunch of tracks and we’ve mixed them all up in no particular order. Below you will find a variety of genres, styles and musicians. Maybe you’ll find yourself reminiscing over your favourite song of the year, or perhaps you might find your new favourite tune of 2018…
Sorry – Starstruck (Jake‘s pick)
Perfectly wonky and delightfully sordid – even the sound of phlegm can’t derail the London quartet’s wiry juggernaut (if anything it’s a selling point).
Snail Mail – Pristine (Joe‘s pick)
The undisputed melodramatic heartbreak banger of the year, Pristine bursts with raw feeling and infatuation-nostalgia.
M.I.C – Qway (Elli‘s pick)
Intense and eye-opening personal stories over a delicately fresh beat, UK rap like you’ve never appreciated before. (If you don’t believe me, JME just retweeted his latest freestyle sooooo)
Nobody – Mitski (Sharissa‘s pick)
For all the lonely sadgirls&bois™ who need to dance out their despair.
Samaritans – IDLES (Tom‘s pick)
The somewhat less obvious diamond in the breakout album of the year, Idles take aim at toxic masculinity and place the microscope firmly on the irrational and damaging gender roles still perpetuated in the 21st century.
The Orielles – Bobbi’s Second World (Joe‘s pick)
A funk powerhouse of a single that bursts with creativity and surprises you at every corner.
Aries – SAYONARA (Elli‘s pick)
Stunning production perfects this complex yet universal beat. It’s definitely the song I’ve repeated the most in the last 6 months which is probably why I can’t explain it
Tints (ft. Kendrick Lamar) – Anderson. Paak (Sharissa‘s pick)
ANDERSON.PAAK AND KENDRICK FREAKING LAMAR.
Lewsberg – The Smile (Jake‘s pick)
The Dutch group masterfully knit guitar lines back and forth under deadpan humour with a talent beyond their years. ‘The Smile’ leaves me grinning every time.
Tune-Yards – Heart Attack (Tom‘s pick)
An album too readily ignored by the end of year lists of 2018. Heart Attack shows Tune-Yards reject their typical off-kilter dance in favour of more accessible arrangements, and in turn stake a strong claim for first all-out banger of 2018.
Okay Kaya – Dance With U (Elli‘s pick)
“Do you dance like you fuck? Or do you dance like you make love?”, Kaya questions in one of her many deeply personal yet drastically honest tracks. (Try out IUD too)
Prayer Song – Noname (Sharissa‘s pick)
A lyrical masterpiece that tackles issues of race and police brutality with artistic finesse.
WWWater – Screen (Jake‘s pick)
If not the best song of 2018, ‘Screen’ is by far the best song to feature the word ‘masturbate’ for a good long while. Descending synths and erratic percussion combine with peculiar and filthy lyrics.
IDLES – Danny Nedelko (Joe‘s pick)
A genuinely inspiring and uplifting celebration of immigrants. At a time of fear and disunion, Danny Nedelko stands quite simply as an expression of love.
Psychic Data – TVAM (Tom‘s pick)
Imposing terminator-like industrialism swarms from the outset. The title track and indeed the immediate statement piece proves TVAM is wasting no time on this impressive debut.
BC Camplight – I’m Desperate (Jake‘s pick)
Acidic chaos in a hellish storm, ‘I’m Desperate’ is an ominous anthem for the disenfranchised. Stay spooky, BC.
Berry Blacc – Places (Elli‘s pick)
Underrated Manchester MC discusses the reality of a place depending on your race, even when he’s dealing with the fucking GMP. That’s real.
Kali Uchis ft. Bootsy Collins & Tyler the Creator – After The Storm (Sharissa‘s pick)
The suavest song about self-empowerment you’ll hear this year.
Peggy Gou – It Makes You Forget (Itgehane) (Joe‘s pick)
A very simple house tune, but one that oozes with feeling. Casually sleek vocals and unelaborated instrumentation, but so understatedly funky.
Django Django – In Your Beat (Tom‘s pick)
A brief jaunt away from indie art-pop into electronic dance for Django Django saw them deliver an album peppered with a few misses but largely excusable given the provision of this uber-catchy dance influenced romp.
Hit Sale (ft Romeo Elvis) – Therapie TAXI (Sharissa‘s pick)
French rap-pop is a bop.
Hobo Johnson – Peach Scone (Elli‘s pick)
Starting off as a simple live video titled as an “NPR Tiny Desk Concert”, Peach Scone immediately became a viral hit and sent Hobo Johnson & the Lovemakers into the stratosphere from this simple but passionate performance about NOT BEING SO ALOOOONE!
The 1975 – Love It If We Made It (Jake‘s pick)
I listened to this song on loop for 2 hours a month ago. It’s so trite it’s perfect and so anxious it’s intoxicating.
Scarborough Warning – FEHM (Tom‘s pick)
Leeds’ latest post-punk pioneers raise the bar with a full frontal dive bomb into sweeping electronics and melodic hooks, and see the band producing a certified synthesizer soiree.
Maggie Rogers – Falling Water (Joe‘s pick)
Lovely imagery and audible heartache makes this one of the best written and most believable pop songs of the year.