2018 was a curious yr for pop music. Different genres (most notably hip-hop and nation) took over the charts, whereas the age of the all-conquering period appears to be nicely and really behind us. With heavy-hitters like Beyoncé, Rihanna, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, Woman Gaga and Adele technically off-cycle, nobody dominated the scene. As an alternative, Ex-Acts battled Fifth Concord alumni and the standard DJs for pop supremacy. And within the course of, a whole lot of nice music was made. You simply needed to look slightly additional afield to seek out it.
A lot of the yr’s greatest pop was imported from Europe and Australia, whereas Latin America proved to be a real powerhouse with a military of breakout stars. After which, there’s the rise and rise of Okay-Pop. (Right here’s our listing of 2018’s greatest Okay-Pop songs and albums). A bit nearer to residence, a bunch of newcomers caught my consideration with their manic disregard for style and emotional honesty. Take a deep breath and dive into my listing of 2018’s greatest singles under. Simply don’t pay an excessive amount of consideration to the rankings.
100. “Tieduprightnow” — Parcels
The Berlin-based Aussies take us again to the ’70s with this disco-laced, blissfully mellow tune.
99. “Tongue” — MNEK
After conquering the world of songwriting, MNEK lastly got here into his personal as a pop star with the attractive, slinky “Tongue.”
98. “You’ve Got Your Whole Life Ahead Of You Baby” — IDER
IDER’s breakthrough single is the right soundtrack to the emotional breakdown that inevitably accompanies your Return of Saturn.
97. “Me And Michael” — MGMT
MGMT sort of misplaced their approach after the mega-success of their debut LP, however “Me And Michael” was a powerful return to type.
96. “First Impression” — Amanda Tenfjord
One among 2018’s most enjoyable newcomers, Amanda Tenfjord gained me over with this biting account of an ill-fated preliminary encounter.
95. “Believer” — CYN
Signed to Katy Perry’s Unsub Data, CYN slinky “Believer” evokes her label head’s knack for pop hooks with a splash of one thing a bit of darker.
94. “Sunflower” — Submit Malone & Swae Lee
Say what you want about Submit Malone, however he has the Midas Contact in relation to hip-hop/pop hybrids with mass attraction.
93. “Kream” — Iggy Azalea feat. Tyga
This raunchy banger shall be enjoying in strip golf equipment for many years to return. Her thoughts.
92. “Shotgun” — George Ezra
The deep-voiced Brit landed a worldwide hit with “Shotgun.” Certainly, it’s solely a matter of time earlier than the US succumbs to the track’s summery appeal.
91. “On Fire” — Morgan Saint
Alt-leaning, multi-layered electronica with angelic vocals and large hooks, “On Fire” cements Morgan Saint’s standing as a pop drive to be reckoned with.
90. “Mockingbird” — Ruston Kelly
Falling someplace between Chris Stapleton and Bruce Springsteen, Ruston Kelly’s melancholy “Mockingbird” heralds the arrival of a serious expertise.
89. “Lay With Me” — Phantoms feat. Vanessa Hudgens
Vanessa Hudgens made a welcome return to pop music with a function on Phantoms’ enjoyable and fizzy “Lay With Me.”
88. “Ohio” — Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness
The veteran singer/songwriter paperwork an unusually bittersweet street journey on this shifting anthem.
87. “Sugar & Spice” — Hatchie
Australian newcomer Hatchie exhibits actual aptitude for ’90s-channeling shoe-gaze on “Sugar & Spice.”
86. “Ocean” — Martin Garrix feat. Khalid
An aesthetic membership anthem with a memorably mellow drop that deserved to be an entire lot greater than it was.
85. “All The Ways” — Meghan Trainor
Sugary candy synth-pop that might have been wildly praised by blogs and championed by The Gays within the arms of another artist.
84. “Boo’d Up” — Ella Mai
Arguably the breakthrough artist of 2018, Ella Mai breathed new life into basic R&B with “Boo’d Up.”
83. “Take Cover” — Jordie Eire
An Aussie teenager simply occurred to supply the most effective membership tracks of 2018. Jordie Eire is certainly One To Watch in 2019.
82. “Tequila” — Dan + Shay
Nashville duo Dan + Shay hits the candy spot between nation and pop on this boozy ode to misplaced love.
81. “Changed My Mind” — Tove Styrke
The Swede’s minimalist strategy accentuates each beat, lyric and hook, proving (as soon as and for all) that much less is extra. Take heed to “Changed My Mind” for proof.
80. “Love You Most” — Laura Jean Anderson
LA songstress Laura Jean Anderson exhibits off her highly effective pipes and knack for delivering emotional intestine punches on this soulful ballad.
79. “Solo” — Clear Bandit & Demi Lovato
Demi Lovato had a tough 2018, however she someway discovered the time to ship one of many yr’s greatest floorfillers. The mildly outrageous “Solo” goes more durable than it has any proper to.
78. “Emotion” — Astrid S
Norway’s princess of pop hits a uncooked nerve on this introspective, weak ditty a few dysfunctional relationship.
77. “Youngblood” — 5 Seconds Of Summer time and Angus & Julia Stone
A music so catchy and common that it really works simply in addition to a stripped-back ballad (as Angus & Julia Stone’s clever cowl proves).
76. “Lilo” — The Japanese Home
Strikingly serene dream-pop concerning the heat cocoon of a brand new relationship.
75. “My My My!” — Troye Sivan
Troye Sivan channels Michael Jackson on the spotlight of Bloom and delivers one in every of his greatest singles.
74. “Faking It” — Sasha Sloan
Going by means of the motions in a relationship has not often been illustrated with such brutal precision.
73. “Be Alright” — Dean Lewis
Australia’s Dean Lewis wears his (damaged) coronary heart on his sleeve on this stripped-back, Spotify-conquering breakup anthem.
72. “Baby” — Bishop Briggs
Bishop Briggs reveals her obsession with dangerous boys on this rollicking, fucks-free jaunt. Radio dropped the ball on this.
71. “Love Lies” — Khalid & Normani
A star-making sluggish jam that proves Normani properly and really has what it takes to be a solo sensation.
70. “Light On” — Maggie Rogers
Maggie Rogers involves grips with the pitfalls of fame on this lilting mantra doubling as a pop track.
69. “Accelerate” — Christina Aguilera feat. Ty Dolla $ign & 2 Chainz
Christina Aguilera’s entire Liberation period deserved higher, however the hook-filled, rambling lead single was notably slept-on.
68. “Lovely” — Billie Eilish & Khalid
There are two takeaways from this hit duet. Specifically that Khalid is the undisputed king of collaborations and Billie Eilish is indisputably the actual deal.
67. “Head Above Water” — Avril Lavigne
A deeply private, faith-driven pop/rock anthem about overcoming Lyme Illness, “Head Above Water” kicked off Avril Lavigne’s comeback in type.
66. “Funny Business” — Alice Merton
Germany’s Alice Merton popped up on my greatest singles of 2017 countdown with the inescapable “No Roots.” In 2018, she proved it was no fluke by dropping the equally quirky (and catchy) “Funny Business.”
65. “Shallow” — Woman Gaga & Bradley Cooper
Uncooked, heartfelt and oddly operatic, “Shallow” was the breakout hit from A Star Is Born with excellent cause.
64. “Wild” — Hugo Helmig
Good, old style Euro-Pop with an enormous, frothy refrain is what Denmark’s Hugo Helmig delivers on “Wild.”
63. “Phone Me” — Tia Gostelow
Indie-pop queen Tia Gostelow dropped one of many breeziest bops of 2018 with the refreshingly unfastened and informal “Phone Me.”
62. “1999” — Charli XCX & Troye Sivan
A lot of the pop-culture references in “1999” don’t have anything to do with that particular yr and the collaborators are a minimum of 20 years too younger to be reminiscing concerning the 20th century. However who actually cares when the music is that this fucking good?
61. “All The Pretty Girls” — Vera Blue
Australia’s Vera Blue trades in alt-centric electronica for nostalgic synth-pop on this sensible bop.
60. “I Don’t Even Smoke Weed” — Empress Of
Empress Of is so snug in her new relationship that the often straight-laced singer is open to getting stoned. Courting objectives.
59. “GTFO” — Mariah Carey
Introducing a make-or-break album with an expletive-filled, low-key groove was a danger that finally paid good-looking dividends for Mariah Carey.
58. “Delicate” — Taylor Swift
Popularity didn’t actually do it for me, however “Delicate” is proof that Taylor Swift’s uncanny knack for penning good pop songs hasn’t abandoned her.
57. “I Like It” — Cardi B, Dangerous Bunny & J Balvin
Cardi B made the leap from rap contender to throne-occupying Queen with this genre-mashing banger.
56. “Hunger” — Florence + The Machine
The largest pop second on Excessive As Hope additionally occurs to be probably the most trustworthy and disarmingly poetic.
55. “Make Me Feel” — Janelle Monáe
Funk is alive and nicely (and sexier than ever) within the very succesful arms of Janelle Monáe.
54. “Imaginary Friend” — MØ
Each track on MØ’s strange Endlessly Neverland is a mini-masterpiece, however this oddball bed room anthem might be probably the most accessible.
53. “Paper Rain” — Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness
A final-ditch effort to climb out of debt by way of the tables in Las Vegas involves life in Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness’ punchiest single thus far.
52. “Heart To Break” — Kim Petras
Kim Petras dropped banger after banger in 2018. They have been all good, however “Heart To Break” soars just a little greater because of perky manufacturing and a killer refrain.
51. “Pictures Of Girls” — Wallows
The distinctly West Coast, blurry indie-pop of Wallows’ “Pictures Of Girls” stood out like a sore thumb in 2018 for all the appropriate causes.
50. “Better Now” — Cloves
A brilliantly-written monitor that captures the unstable dynamics of a fucked-up relationship in probably the most vibrant, reasonable method attainable.
49. “What Keeps You Up At Night” — Dan + Shay
A shamelessly romantic, pop-tinged tune with infinite replay worth, “What Keeps You Up At Night” represents every little thing good about trendy nation.
48. “Ashes” — Celine Dion
10 years in the past, “Ashes” would have been a worldwide primary hit. In immediately’s pop local weather, it barely made a ripple. Which is legal provided that it stands toe-to-toe with Celine Dion’s greatest ballads.
47. “Bad Dreams” — Pete Yorn & Scarlett Johansson
When you informed me at the start of 2018 that certainly one of my favourite songs would come from Scarlett Johansson, I might have in all probability believed you. As a result of we live within the Upside Down. The actor’s indie-pop reunion with Pete Yorn is a punchy, refreshingly weary take a look at very grownup issues.
46. “Blue Sea, Red Sea” — Billie Marten
Dreamy folk-pop from one of many UK’s most underrated skills, Billie Marten’s “Blue Sea, Red Sea” washes over you want a heat tub.
45. “Nobody” — Mitski
With Be The Cowboy, Mitski was formally acknowledged as a pop genius. The good beginning place for newcomers? Look no additional than “Nobody,” a delicately-layered anthem about loneliness for the Ceaselessly Alone crowd.
44. “Body” — Loud Luxurious feat. Brando
Simply once you thought there was no escaping down-tempo electro, Canada’s Loud Luxurious dropped “Body” and introduced the enjoyable again to bop music.
43. “Groceries” — Mallrat
Mallrat’s “Groceries” is the most effective electro-pop music about shopping for meals. Sure, even higher than Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Store.”
42. “Wonder Woman” — Kacey Musgraves
Kacey Musgraves speaks her piece with wit and homespun knowledge on this remarkably well-written buzz single.
41. “Focus” — Charli XCX
So prolific that it’s exhausting to maintain monitor of her actions, Charli XCX dropped her greatest single since “Boom Clap” with the attractive, slinky “Focus.” If she ever releases one other album, this ought to be on it.
40. “Taki Taki” — DJ Snake, Selena Gomez, Ozuna & Cardi B
460 million Spotify streams and 850 million YouTube views. Think about how huge the Latin-club crossover of 2018 might have been with radio help and a few performances?
39. “I Said Hi” — Amy Shark
Love Monster was one among my favourite albums of final yr and “I Said Hi” completely sums up Amy Shark’s ballsy attraction — huge hooks, a fuck-you angle and one hell of a refrain.
38. “Meant To Be” — Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line
Bebe Rexha actually dropped one of many largest country-pop crossovers of all time after which went again to recording R&B-tinged bangers prefer it by no means occurred. Legends solely.
37. “In My Blood” — Shawn Mendes
Shawn Mendes all the time had the expertise, he was simply missing the signature track to nudge him into Grammy-worthy territory. The Canadian pop star lastly discovered it with “In My Blood.”
36. “Without Me” — Halsey
Am I a down-low Halsey stan? The pop star dropped greater than her justifiable share of memorable bops in 2018 together with the radio-saving “Without Me.” She’s due for an enormous 2019.
35. “Have It All” — Jason Mraz
Two Spirit singer/songwriter Jason Mraz unleashed the feel-good anthem of 2018. Sadly, we have been all too depressed to take pleasure in it.
34. “Lost Without You” — Freya Ridings
Freya Ridings has the voice of Adele and pen of Joni Mitchell. Take heed to “Lost Without You” for affirmation.
33. “La Cintura” — Alvaro Soler
Alvaro Soler conquered Europe with “La Cintura,” an absurdly catchy anthem about being a nasty dancer. It ought to have completed the identical within the States.
32. “Zu Dir” — LEA
Germany’s LEA was actually going by way of it on the moody “Leiser,” however she proves equally adept at loved-up pop on the hovering “Zu Dir.”
31. “Hearts Ain’t Gonna Lie” — Arlissa & Jonas Blue
Probably the greatest songs of 2018 arrived within the first week of January and nobody appeared to note. This sensible club-anthem ought to have been Arlissa’s calling card.
30. “1950” — King Princess
A queer love music for the ages and top-of-the-line debut singles in current reminiscence.
29. “Wait” — Maroon 5
It’s time to place some respect on Maroon 5’s identify! Many years into their profession, and the Adam Levine-fronted band continues to be churning out glowing radio fodder.
28. “Nothing Breaks Like A Heart” — Mark Ronson & Miley Cyrus
People-disco with flashings of nation courtesy of Miley Cyrus’ unmistakeable twang, Mark Ronson’s “Nothing Breaks Like A Heart” is a post-genre gem.
27. “Jump” — Julia Michaels feat. Trippie Redd
Julia Michaels has by no means launched a nasty track. In reality, most of them are stone-cold bops with sultry vocals and killer hooks. “Jump” is Exhibit A.
26. “Diane” — Cam
It talks a daring soul to write down a reply to the benchmark music for nation music (i.e. Dolly Parton’s “Jolene”). Cam did simply that, and gave some much-needed humanity to The Different Lady within the course of.
25. “Sin Pijama” — Becky G & Natti Natasha
A horny bop from two of Latin music’s largest stars was all the time going to be huge. I simply didn’t anticipate it to personal the summer time (a minimum of in LA) the best way it did.
24. “Electricity” — Silk Metropolis & Dua Lipa
Dua Lipa confirmed her standing as one in every of pop’s main women by becoming a member of Silk Metropolis (Mark Ronson and Diplo) on this euphoric, ’90s-channeling membership banger.
23. “Honey” — Robyn
“Missing U” missed the mark for me, however Robyn greater than made up for it with “Honey.” This throbbing banger has an impact on you that may solely be described as mildly obscene.
22. “Happier” — Marshmello & Bastille
Bastille reinvented themselves as membership kings in 2018 with this unusually gut-wrenching EDM function and one other killer collaboration with Seeb.
21. “Peach” — Broods
New label, new sound. Broods threw a number of genres right into a blender and got here up with a tasty deal with referred to as “Peach.”
20. “Sentimentale” — Mylene Farmer
France’s Queen of Pop throws it again to her ’80s hey-day on this enchanting, lovingly-crafted piece of synth-pop.
19. “Broken” — lovelytheband
The alt-pop crossover of the yr got here to us from lovelytheband . “Broken” will probably be bringing loners collectively for years to return.
18. “Clandestino” — Shakira & Maluma
Like Netflix and chill, Shakira and Maluma simply belong collectively. Whereas not as prompt as “Chantaje,” this attractive sluggish jam proved to be the last word grower.
17. “Be Your USA” — EASYFUN feat. liris
Wild and fantastic PC Music with an enormous, shiny pop-tastic refrain. What’s to not love?
16. “The Middle” — Zedd, Maren Morris & Gray
Each diva in pop auditioned to be on this track, which isn’t that shocking. From the primary pay attention, it was clear that Zedd had one thing very particular on his palms with “The Middle.”
15. “A No No” — Mariah Carey
“Snakes in the grass, it’s time to cut the lawn.” Sufficient stated.
14. “Eastside” — Benny Blanco, Halsey & Khalid
Benny Blanco’s artist venture acquired off to a flying begin with “Eastside,” a track with such legs that it outran all of the very-good singles that got here after it.
13. “Tiny Dancer” — Florence + The Machine
No offense, however that Elton John tribute album was a little bit of a bust. That’s with one obtrusive exception. Florence + The Machine reworked “Tiny Dancer” right into a sprawling, semi-orchestral ballad that holds its personal towards the unique.
12. “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” — Backstreet Boys
One of many catchiest songs of BSB’s lengthy and iconic profession. Legends solely.
11. “Hold My Girl” — George Ezra
“Shotgun” was the worldwide hit, however this soothing ballad is the last word showcase of George Ezra’s blissful baritone.
10. “Dancing” — Kylie Minogue
At first pay attention, “Dancing” is a kitsch country-pop monitor with a boot-scooting refrain. On nearer inspection, it’s a defiant mantra about dwelling life by yourself phrases.
9. “Clean Eyes” — SYML
SYML is understood for his stripped-back grooves, however this uptempo synth-pop anthem is harking back to The Killers circa Scorching Fuss. Beginning over has by no means sounded so invigorating.
eight. “APESHIT” — Beyoncé & JAY-Z
I want I favored Every thing Is Love greater than I do, however The Carters actually made some factors on the rowdy “APESHIT.” Now if they might kindly return to their respective solo careers.
7. “Fast Slow Disco” — St. Vincent
I really feel dangerous putting what is actually a remix so excessive on the record, however “Fast Slow Disco” (the pragmatically-titled uptempo overhaul of St. Vincent’s “Slow Disco”) is so dreamy and intoxicating that I simply couldn’t assist myself.
6. “5 Dollars” — Christine And The Queens
Based on the French pop star, this cute synth-pop anthem is about paying for intercourse. Which makes it even higher.
5. “People Get Old” — Lori McKenna
Lori McKenna writes songs about conditions and experiences that might make different artists crumble. Just like the gnawing realization that your mother and father are getting older and gained’t be round endlessly.
four. “Back To You” — Selena Gomez
After stretching the boundaries of pop on songs like “Bad Liar,” Selena Gomez retreated to safer floor on “Back To You.” Or did she? This can be a quirkily-structured tune with sprawling, confessional verses and a refrain that builds over the complete track. It’s additionally emotionally resonant in a method that the majority EDM-pop concoctions can solely dream of.
three. “Space Cowboy” — Kacey Musgraves
A tragic nation ballad with non-annoying wordplay and sufficient perception and coronary heart to fill any self-help e-book. “Space Cowboy” is the crowning jewel in Kacey Musgraves’ sensible Golden Hour.
2. “Touchstone” — Laura Jean
Australia’s Laura Jean constructed a loyal following with stripped-back people songs, however dabbles in kooky synth-pop on “Touchstone.” An unusually filter-free perception right into a thoughts of a lady in love, that is equally soothing and terrifying.
1. “Venice Bitch” — Lana Del Rey
“Mariner’s Apartment Complex” was good, however “Venice Bitch” is nice. No track in Lana Del Rey’s superb discography higher captures her much-imitated aesthetic or full disregard for guidelines, like this 10-minute fever dream.
What was your favourite single of 2018? Tell us under, or by hitting us up on Fb and Twitter!