As 2018 is coming to a close, we look back one last time. These are the 50 best pop singles of the year all described in (roughly) one sentence! Scroll down for a Spotify playlist with all 50 songs in it!
50. Clean Bandit & Marina feat. Luis Fonsi – Baby
For Clean Bandit ‘Baby’ turned out to be their least successful single in ages, but how can you not love this latin infused bop with Marina’s gorgeous vocals?
49. Janelle Monae – I Like That
Janelle Monáe rocked this year with her outstanding album Dirty Computer and ‘I Like That’ is a deliciously catchy R&B tune with a undeniably strong personal message!
48. Troye Sivan & Jónsi – Revelation
Other than his Bloom album, Australian pop star Troye Sivan teamed up with Jónsi for the heartbreaking, but absolutely gorgeous soundtrack for the movie Boy Erased.
47. Sigrid – Sucker Punch
Norwegian pop starlet Sigrid dropped an EP this year, but definitely left more of an impression with the absolute pop banger ‘Sucker Punch’, which is the lead single of her upcoming debut album!
46. AURORA – Forgotten Love
Another Norwegian pop singer-songwriter, AURORA, impressed us this year with her incredible sophomore album and ‘Forgotten Love’ was certainly one of the many highlights on this beauty.
45. Jessie Ware – Overtime
UK pop star Jessie Ware finally returned to her house infused beginnings and released the merciless banger ‘Overtime’. More of this in 2019 please!
44. Shawn Mendes – Lost In Japan
Shawn Mendes had the biggest year in his career so far and he showed us he can pull off sexy pop with a funky rhythm just as well on hit single ‘Lost In Japan’.
43. BØRNS & Lana Del Rey – God Save Our Young Blood
BØRNS and Lana Del Rey started the year with the duet ‘God Save Our Young Blood’ and the track is a testament of everything that is so awesome about both these artists.
42. Say Lou Lou – Golden Child
Say Lou Lou’s comeback might have ended up under the radar a little bit too much, but I will never let anyone deny the brilliance of the hook of their single ‘Golden Child’. Not on my watch!
41. Mariah Carey – GTFO
Mariah Carey launched this insanely catchy, but oh so sassy contemporary R&B tune when nobody was still counting on a successful comeback. Triumphant once more!
40. Calvin Harris & Dua Lipa – One Kiss
In large parts of Europe, ‘One Kiss’ by Calvin Harris and Dua Lipa became one of the biggest hits of the year and it ain’t hard to understand the appeal of this infectious mix of pop and house.
39. Robyn – Missing U
Robyn finally acknowledged how much we have been missing her when she returned to form with this gorgeous piece of smooth electronic pop.
38. James Bay – Wild Love
UK singer-songwriter James Bay completely rebranded himself this year and definitely for the better if you ask me. ‘Wild Love’ is such a sultry, yet hypnotic ballad!
37. Years & Years – All For You
Years & Years won the title of A Bit of Pop Music’s best pop album of 2018 with Palo Santo and ‘All For You’ is definitely one of the highlights on there. Synth pop heaven!
36. Christina Aguilera & Demi Lovato – Fall In Line
Two of the most powerful voices in pop today came together to sing a strong worded ballad about women’s rights. What’s not to love?
35. Dua Lipa & BlackPink – Kiss and Make Up
Dua Lipa ended her year full of collaborations with an absolute banger of a pop song together with Korean girlband BlackPink. What did we do to deserve this flawless chorus?
34. CHVRCHES – Get Out
CHVRCHES’s comeback single ‘Get Out’ is one of those pop masterpieces that unfolds slowly, but once you ‘get’ it, you can never unhear its beauty again!
33. Dua Lipa – Want To
We’re already on Dua’s third spot in this top 50! To be fair, the irresistible way she says ‘I’ll dance if I want to’ should have been enough to land her a spot in the list with this song, but it helps that the production and melodies are fabulous too.
32. Rita Ora & Liam Payne – For You
The soundtrack for a Fifty Shades of Grey movie is never not successful, especially not if it is a well written, exquisitely produced pop tune for the masses performed by Rita Ora and Liam Payne.
31. Clean Bandit & Demi Lovato – Solo
For ‘Solo’, Clean Bandit thought out of the box, but within their own sonic universe. Demi Lovato’s delivery is the cherry on top of this tune that might well be the most instantly catchy of the year.
30. MNEK – Tongue
British producer and pop artist MNEK delivered us his best track yet with ‘Tongue’, a sexy bop about telling your love interest too early on that you love him. Again; what a bop!
29. Nina Nesbitt – Loyal To Me
Nina Nesbitt surprisingly recorded a track inspired by early noughties R&B and such a good one as well! Also, ladies and gents, take notes of her hints when your lover might actually be a ‘f*ckboy’.
28. Ariana Grande – Breathin
The first (of many) Ariana tracks in this list! A personal story presented over a lush production with heavenly vocals! Just keep ‘breathin’ in 2019 Ariana, it can only get better from here!
27. Ina Wroldsen – Mine
Singer, songwriter, producer and generally awesome pop star Ina Wroldsen from Norway captivated me completely with this insanely catchy but at the same time painful heartbreak bop on which she asks her partner if he is ‘hers’ or ‘mine’.
26. Rhys – Maybe I Will Learn
Swedisch upcoming pop star Rhys surprised us all at the start of the year with the utterly gorgeous soulful ballad ‘Maybe I Will Learn’. That voice!
25. Dotter – Heatwave
Dotter made our summer even hotter with her outstanding single ‘Heatwave’. She is still terribly underrated, because that chorus would have easily smashed on an international star’s album.
24. Marshmello & Anne-Marie – FRIENDS
Marshmello and Anne-Marie dropped one of the sassiest pop recordings of the year. Needless to say I absolutely adore it!
23. Saara Aalto – Monsters
Finnish Saara Aalto’s Eurovision adventure might not have ended how she (or I) had it in mind, but ‘Monsters’ is still a bop and a half and you will all deal.
22. Lana Del Rey – Mariners Apartment Complex
Lana Del Rey is working towards the release of a new album early 2019 and the expectations are high thanks to the soaring chorus of the ballad ‘Mariners Apartment Complex’.
21. Florence + the Machine – Hunger
While Florence + the Machine’s latest album was mostly a more understated affair, she did not shy away from big vocals, bombastic production and larger than life melody lines on ‘Hunger’. Needless to say I am addicted!
20. Ariana Grande – Thank U, Next
Ariana Grande surprised the whole world when she came back with a brand new single just a couple of months after dropping an album, but before we all knew it everyone was addicted to the pop brilliance that is ‘Thank U, Next’. Recordbreaking and deserving of it!
19. Dotter – Cry
Dotter’s Melodifestivalen adventure ended way earlier than it should have, but her modern power ballad ‘Cry’ is still flawless!
18. Billie Eilish – When The Party’s Over
Billie Eilish completely crushed our hearts with the stunning stripped back song ‘When The Party’s Over’. If that is what this girl can do at the age of 16, I can’t even comprehend what the future holds for her and us pop fans.
17. Kylie Minogue – Dancing
Kylie Minogue came back swinging/line dancing this year with a country infused dance-pop sound and she executed it so well! First single ‘Dancing’ is an earworm!
16. Eleni Foureira – Fuego
Eleni Foureira might have just missed out on winning the Eurovision Song Contest, but her smoking hot bop ‘Fuego’ turned out to be the biggest hit after the event!
15. Silk City & Dua Lipa – Electricity
Dua Lipa teamed up with Diplo and Mark Ronson under the name Silk City and the three of them brought us the glorious ‘Electricity’. I can never listen to this song only once.
14. Florence + the Machine – Big God
Florence + the Machine entered new territory with the Jamie xx co-written song ‘Big God’; a dynamic composition and production with an expressive, unexpected vocal delivery.
13. Mabel feat. Not3s – Fine Line
Pop star Mabel delivered us the goods on her single ‘Fine Line’ that offers hooks for days and days. Can she not just re-release it in 2019 so it finally becomes the international smash it deserves to be?
12. Avril Lavigne – Head Above Water
Avril Lavigne made her big comeback with the heartfelt ballad ‘Head Above Water’ on which she sings about battling Lyme disease. Stunner of a ballad!
11. Halsey – Without Me
Halsey surprised everyone with releasing the non-album single ‘Without Me’ which proved to be her best and most successful solo work so far. The raw emotion in this tune grabs you by the throat.
10. Ina Wroldsen – Sea
Ina Wroldsen dove into Norwegian mythology for her EP and started the campaign with the mesmerizing, fairytale like track ‘Sea’. This needs to become the soundtrack to something icy and cool!
09. Kim Petras – Heart To Break
Although she worked with a problematic producer that we are not going to name here, Kim Petras delivered some absolute bops in 2018 of which Heart To Break’ is without a doubt the biggest. A massive tune!
08. Mark Ronson & Miley Cyrus – Nothing Breaks Like A Heart
Mark Ronson and Miley Cyrus waited until the very last bit of the year and then decided to snatch a spot in our top 10 with the incredible ‘Nothing Breaks Like A Heart’. I want to hear more like this from both Mark and Miley!
07. James Bay – Pink Lemonade
James Bay’s reinvention could not get any better than the track ‘Pink Lemonade’. The uptempo rock song has a glam vibe about it. It is sexy, catchy and effortlessly cool!
06. Lykke Li – Deep End
Lykke Li returned with a hiphop and trap inspired sound on her latest album. It all worked best on the hypnotic single ‘Deep End’. The chorus is unusual, but without a doubt one of the strongest of the year!
05. Billie Eilish & Khalid – Lovely
Billie Eilish and Khalid sound fragile on this stunning, atmospheric, string and piano driven ballad that describes what it is like to battle depression. Goosebumps every single time!
04. Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow
The all consuming chorus and Lady Gaga’s immensely powerful vocals make this track into an instant classic. I swear I will start a riot if ‘Shallow’ doesn’t at least get an Oscar or a few Grammy’s thrown at it.
03. Ariana Grande – No Tears Left To Cry
Ariana Grande’s comeback with ‘No Tears Left To Cry’ was a moment! The ethereal track with an edgy production, absolutely beautiful soaring chorus and some of her best vocal performances so far, deserved every little bit of success it had.
02. Troye Sivan – My My My!
Troye Sivan kicked off the year with the brilliant 80s inspired synth pop of ‘My My My!’. The track is a testament of his personal and musical growth and there was only one song that topped this in 2018…
01. Ariana Grande – God Is A Woman
Of course it had to be Ariana. She made us all believe that god is a woman on a thrilling ride that balances between soul, pop, R&B and hiphop. She hits all the big notes and slays the hell out of the attitude in the lyrics. In 2018’s pop world, God definitely was a woman and her name is Ariana!