Let’s face it – there’s been some utter bangers this year!

It’s been difficult for us to narrow down our favourites, but we tried our best (and trust us: there’s some curveballs!)

20. BLACK HONEY – SOMEBODY BETTER

After being under the radar for the past few years, Brighton rockers Black Honey really came alive in 2017. Tracks such as ‘Dig’ and a headline tour in the Spring cemented them as one of the year’s successes. ‘Somebody Better’ epitomises what this band are all about; furious guitar chords herald the track’s arrival, Izzy B. Phillips’ voice sounds sublime and the video is indie arthouse but with added adrenaline. We expect even bigger things from these guys in 2018! Arthur Charlesworth

19. SOPHIE – IT’S OK TO CRY

Scottish artist SOPHIE boasts mass euphoria in ‘It’s Okay To Cry’ and it’s arguably her best work to date. The experimental musician has produced electronic bangers for some of the world’s most popular artists, including Madonna, Charli XCX and Namie Amuro and it’s easy to see why. In this offering, we hear a tasteful overload of synths leading up to an unimaginable climax resulting in a rapturous eruption so enormous it’ll blow your speakers. Her delicate whispering gives the track a profound purpose and sense of direction, ensuing emotion that is often lost in electronic music. Rahul Bhogal

18. GEOWULF – DRINK TOO MUCH

Australia’s Geowulf have been delivering dreamy pop track after dreamy pop track this year, but ‘Drink Too Much’ signified a clear step up in their talent for pop melodies. Explaining the track with the statement “Bulk red wine + tired relationships = bad news baby,” epitomizing that mission to escape your thoughts, but completely failing and, in this case, getting taken over by them even more. It’s a track for all those drinking to forget about someone they (once) care(d) for, for whatever reason, and failing. Samantha Daly

17. MUNA – I KNOW A PLACE

Pop trio Muna have been dedicated and vocal champions of the LBGTQ community since they first began releasing music in 2015, so understandably the band were wholly shaken in the wake of the Orlando shootings at Pulse nightclub in the middle of last year. Written in response to the cold and senseless incident, ‘I Know A Place’ refuses to mourn in sorrow but instead reinstate a sense of pride and joy that persists in the LGBTQ community, one that refuses to be stifled in the wake of continuous homophobic attack. “I know a place where we can go where everyone gonna lay down their weapon,” sings vocalist Katie Gavin in defiance of bigotry and knowing what it means to compromise yourself in fear of others. “Don’t be afraid of love and affection.” Kayleigh Watson

16. ST. VINCENT – LOS AGELESS

St. Vincent’s 2017 album MASSEDUCTION has been a career defining moment for the artist and ‘Los Ageless’ is one of her best tracks yet. As the geographic and emotional polar opposite from the beautiful first ‘New York’, ‘Los Ageless’ targets Hollywood’s obsession with youth. With its massive riff, the even bigger chorus and her personality more and more apparent throughout, Clark has transformed into the world’s greatest pop and rockstar with this track. Tobias Pugh

15. KYLE CRAFT – HEARTBREAK JUNKY

Kyle Craft’s debut album Dolls of Highland could well be one of the most overlooked albums of 2016. With a sound that has the musicality of the Band, the lyrics of Dylan and a style that is Tom Waits partially submerged in a southern bayou, the Sub Pop artist has built up a loyal following. His fantastic Girl Crazy LP released earlier this year featuring covers of tracks by female artists showed his versatility and he sealed off 2017 with ‘Heartbreak Junkie’; a tease of his sophomore release Full Circle Nightmare slated for February 2018.

Beginning with a ‘Fortunate Son’ inspired riff, but played on a guitar that sounds like it’s propping up the bar, ‘Heartbreak Junkie’ enthrals you in seconds. The guitar work is simple enough; acoustic and electric intertwine, but then the horns hit you with all the sounds of the seventies but with none of the staleness. The video is a modern day, smoky room symposium, of sexy people sprawled out on sofas a la the Stones in ‘Beggars Banquet’. But Craft knows what he says is the song’s selling point and the images double as a lyric video. His voice rises and falls, able to fit long lines into short spaces with all the frantic fury of the failed lover he is playing. We can’t wait for the album, and fingers crossed for a 2018 UK tour in support of it! AC

14. PVRIS – WINTER

With an appropriately ice-cold track for the frozen month of December, but without all the Christmas cheer, PVRIS join the list with ‘Winter.’ This track is PVRIS at their best, effortlessly blending alt-rock and pop elements together in the signature moody, theatrical style that the electro-punk trio have come to exemplify. In perhaps their most infectiously pop-heavy tune to date, Lynn Gunn’s commanding vocals soar through the track atop a mounting drum rhythm and powerful multi-synth attack. James Makin

13. PHOENIX – TI AMO

Who does’t love Phoenix? If that’s you, then by all means try harder! The French five-piece returned this year with their first album since 2013’s Bankrupt!, an anthemic and brashly synthesised concoction of glittering indie pop. With their latest album Ti Amo, the band took a detour further into Europe into a fantasised version of Italy, with sweet music, dancing and hyperreal romance. Mixing retro-effected basslines with colourful synths and rhythmic guitars, vocalist Thomas Mars weaves youthfully vivid tales of love and life as he switches effortlessly between English and Italian. As the title track, ’Ti Amo’ is the total embodiment of the sentiment of the album.  KW

12. MIGUEL – PINEAPPLE SKIES

Miguel‘s third single off latest record War & Leisure comes in the form of a reinvention of funk. ‘Pineapple Skies’ takes 80s inspired pop-funk production, infectious rhythms and a voice smoother than velvet, and throws it into a tornado of 21st Century soul and electronica, hurling out the refreshing twister we have before us. Miguel has redeveloped his sound for each album, and it’s the same for this one.

The R&B star’s intention with the record is to help people get through the current political climate: “[The album] is more about the personal struggle to find our way in the middle of it all. Stay positive but be mindful. Not to ignore what’s happening, but not to be bogged down by it and stop our way of life.” RB

11. HAIM – LITTLE OF YOUR LOVE

A track so simple in so many ways, yet still so brilliant. It’s virtually impossible to listen to this and not have “give me just a little of your love” go around in your head for hours, maybe even days, to come.

Full of confidence in that nervous kind of way that almost feels a little desperate and forced, but very pure, the Haim sisters give us something to dance to, drive to, sing to, conquer the world to, in the most joyful way possible. SD

10. BILLIONAIRE – DEATH OF A STAR

When I reviewed this track back in August I said it was Bowie’s ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide’ played by Suicide. Billionaire was one of our greatest discoveries this year, Cheap Credit one of the best EPs we heard and ‘Death of a Star’ is definitely one of the best tracks. Coming off the back of the 2016 killing fields, where ‘stars’ went out faster than Alderaan in ‘A New Hope’, this track had added poignancy in the lyrics. The spiky synths which were half modern techno, half Martin Rev/Fad Gadget eighties industrial, looked both back and forward, but the track’s best bit is Billionaire’s passivity in his voice. Against this the angst and abrasion sound all the more amazing and this makes the track well on the way to becoming a classic. AC

9. FRANK OCEAN  – BIKING (SOLO)

There is simultaneously never enough Frank Ocean material and never enough hours in the day to listen to the same song by him on repeat. This year, he has continued his low profile while dropping tracks like ‘Chanel’, ‘Provider’ and ‘Lens’ to universal praise. ‘Biking’, a song simply about riding his bike, is probably the best of these, but with ‘Biking (solo)’, Frank proves he is possibly the only artist in the world who could release a version without verses by Jay Z and Tyler, the Creator and no one bat an eyelid. TP

8. TOVE LO – DISCO TITS

“Shy” and “retiring” are two words not to be associated with Swedish pop sensation Tove Lo. Since the release of her debut album Queen of the Clouds, Lo has only become more confident and vocal about her romantic dalliances and sexuality, with her hit single ‘Cool Girl’ touching upon non-traditional relationship arrangements and the idea of being someone else. Taken from her third album Blue Lips, lead single ‘Disco Tits’ is an unabashed as Lo gets. Mixing shimmering synths and buoyant disco beats, ‘Disco Tits’ is her most “pop” effort to date – and her most blatantly sexually charged. As the introduction to Blue Lips – itself a concept album about the highs and ultimate demise of a relationship – ‘Disco Tits’ is a slick and heated track most at home in a club. Trust us, it’s a riot. KW

7. LORDE – SUPERCUT

It’s undeniable that Lorde’s return to our lives was one of the best things about this year as a whole, Melodrama was a masterpiece unto itself and although each and every track off the album could easily have a place in this list… there’s something about ‘Supercut’ specifically that has pushed itself above the rest (even, can you believe, ‘Green Light’).

We’re certain that there isn’t anyone alive who isn’t guilty of daydreaming, of building expectations up that sometimes you let those expectations run away with themselves until you almost start believing that what you’ve created in your head is real life, when it’s not. That’s the basis of this track from Lorde, “Cause’ in my head, I do everything right,” super relatable, incredibly infectious with a whole load of emotion thrown in for good measure. A pop banger to own all pop bangers. SD

6. ONEOTHRIX FT. IGGY POP – THE PURE AND DAMNED

Who ever thought one day the Godfather of Punk would collaborate with an edgy electronic artist? When the soundtrack for ‘Good Time’ was released, fans of Oneohtrix Point Never would have been surprised to find the final track featuring some rather spectacular vocals from one of the most important figures in the history of rock and roll, Iggy Pop. OPN opens the taps to unleash sustained, sombre keys ebbing in a river of negative space before cascading down a waterfall of substantial synths, yielding a backdrop so luxuriating the vocals seem to bathe in it. Pop’s ominous whispers add atmospheric qualities to bring the track down to a chillingly relaxing masterpiece, creating ample room for listeners to focus on the impeccable lyrics. It should come as no surprise the eccentric duo have earned a place on more than one of our end of year listsRB

5. ALEX CAMERON FT. ANGEL OLSEN – STRANGER’S KISS

From Alex Cameron’s new album, this romantic little number sounds like a Christmassy War On Drugs song but with the wonderful Angel Olsen featuring alongside Cameron’s own unique silly-yet-profound perspective on songwriting. Lyrically it’s a mix of poetic lyrics like “In my dreams I miss you, but I wake up to reality’s bliss” and confusing Cameron-isms of “Me and Roy, we got a pretty mean possé, with the down syndrome Jew from the real estate crew”. TP

4. BANFI – JUNE

London three-piece Banfi have had a busy 2017. They’ve crashed through many a festival on their way to this end of the year, with four stellar singles under their belts. The jewel in this crown is ‘June’, a rose-tinted retro pop tune pinned with pining, bittersweet sentiment. A pulsing bassline and deftly plucked guitars soundtrack a desperate airport dash, a three-minute cinematic spectacle echoing the best of the 80s greats. Never has heartache sounded so euphoric. KW

3. KASABIAN – YOU’RE IN LOVE WITH A PSYCHO

Few bands can match Kasabian for consistency and longevity.  2017 marked the release of their sixth studio album, For Crying Out Loud, and lead single ‘You’re in Love with a Psycho’ showed that the Leicester lads had lost none of their world-weary pop charm after 20 years in each other’s company. The track is beautifully crafted and irresistibly catchy. Amongst the moshing of their live shows it is sung, word for word back to the band, while in the context of the album it is a cool contrast against the electronic 48:13 style of ‘Are You Looking for Some Action’ or the West Ryder horns of ‘Comeback Kid’. However, this track is best served as a standalone single. From now until at least the release of the new Arctic Monkeys album, it would be uncontroversial to say Kasabian are the best band in Britain right now. ‘You’re in Love with a Psycho’ shows off their softer side, but it is certainly one of the tracks of this year and good luck getting it out of your head in the next! AC

2. HEY CHARLIE – HEY

‘Hey’, an introduction like any other, was how we were greeted by newcomers Hey Charlie. This time though, ‘Hey’ was all we wanted to hear. On repeat. The track is a fiery, stunning, catchy song that’s perfect in its simplicity. It’s easily sits as one of the best rock songs all year, and it was their debut. A debut good enough to instantly know to expect big things from this band, and we were right, as they proved with their brilliant Young and Lonesome EP. TP

1. WOLF ALICE – DON’T DELETE THE KISSES

A large amount of the time, songs are either great lyrically or melodically, it’s very rare that you get a track that is equally as great in both senses. Wolf Alice’s ‘Don’t Delete The Kisses’ goes above and beyond with this. Incredibly emotive, soft and intimate, with a powerful, euphoric progression; this is a track you can get lost in. It holds you completely captivated, hanging on to every word that Ellie produces.

Speaking on the track Ellie said that “it’s meant to be totally unashamed,” stating that she wanted to write “one of those, you know, ‘head-out-the window on a long drive’ kind of tunes.”

We’d highly recommend listening to the stripped back version that they recorded for Spotify too, the minimalism really showcases the power of the vocals and just how talented a vocalist Ellie Roswell is. An undeniable number one in our top 20 tracks of the year. SD