The 10 Worst Songs of 2018 4 years ago

The 10 Worst Songs of 2018

Because not everything was great this year.

In fact, it wasn't the greatest of years in general on the music front.


After much deliberation, this critic has come to declare 2018 as an "alright, not bad" year for music - and culture in general, while we're on the subject - which is a fair upgrade from previously thinking it was outright poor.

Listing out the 20 best songs and 20 best albums of the year definitely helped the cause, but now, dearest reader, we simply must turn our attention to the bad stuff.

Specifically, the top 10 worst songs of 2018. Enjoy, because I sure didn't...

#10. Justin Timberlake | 'Filthy'


Clip via Justin Timberlake

An astonishing effort to kick us off.

Justin Timberlake attempted to split himself into two very different forms at the start of the year; one part futuristic pop (which he's been decent-to-great at before) and one part bro-country sensitive Good Old Boy type (which he should never try ever again).


'Filthy' sounded a difficult alarm upon its arrival on the first Friday of 2018 and despite one or two inventive flourishes, the song is a mess that registers as Taylor Swift 'Look What You Made Me Do' levels of awkward.

#9. Justin Timberlake | Every Other Single on Man of the Woods

Clip via Justin Timberlake


Man of the Woods is comfortably the worst major album release of the year and the kind of career nadir that makes you question if the artist should call it a day.

There isn't a single acceptable tune on the thing, and so we see no other choice but to give JT special credit on this list.

#8. Blanks | That 80s cover of Post Malone's 'Better Now'

Clip via Music by Blanks


Post Malone can be a fairly easy target and he certainly doesn't deserve this, for which the artist in question - 'Blanks', apparently - should probably serve prison time.

#7. Poppy ft. Grimes | 'Play Destroy'

Clip via Poppy

For the uninitiated, Poppy is essentially an art-pop project that plays around with the blur between artificial intelligence and reality.

Her music veers between sunshine radio-friendly wanderings and overproduced metal riffing, as 'Play Destroy' attests to.

It was probably only a matter of time before Grimes got roped in, but it's a shame to hear her stoop to this uninspired, stock level and that's coming from someone who often makes a case for the nu-metal genre.

#6. DJ Snake | 'Taki Taki'

Clip via DJ Snake

A weekend in Guantanamo Bay would arguably be better for your overall health.

#5. Calvin Harris ft. Sam Smith | 'Promises'

Clip via Calvin Harris

Back in 2017, it looked like Calvin Harris had suddenly gotten quite good.

His link-up with Frank Ocean and Migos was comfortably one of the best tunes of that calendar year, and the other star-studded singles that preceded his album were strong.

And then the album came out and it sucked and now he's back to generic dance numbers like his life depends on it. Speaking of...

#4. Calvin Harris ft. Dua Lipa | 'One Kiss'

Clip via Calvin Harris

Really? This was the 'Sound of the Summer' banger for 2018?

Keep it.

#3. Greta Van Fleet | 'When The Curtain Falls'

Clip via Greta Van Fleet

And if this nightmare is the future of rock and roll, you can keep that, too.

#2. Anne-Marie | '2002'

Clip via Anne-Marie

Let's do some maths.

Anne-Marie Rose Nicholson was born on 7 April 1991.

'2002' is set in, you guessed it, 2002.

The song references listening to and singing and JAY-Z's '99 Problems', which arrived in 2003.

So is she a time traveller or what's the story? It's a head-scratcher and might be vaguely intriguing if the song itself wasn't such weak phoned-in rubbish.

#1. Maroon 5 | 'Girls Like You'

Clip via Maroon 5

Deep sigh.

One of the great events of 2018 was the World Cup. It mostly went off without a hitch, the leering spectre of violent hooliganism magically took the month off and the football was excellent for most of the competition.

Alas, those memories are forever tainted by Maroon 5 shilling for Hyundai every time the thing went to an ad break. Still, it could have been worse.

They could have been singing 'Girls Like You', a song that is barely a song at all, rather more like what robots think young people think sounds cool and wholesome and fun.

Trouble is, it's about as fun as a 12-hour root canal with no anaesthetic. All involved should be utterly ashamed, including Cardi B for picking up the easy featured artist cheque.

No wonder nobody wants to do the Super Bowl half time show with them.