5. Kanye West – “Ghost Town (feat. Kid Cudi & 070 Shake)”
Kanye’s transparency on his bipolar disorder is quite well documented at this point despite his relatively recent reveal of it. “Ghost Town” is probably the disjointed thoughts of Kanye all culminated into a single song. Enlisting the help of Kid Cudi (who also suffered from mental illness), the duo sings their hearts out on this ridiculously beautiful duet. Then, 070 Shake appears at the back of the track to deliver one of the best guest verses in recent memory, perfectly bolting out the joys of liberation with childlike innocence.
4. Janelle Monae – “Make Me Feel”
Much more than a simple Prince tribute, “Make Me Feel” doubles as an ode to Monae’s sexual identity. Filled with excessive amounts of gusto and confidence, she proclaims her uncontainable love for the song’s unnamed muse, playfully alluding to her rumored (though now confirmed) pansexuality. At the end of the day, the track still functions as an incredible summer jam that’s guaranteed to inject into any party.
3. Mac Miller – “2009”
An easy fan favorite from Mac’s final album Swimming, “2009” is a reflection on his life since the year before his breakout mixtape K.I.D.S. up till his recent release. A song that declared his yearning to live, Mac details his slow dissociation from his drug-heavy lifestyle to one of sobriety and positivity. His tragic death then makes this track all the more heartbreaking, a life on the road to recovery that was unfortunately cut short by a single fatal decision. Acutely aware of the dangers of drug overdoses, “2009” will now serve as a reminder of the potential that Mac always had.
2. Travis Scott – “Sicko Mode”
How many songs can boast about having 5 beat switches in a span of 5 minutes? “Sicko Mode” is THE defining moment of Travis Scott the ringleader, as he gathers collaborators and producers from across the industry to work towards his singular vision. An exercise in extravagance and complexity, this track is the pinnacle of his breakout year. It’s every notable aspect of Travis’ career placed into a single song.
1. Childish Gambino – “This is America”
Where were you when this track dropped? When every music publication out there clamoured call its music video ‘the decade’s best’? The single greatest achievement of Donald Glover music career thus far; no other song in 2018 has been able to captivate the globe as much as “This is America”. An ingeniously scathing observation on the American public, it’s a song that perfectly encapsulates the state of the world today. Chaos has never sounded so good.