2023 was another one for the books. We saw Skrillex officially make his long-anticipated return and dominate, Flowdan became the king of features, bubbling genres launched their way to the forefront, legends made their mark, and a crop of new artists carved out their lanes. To celebrate another wild year of music our editorial team has rounded up the Top 50 Songs of 2023. As usual, the list aims to balance overall impact, popularity, DJ support, the creativity and groundbreaking nature of a release, and quality. Peep the full list below and let us know how we did.
50. Matroda – In The Air
Matroda’s takeover of the house music scene is not just confined to the studio, he is a global phenomenon witnessed on renowned stages and festivals. After rinsing out ‘In The Air’ to his fan base, it was only a matter of time before this powerhouse single was released. His seamless fusion of bass-house and an infectious melody gets you to throw your hands in the air from the very start. A tune the industry cannot get enough, Matroda has once again proven he is only getting warmed up as we approach the new year.
49. Hedex – MHITR (Semi Automatic) ft. Eksman
This year’s jump-up anthem comes from Hedex, a legend in the scene. While the British producer’s success across the drum and bass world is nothing new, ‘MHITR (Semi-Automatic)’ made waves in North America this year as the genre continued to gain more popularity. From the infectious vocals, to the ground-shattering horns, to the soul-crushing bass, what is there not to love about ‘MHITR (Semi-Automatic)’?
48. IMANU – Empress (Zeds Dead Remix)
The Unfold remix album is (subjectively) one of the best remix albums in recent years. The combination of veterans and up-and-comers, as well as the diversity of styles and top-tier execution make it an incredible listening experience from start to finish. IMANU started his career remixing bigger artists, and having Zeds Dead remix ‘Empress’ is a full-circle moment. As the most popular remix from the ensemble, we figured it was deserving of a spot in our Top 50, with Zeds Dead returning to an old-school dubstep sound that many find nostalgic and invigorating.
47. chromonicci – Reset
Between his Stasis III. EP and Era III. EP, both released in 2023, chromonicci took two rather different directions with his output this year. ‘Reset.’ from Stasis III. is a track that captures the old-school chromonicci sound design. Its future bass bounce makes this an uplifting tune reminiscent of the likes of Soulection, Night Owl Radio, or Phuture Collective. The entirety of Stasis III. has a sort of classy swagger to it with its jazzy instrumentation. Bells, strings, and subtle vocals adorn ‘Reset.’ making it the icing on the cake.
46. Silcrow – TAKE ME DOWN
Through this year, Silcrow has showcased tremendous growth within his production and presence within the electronic music spectrum. From a wild drum and bass collaboration with DNMO, to some energy-infused singles, he’s an artist that definitely deserves to be highlighted. Released not too long ago, ‘TAKE ME DOWN’ is an absolute anthem of a tune. It harnesses the Silcrow sound while expanding its abilities and capabilities to a whole new level. From the fantastic and mind-boggling vocal flowing throughout, earth-shattering sound design, to an intoxicating rhythmic structure, it’ll leave you wanting more and more. From beginning to end, it grabs the listener’s attention instantly and leaves them in a complete trance. Transporting you to a tropical island or deep in an underground rave setting. We have no doubt you’ll be hearing this one gain more and more attention through the coming months and new year! Stoked to hear more from him.
45. barnacle boi – Love Hotel
barnacle boi has been a staple of the wave scene for years, but he has lived through 2023 as a true protagonist, gaining a major following, especially in the US, and also performing in Europe and Asia. All this traveling cut his artistic output to the bone for the first six months of the year, but when he took the stage again, he did so in style. His Introspect EP, released between September and November, immediately established itself as one of the most solid releases of the year, driven by exceptional lead single ‘Love Hotel’. The song is simply a masterclass in wave, both tied to the original sound but also able to instantly hook every kind of modern electronic music listener. An instant classic that is destined to remain in high rotation for years.
44. P Money x Whiney – Keep Your Distance
First landing on our radar as a pair with the exceptional standout ‘Buss The Red,’ P Money & Whiney have proven that their chemistry is certified. While they released an excellent joint project in Streets, Love & Other Stuff it’s the collaborative effort off P Money’s even more impressive Money Over Everything 4 that lands on our list. The 16-track mixtape sees P Money at the top of his game unleashing razor sharps bars and showing the many dimensions of his sound from gritty street cuts, rave anthems, and more reflective pieces. ‘Keep Your Distance’ is the perfect embodiment of the project, it’s smooth yet hard-hitting featuring impeccable production, a crazy catchy hook, and top-tier wordplay. From “How you gonna diss me about D&B when you man are still chasing status (Chase & Status)?” to “Come alive, Darth Vader, man better dip low (Diplo), man’s got a major laser,” P Money reminds us why he’s a UK legend.
43. Acyan – NONSTOP
Representing his stellar sound design and the OTHERWRLD label, Acyan’s single, ‘NONSTOP’ is a danger to all dance floors across the world. Showing pure passion and fiery perseverance in his production. It was the first single off his MASCULTURE EP which demonstrated who he truly is as an artist in this scene. Completely knocking your expectations out of the park, and representing his beginnings as well as his current state creating. The single is a pure symbol for his name while honoring the label in all its glory. From those sporadic bass leads, a sweet melodic taste, seismic drum creations, and an attitude you wouldn’t want to mess with, ‘NONSTOP’ truly makes you feel more confident about where the electronic trap genre is heading beyond the horizon. Artists like Acyan will make sure it’s in good hands.
42. KILLMATTER – NITRO BURNOUT (feat. Molly Shiveley)
If there was an artist who really deserved a spot on this list, it’s KILLMATTER. This madman of an artist introduced himself on a huge scale this year. His unpredictable techniques and skillsets will leave you flabbergasted and starstruck. Leaving a very similar feeling you had when first discovering electronic music in the first place. His works are nothing but a breath of fresh air.
From an iconic 2023 showcase, to releasing monumental singles and flips, this was a perfect year for him to introduce himself with elegant passion. Together with Molly Shiveley, ‘NITRO BURNOUT’ is a must-listen to the highest degree. From top-tier sampling, gorgeous drum work, wild sound design, and a need for speed, this track is everything you could ever adore in a KILLMATTER piece. The flow of this single is friendly, aggressive, and surprising beyond your wildest dreams. It tackles and highlights many genres due to its strong switch-ups. Hip-hop, breakbeat, and of course electronic trap have never felt better in your ears. And Molly Shiveley’s confident and angelic pressence just adds the perfect layer within this experience. Her peaceful and colorful nature will instantly bring you into heaven. So for 2024, do not sleep on either of these artists. You won’t regret it.
41. Strobez – Drama
Strobez has become such a strong and monstrous presence in the underground. The young prodigy has made incredible moves this year in the form of his debut EP, creating a well-grounded vision, and gathering many unreleased tunes for the new year. He even got to support Nitepunk who’s taken a huge liking to his own work! But earlier this year, his single ‘Drama’ really put him on the map. Opening a huge door and gateway. This cosmic and neon-based adventure is remarkable and simply jaw-dropping. Showcasing the true nature and symbol of his overall character and techniques. It’s a roller coaster of pure insanity. Incorporating tastes of dubstep, house, and rave infused characteristics. It’s a track you won’t find or hear anywhere else due to its special and eye-opening drive and spirit surrounding.
Just when you think it’ll go one way, the artist does a complete 180. Leaving you speechless and lost in a daze. As if you were experiencing a real underground rave for the very first time. The vocal samples combined with the hypnotic sound design will throw you for a loop in a gorgeous reawakening. Those hardcore and distorted bass lines and leads will bring smiles to any dance floor around the world. There’s so much organic detail in each pocket. Not to mention those lush and old-school melodic chords to really leave you in a dream you won’t ever want to wake up from. So do not sleep on this artist because he has big things coming in 2024.
40. jordnmoody – Rolldro
Is it possible for a track to be both stunning laidback and absolutely bangin? jordnmoody’s ‘Rolldro’ proves that it can with masterful force. Built around haunting vocal bends and gritty pitched-down rap vocals, jordmoody weaves the bass-laden rap-inspired sound around them for an absolutely mindblowing ride. ‘Rolldro’ is the embodiment of everything that makes jordnmoody so special. It’s dark, filthy and yet it’s so fucking clean. This one was on repeat all year long.
39. ROSSY – Lyra
2023 was the year for ROSSY. The bubbling singer, producer, and DJ took her career to new heights with her HEAVENS DOOR EP on Hard Recs and the accompanying tour. From selling out shows with Brownies and Lemonade to putting together one the best tour line-ups out, and blowing us away with her music, she truly reached new and well-deserved heights. While ‘LYRA’ wasn’t the biggest streaming song of the project it was simply the best. It embodies the sound that we continue to long for. It’s minimalist, it’s engrossing, it’s massive. No lyrics, mesmerizing synths, brutish bass… and those fucking horns. This is electronic trap music at its absolute best, producers take notes.
38. Lab Group, Player Dave – HD feat. JAWNZA
Lab Group’s production really shines with a vocalist. The nuanced production of Lab Group, Player Dave’s genius, and JAWNZA’s seamless flow are a combination to behold. There’s a dreamy, ethereal feel to this track that allows JAWNZA’s voice to pierce through the veil and tell a story. There’s plenty of hip-hop influence in the experimental bass music scene, but it’s really nice to hear something truly original here. These are lyrics with substance and experience behind them, and if you pay attention, you’ll notice.
37. Rohaan & Flowdan – Musket
What a 2023 that was for Rohaan! Festivals, tours, international club gigs, he played it all. At one point I lost count of all the times he shuttled between the UK and US. Amidst all this traveling, the Manchester-based producer has also found time to release major singles via Hospital Records and HARD Rec, but the one that has stolen the show is definitely ‘Musket’, along with the ubiquitous Flowdan. ‘Musket’ is modern Drum&Bass at its peak. Muscular, filthy, raw, and also technically exquisite. A dancefloor destroyer with an indisputable ‘radio’ potential, which has little to envy the other collaborations Flowdan has been involved in this year. When ‘Muskets’ starts playing, gun fingers are a must.
36. Lizdek x Bendel – Away to You
The wave genre as a whole made countless impacts on the underground this year. Lizdek and Bendel’s, ‘Away to You’ represented the spectrum in a gorgeous and poetic fashion. This emotional journey of sound tugs at the heartstrings while harnessing pure power throughout. Both artists worked together beautifully to create such an iconic piece. From a wide open environment of angelic melodic structures to a vocal wrapping itself around your soul, it’s as if you were soaring through the clouds, heading towards the future. Discovering its unknown riches and secrets. Those impactful drums combined with an airy and distorted lead really bring the vision to life. Making you want to live within this world not yet found. The instrumentation and arrangement create such a cinematic expedition. Making you anxious and eager to hear what comes next. And once that arp introduces itself in the second chorus, it’ll make tears stream down like rain from above. Making this one of the best works of art we’ve heard this year. Bravo gentlemen.
35. Rome in Silver – Waiting…
Rome in Silver’s debut album ᖭ༏ᖫ, released in September of 2023, is the culmination of years of production talent dating back to at least 2015. ‘Waiting…’ is a feel-good track that sets the tone for the rest of the piece. The fuzzy chords, heavenly vocals, and two-stepping beat are a keen reflection of the indie and pop influences that have helped to shape Rome in Silver’s sound. The chorus, “Waiting and waiting and waiting for this,” is a good summary of how I felt anticipating a full album from Rome in Silver, and now we’ve got it. This introspective and thoughtful piece undoubtedly merits a full listen start-to-finish.
34. TroyBoi x Armani White – Shut Shit Down
What happens when one of the hottest buzzing rappers connects with one of the most inventive and consistent producers of the past decade? They ‘Shut Shit Down’ of course. Pairing TroyBoi’s iconic signature bounce, and experimental and worldly flourishes with Armani White’s commanding presence, ill flows, and killer bars makes for a truly exceptional anthem. The track only dropped a month ago so it’s difficult to measure its full impact, but the official video did a million plays in a week and it just got added to EA Sports FC 24 soundtrack, so it looks like it’s only getting bigger. If we had a bit more time to truly see it live all year I could see it creeping into the top 10 with ease. Regardless TroyBoi x Armani White dropped one of the best collaborations of the year.
33. Skrillex x Missy Elliot x Mr. Oizo – RATATA
Skrillex, Missy Elliot, and Mr. Oizo. The 3 names alone make this an easy pick for the best of the year. Unconventional, surprising, and anthemic. Missy revisits some of her most iconic lyrics while delivering a healthy helping of fresh content. She’s incredible as always and Skrillex and Mr. Oizo match her energy with ease. Blurring the boundaries between weird and addictive it finds that perfect balance that has made Skrillex one of the biggest artists in the world. This was easily one of the most anticipated cuts off Quest For Fire and it was worthy of all the hype and more. 2023 belonged to Skrillex and ‘RATATA’ is just one powerful reason why (more ahead).
32. Nikki Nair x Hudson Mohawke x Tayla Parx – Set the Roof
‘Set the Roof’ is going to go down as a club music classic. This acid techno- and garage-inspired banger is fueled by a captivating vocal from Tayla Parx, with percussion that pairs with footwork like steak pairs with wine. These two boundary-pushing producers combine in a unique blend of basement rave energy and sub-pounding bass face. It’s frankly a silly stylistic pairing that works marvelously well, giving it a rapidly changing but consistent pace that keeps you on your toes throughout.
31. Ternion Sound, Emz – Heaven Sent
Ternion Sound’s Digital Artifice album was an epic 26-track foray into the various realms of bass music, heavily influenced by sounds of the UK while still maintaining a North American appeal. It’s tough to pick a single standout from the collection, so this pick is extremely subjective, but ‘Heaven Sent’ is a banger in all senses of the word. It only takes 25 seconds to get into the thick of things and offers a relentless dose of hard-hitting bars and bass for the rest of its duration. The chemistry between Ternion Sound and Emz is undeniable, as the producers let the rapper’s vocals shine over a grimey beat that is incredibly hype. As the vocals fade, the instrumentals only shine brighter, attesting to the trio’s raw talent.
30. Disclosure – Go The Distance
Among the many legends who released albums this year, Disclosure made their return to this format with the release of Alchemy. Boasting a mix of the past, present, and future sound of the duo, the album saw the Lawrence brothers experiment with a handful of different genres while never losing their signature flair. Speaking of signature, no track from Alchemy better represents the Disclosure sound that the masses have come to love more than ‘Go The Distance,’ and boy does it groove. Featuring the quintessential Disclosure percussion, bassline, and catchy vocals, ‘Go The Distance’ is a slick display of the duo’s ability to keep their classic sound timeless. It’ll get you moving no matter the setting.
29. ninajirachi – 1×1
“Ninajirachi remains one of the most incredible and unique artists in the game. Her fantasy when it comes to productions doesn’t seem to have an end while her technical skills are constantly improving, alongside her awareness of herself.” This is what I wrote in our Top 50 Songs Of 2022 article. A year has passed but my opinion about ninajirachi has not changed at all. In the past twelve months, she has simply reaffirmed her role as an undisputed star on the Australian and world stage. Even with not that many songs released in 2023, her freshness and unpredictability have remained immaculate (‘SHYPOP’ with ISOxo is another example). ‘1×1’ is part electro, part big room, part pop, part punk, a chimera that is hard to define but works beautifully. It’s perfect to mosh to, perfect to sing along to, perfect to drive around to. It’s a one-of-a-kind tune, like its creator
28. Juelz – Surrender
Juelz has once again had another successful and impactful year. The speed demon has worked countlessly over the years to this shining year of possibilities. From stunning performances including his debut headline show in LA together with Brownies & Lemonade, to his first ever album Floorspace being released on Sable Valley, he’s stopped at nothing to fulfill his utmost desires in life. And ‘Surrender’ was an absolute highlight from this massive project. Targeting multiple audiences within the electronic spectrum while always staying true to what makes his style so unique and powerful. This single specifically highlights his many years of creative freedom while introducing an evolved form of production. From an angelic and euphoric vocal carrying us through the adventure to Juelz’s signature techniques and melodic creations, there’s many surprises lurking around the corner for us to discover. The way he implements electronic trap, drum and bass with a dash of happy hardcore simply makes this tune truly worthy of major praise and admiration. We’re stoked to hear what’s next for his story!
27. James Blake – Big Hammer
James Blake’s Playing Robots into Heaven was an unexpected and welcome addition to 2023’s releases. As a singer, a songwriter, and a producer, he has put so much time and attention into every track on this album and it shows. ‘Big Hammer’ is a return to James Blake’s experimental roots, echoing his earlier releases like ‘Air & Lack Thereof’ and ‘The Bells Sketch.’ Growing up playing house parties in the UK and treating listeners to jungle and dubstep bangers, James Blake is no stranger to the Ragga Twins, whose vocal samples bring a spectacular energy to this track. Its midpoint on the album serves as a nice switch-up from some of the gentler, more pensive songs and really helps the cohesive work as a whole feel like a different trajectory than what we’ve heard from him in recent years.
26. Space Laces – DOMINATE (VIP)
The term “viral” has by now taken on a predominantly negative connotation, but say what you will, having occasional mindfuck moments that catalyze everyone’s attention out of nowhere is always cool. With the release of his monstrous VIP edit of ‘Dominate’, Space Laces triggered exactly one of these epiphanies. The infamous clip in which he plays this new, mammoth techno version of his 2021 classic has spread everywhere on the web so much so that even I, not exactly an avid Space Laces fan, couldn’t help it. The scale of the phenomenon and the personality of the track make ‘Dominate VIP’ a cultural phenomenon with few rivals in 2023.
25. camoufly – Always
The rise of camoufly has not known any setbacks this year. The gradual transformation of his core sound that began at the end of 2022 went off without a hitch and, indeed, launched the project to new heights. A full EP, tons of collaborations, the first live gigs, camoufly has been spinning non-stop for the past twelve months. The icing on the cake is definitely ‘Always’, a unique, glamorous cut that cleverly surfs between bounce, house, and UKG influences. Released completely independently (it wasn’t even among the leading singles of his In Plain Sight EP), this song has amassed millions of plays, becoming his most popular success yet. A remarkable achievement that celebrates camoufly’s all-around talent
24. Monty x Visages – Grains
You might be asking yourself, “why is such a new tune so high up on this list?” The answer is simple: Monty and Visages. While the artists have been around for a while, few have risen the ranks of the (drum and) bass scene as quickly as these guys. Their consistent output of top-tier material ranging from grungy 140 to ethereal drum and bass has established them among the best producers in the game right now. And, while their individual outputs have been nothing short of spectacular, we thought featuring a collaboration was more fitting for this list. Hence, ‘Grains,’ a new-ish drum and bass cut that embodies Monty and Visages’ styles to a tee. It’s liquid yet lively, meticulously produced, and insanely clean. I tweeted about this months ago, but I’m still of the opinion that a Monty and Visages supergroup called Montages would do some incredible damage.
23. Skeler x Deadcrow – ADRENALIN
Let’s start by saying that Sable Valley hit the jackpot by signing ‘ADRENALIN.’ After all, what could we expect from a collaboration between two titans like Deadcrow and Skeler? Nothing less than a hit of course. The two producers didn’t mince words, delivering a thoroughbred banger that takes no prisoners and only cares about titillating our adrenal glands and triggering mosh pits. Again, ‘ADRENALIN. is a banger, an excellent one. An explosive compound that dramatically mixes the technical and creative know-how of Deadcrow and Skeler, which have their roots in wave but now go well beyond it. The numbers may not be on this track’s side but if you want to turn your set into a legendary experience, 2023 doesn’t have much better to offer.
22. Overmono – Is U
Overmono have had the spotlight on them all year. Their debut album Good Lies conquered all the headlines and since March they have performed literally everywhere. Their take on bass, garage, and breaks put them at the epicenter of the contemporary UK club music wave that has been making waves these past twelve months (and will certainly continue to do so throughout 2024). The decision on which track to select was a tough one but in the end the choice fell on ‘Is U’. A direct heir to their classic ‘So U Kno’, ‘Is U’ reiterates all the Russel brothers’ ability to play with minimalism. The pulsating bassline is a perfect match for the (spot-on) vocal sample, while the suffuse and atmospheric synths flirt perfectly with both of them. The result is simply addictive. A testament to Overmone’s talent in rendering a purely underground sound, pop.
21. Jon Casey x Pauline Herr – Toxic
The spirits of both Jon Casey and Pauline Herr shine brighter than a phoenix. Their single, ‘Toxic,’ off their collaborative EP, took both fan bases to a euphoric and colorful realm of peace. An unexpected-sounding yet highly rewarding tune filled to the brim with spicy characteristics. Both of their styles took center stage with pride and confidence as the journey starts and ends with pure remedy. Beautifully processed vocals, playful sound design as well as an invigorating groove, this single really showcased how well these two work together as one. It’s an instant pop classic for both discographies. Elevating the ending vision into the stratosphere. Easily making this a wonderful highlight of 2023.
20. Cyclops – Tear Jerker
Despite being around for a few years, Cyclops really established himself in the dubstep scene this year, in particular with the release of ‘Tear Jerker.’ Played by so many artists around the world, ‘Tear Jerker’ quickly became one of the most sought-after IDs due to its raw, spine-chilling lead synth and soul-snatching energy. Upon its release on Disciple, the track continued to gain traction up to a point where almost every dubstep act was playing it in their sets. ‘Tear Jerker’ has become the Cyclops song, and deserves its spot in our top 20 this year.
19. Halogenix x Strategy – PFTD
It’s hard to overstate how extraordinary ‘PFTD’ is. Halogenix just doesn’t miss. Part of a two-track EP, this song managed to find its way into countless live sets over the year. It sounds superb on a proper sound system, as we’ve come to expect from one of the most prolific and uncompromising drum and bass/dubstep producers out there right now. Strategy’s rhymes cut through like a knife. “Let me say a few words you return to the dirt,” is right on the nose because that’s exactly what you’ll be doing after hearing this track for the first time. The rumbling bass, the doppler sound effects, a ringing that sounds like struck glass, all of it coalesces into one hell of a musical experience with out-of-this-world sound design.
18. WINK – NUKID
Over the last year, WINK has been making waves across the bass scene due to an electric sound that is tailored to the North American scene. Chaotic yet controlled, WINK’s productions are lively and energetic, boasting an infectiously refreshing sound. His debut self-titled EP released via Sable Valley was a major hit, with every track carrying the signature WINK flair that many have come to love. Among the favourites from this project is ‘NUKID,’ a track that quickly grows into a barrage of tumultuous bass, bordering the lines between trap and dubstep. Embodying the essence of the producer, ‘NUKID’ proves that while WINK might be the new kid on the block, he’s going to be a force in the scene for years to come.
17. Skrillex & Boys Noize – Fine Day Anthem
While ‘Fine Day Anthem’ is only one of many in a string of crazy releases from Skrillex and friends this year, don’t let that fool you into letting it slip under the radar. This song is what should be listed in the dictionary as the definition of “catchy.” From the vocals to the piano riffs, and even the cover art, ‘Fine Day Anthem’ feels like a 1990s euro rave hit. It is a certified dancefloor eruptor, having been teased in live sets from Skrillex and others for the better part of a year in advance prior to its official release. This is a tune we’re sure to keep hearing played out for a while and deservedly so.
16. IMANU x Rhode – Of Two Minds
What a massive year this was for IMANU. From a gorgeous new EP release, to celebrating it with his biggest tour yet, this artist from the stars has been striking our hearts and souls every chance he had. ‘Of Two Minds’ added yet another dimension of sound within IMANU’s universe of balance and elegant nature. Together with singer/songwriter Rhode, these two brought a magnificent spirit and aura to this environment.
This haunting and magnificent piece takes over your mind and spirit like a symbiote. Evolving your spiritual senses and making you feel truly free. Away from negativity while still maintaining an aggressive and curious tone. From a cinematic presentation to IMANU’s angelic and heavy sound design, it’s as if you died and came back to life in a matter of seconds. Those wavy and hypnotic melodies combined with world-ending bass lines will bring instant tears in your eyes. And Rhode’s fantastic vocal execution creates a deep and emotional shield against the darkness. Taking you by the hand as both artists dive guide you through a pool of redemption. Unchaining you from the worries in your heart.
15. Machinedrum x KUČKA – VIOLET
Machinedrum has been a veteran in the music scene for a very very long time and 2023 was a truly memorable year for him. From playing multiple shows including Coachella with HOLLY, to releasing a brand new EP filled with priceless artifacts of sound, his vision continues to separate him from the rest while delivering some of the best electronic music to date. And off his newest EP, 4#TRAX, ‘VIOLET’ was a track we just had to add to our list this year.
Bringing on KUČKA for this masterpiece was a genius idea. The execution from start to finish is truly brilliant due to both of their signature styles. Her mesmerizing vocals teaming up with his heart-wrenching melodic structures brought a breath of fresh air to the spectrum. Every second of this tune is a gift as it unwraps itself with pleasing tones and memorable lyrics. A spiritual awakening to say the least. This is a track you can put on anywhere and still feel its constant state of inspiration and calmness.
14. Larry June x The Alchemist x Big Sean – Palisades, CA
“Bettin’ on myself and every time… it’s a hit!” This year Larry June did numbers. The former niche favorite saw his profile reach new heights with the modern classic The Great Escape alongside The Alchemist. With virtually no skips, top-tier bars, and phenomenal production this is easily my choice for the album of year. With so many excellent tracks it could seem hard to narrow down just one, but ‘Palisades, CA’ is a clear standout. The beat is flawless, laying a foundation that exudes opulence while still feeling smoked out. Larry’s personality shines through as he glides between real estate plays, sipping juice, and his impressive car collection. At first pass, it could feel like another rapper flex track but you’d be mistaken, this is a hustler’s anthem that champions the power of self-belief and hard work. Add in a fantastic guest spot from Big Sean and doesn’t get much better than this. This song single-handedly convinced me to give Larry June a second listen, leading to the discovery of my favorite project of the year and my new favorite rapper. Good job Larry (and Al).
13. Chase & Status x Bou – Baddadan (feat. IRAH, Flowdan, Trigga, Takura)
“Nobody Badder Than We!” The refrain rings out throughout ‘Baddadan’ and every bar, beat, and bass hit backs it up. DnB and grime unite for the definition of a bass music anthem. Chase & Status, Bou, IRAH, Flowdan, Trigga, and Takura remind everyone that the UK is running this shit. Not only has the track clocked over 50 million plays on Spotify alone, but they also created an exclusive VIP for Tyson Fury’s walkout against Francis Nganou (one of the biggest sporting moments of the year). Add in Chase & Status’ viral Boiler Room set, the stellar 2 Ruff, Vol. 1 album, and the fact that Flowdan was the voice of 2023, and this one was a no-brainer.
12. Peekaboo x LYNY – Like That
A collaboration that has clearly redefined the bass music scene by merging their distinct talents into one masterpiece. ‘Like That’ by PEEKABOO and LYNY is not just an immediate crowd-pleaser to rinse out during those late-night festivals, it represents a sonic journey that hooks you from the first beat flowing directly into those distorted elements we all need in our lives. The blend of PEEKABOO’s signature bass and LYNY’s unique production creates an immersive experience that resonates with the eclectic tastes of listeners worldwide. Breaking it down with that slow-tempo bassline and a vocal hook to draw listeners in, PEEKABOO and LYNY did not miss with this one in 2023.
11. Knock2 – Make U SWEAT!
Knock2 is a phenomenon in its own right. It is extremely fascinating to see how in 2023 he has managed to unite listeners from very different backgrounds under the aegis of a sound like his, which blends electro and bass house influences with big room atmospheres. ‘Make U SWEAT!’, a single included on his ROOM202 EP, was quite divisive upon its release. There were those who liked it, but also those who accused it of being “yet another formulaic rehash” of Knock2’s sound. Here at FUXWITHIT we belong to the first category and from the very beginning we loved the original and exuberant personality of ‘Make U SWEAT!’ And seeing Knock2’s numbers, both in terms of streams and attendance at his shows, I’d say we’re in good company.
10. ISOxo – dontstopme!
At this point, ISOxo’s name is practically synonymous with the new wave of electronic trap. Thousands of words have already been spent chronicling the incredible rise of this very young talent so we’ll get straight to the point. ‘dontstopme!’ is the most successful track from his debut album kidsgonemad!, a pure manifesto of his sound and a freaking, stunning banger. All these elements, plus his phenomenal year in terms of live shows (not to mention he mixed and mastered Skrillex’s ‘Good Space’), have brought the San Diego native producer to this position on our list. If trap is alive and doing well, we all have to thank ISOxo. Period.
9. TroyBoi x Mr. Carmack – Makin Moves
TroyBoi’s Say Less EP was a cultural zeitgeist moment for trap fans this year. Featuring the likes of Stooki Sound, UZ, Hucci, and Mr. Carmack, the EP marked a reunion for some of the most prominent pioneers of the genre. ‘Makin Moves,’ the final track off the EP with Mr. Carmack, is a groovy, swingy treat that really evokes the kind of sound design that we haven’t heard much of since the Renaissance era of trap in the 2010s. The gritty drops and hard-hitting 808s in this track will make your head spin. Hopefully we get to see some more top-tier collaborations like this one from some of the OGs in the scene.
8. RL Grime (feat. 070 Shake) – Pour Your Heart Out
Off RL Grime’s brand new album, PLAY, ‘Pour Your Heart’ represented the album’s major aura and spirit in many ways. Foreshadowing its exciting, unique, and exquisite nature through raw organic tones, vocals, and overall execution. And 070 Shake’s beautiful vocals weave a warm and brisk blanket over the spectrum. Together with RL’s signature melodies and structure, this single really does take you back to his beginnings while showcasing a major evolution in his creations and techniques. A broad and delectable nature all around. Honoring the full album to the highest degree. Making this one of his best releases of the year.
7. Nitepunk – Too Hot To Touch
Nitepunk is undoubtedly one of the names at the forefront of the bass music movement. He has been working his way up for years and 2023 has consolidated his position among the greatest. His debut album, HUMAN, is one of the most impressive projects of the year and could easily have monopolized this list. ‘Too Much Too Handle’ is a mind-blowing journey into the electro-punk realm of Nitepunk. Raw, complex, almost labyrinthine yet clean and perfectly balanced, ‘Too Much Too Handle’ is a memorable achievement not only for Nitepunk but for the entire bass music scene.
6. G Jones – Daydreams
G Jones’ sophomore album Paths was among the best albums released this year. It solidified the artist as one of the great innovators within the realm of bass music and showed everyone his limitless ingenuity. Perhaps the biggest surprise of the project was the omission of ‘Daydreams’ from the ensemble, as it was released as a single but cut from the album. Nonetheless, while the album is full of gems, ‘Daydreams’ stands out as a hit among the rest of G Jones’ 2023 material. From the hypnotizingly beautiful introduction to the electrifying take on future bass, to the quintessential G Jones flair, ‘Daydreams’ showcases yet another side of G Jones’ multifaceted approach to creating art. The track is exquisite and is more than deserving of a spot in our top 10.
5. salute x Sammy Virji – Peach
These two British mad lads are really helping to carry UKG this year. ‘Peach,’ garnering millions of streams just on its own, is a standout collaboration. With its nearly minute-and-a-half intro before the melody kicks in, the song hits like a Mack truck. The bright and poppy vocal samples are like a chorus of songbirds humming over the bouncy drums. The key change later in the track keeps you on your toes and prevents any part of the production from sounding stale. The whole thing just feels good to listen to and will have any dancefloor breaking out in smiles.
4. Drake x J. Cole – First Person Shooter
BIG AS THE WHAT!? Drake & J. Cole back on a track for the first time in a decade!? Yeah this is as big as they hype it up to be. Continuing Cole’s run of murderous features ‘First Person Shooter’ sees his pen sharp as ever. The pair trade verses while reminding everyone that they are two of the greatest of their generation.. and all time. While Cole gets off the harder bars, Drake brings his hitmaking magic to bring the cut to the next level. The track saw Drake tie Michael Jackson with the most No. 1 songs in Billboard Hot 100 History, gave Cole his long-overdue first Billboard #1, clocked over a hundred million streams in two months, featured a next-level visual, and sparked one the biggest joint tours in recent history. ‘First Person Shooter’ is the rap smash of the year.
3. Hamdi x Princess Superstar – Counting
After exploding onto the scene with one of biggest anthems of last year with ‘Skanka (our #2 song last year) Hamdi proved his staying power with some of the most exhilarating sets of year, an exceptional EP on Deadbeats, and you guessed it, another absolute belter! ‘Counting’ alongside Princess Superstar pairs sexy, addictive, and absurdly catchy countdown lyrics with the low-end heavy 140 sound Hamdi has helped bring to the masses. The poppy and sweet energy of Princess Superstar is perfectly countered by the absolutely filthy backing for a sound that shouldn’t work this well, but it does. This is the second consecutive top 3 placement for Hamdi and we wouldn’t be surprised if he has another next year. Hamdi is the future.
2. pinkpantheress & Ice Spice – Boy’s a liar Pt. 2
Both pinkpantheress and Ice Spice are major icons within the music industry. Making countless amounts of moves and hits within this year, their powerful and monumental abilities have skyrocketed them to the top. Especially from their legendary collaboration, ‘Boy’s a liar Pt.2.’
Blowing up everywhere possible, this track does a fantastic job of combining both of their energies and making them flourish on a whole new level. Adding Ice Spice’s confident and radiant vocals to an already pop masterpiece creates an extra layer of sauce across this top-tier dish of frequencies. Not to mention it’s co-produced by Mura Masa! The track’s dance-infused spirit elevates the vision completely and continues to impact many music lovers across the world. Gaining even more popularity by the day (735 million+ streams and counting on Spotify alone). The bubbly and elegant sound design with those gentle drums will make anyone want to dance or bop their head wherever they are. It’s just a wonderful feel-good tune.
2023 was the year of Skrillex and Flowdan, so it’s only fitting the two take the number spot. While ‘Rumble’ may have felt like the more obvious choice, we half-jokingly gave it the #1a spot last year ahead of its official release date and to be honest it felt like a bigger record in 2022 than it did this year. There’s no shortage of Skrillex cuts that could’ve taken top position but ‘Badders’ just feel right. Skrillex and Flowdan’s winning formula dominated the year and the addition of underground favorites PEEKABO and G-REX only made it that much more enticing. 2023 saw PEEKABOO unleashing his stellar debut album and G-REX has been steadily killing the scene.
‘Badders’ was the tune of 2023. The production is exceptionally clean, yet so damn filthy. The bassline is recognizable from a block away, the sound design is impeccable, and every subtle detail is fine-tuned to create the masterful anthem. Flowdan commands the track with verses that are infectious, addictive, and razor-sharp. From festivals to stadiums and dank basement clubs, ‘Badders’ rang out as the year’s underground anthem with just enough mainstream appeal to command millions of plays online.
FUXWITHIT Top 50 Songs of 2023 Playlist
Written by Alessio, Alshaan, Braden, Colin, John & Steph