It's been a winter that many of us would rather forget but the sunshine is coming and so is freedom in some states that have been in lockdown. That means, it's time to start thinking about the songs that are going to define our summer. If this is to be the summer of our lives, our breakout, then we're going to have to make sure the soundtrack is flawless.
Here are the songs we think could define the Summer of '21/'22.
The Kid LAROI - Stay (w/ Justin Bieber)
It’s been the biggest song in the world for a minute know but it ain’t going anywhere. The Kid LAROI and Justin Bieber’s pulsating, blockbuster pop song is still the most streamed song in Australia right now and that’s likely to continue well into the summer. It’s bursting at the seams with energy which may be exactly what we need to kick us right into the summer mood.
Elton John & Dua Lipa - Cold (PNAU Remix)
For the past two summers, at least, Dua Lipa has given us absolute anthems and she’s not leaving us in the cold this year. Well, she has given us Cold but it's a warm sort of cold. Teaming with Elton John and remixed by PNAU, Cold brings together three classic Elton songs are reimagines them for 2021. It's a disco-tinged bop and the sound of every sunset dancefloor this summer.
Lil Nas X - That’s What I Want
Lil Nas X has defined just about every season this year but there's something distinctly warm about his latest hit That's What I Want. The standout pop track from his debut record MONTERO is an acoustic guitar-driven bop with a chorus that bleeds sunshine. This summer you're getting someone to love, promise.
The Anxiety - Meet Me At Our Spot
We love a sleeper hit. Pop/punk is back in a big way this year driven by Olivia Rodrigo's Good 4 U and it's got people digging back further to uncover some forgotten gems. Meet Me At Our Spot was on Willow Smith and Tyler Cole's 2020 album but it's found a new life on TikTok. It's the perfect song of the summer tapping into warm, early '00s nostalgia when Good Charlotte and Simple Plan reigned supreme.
Doja Cat - Woman
The song of the summer around the rest of the world was Doja Cat and SZA's Kiss Me More but now that summer is rolling around here we've moved on. Woman is now the sound of your summer days - a charismatic, empowering anthem that delves into elements of Afropop. It's impossibly sleek and tailor-made for a beachside dance.
Glass Animals - I Don’t Wanna Talk (I Just Wanna Dance)
Last year's Hottest 100 winner Heatwaves is still doing big number globally but Glass Animals may have another winner up their sleeve with I Don't Wanna Talk (I Just Wanna Dance). This one has tempo on its side, coming through as one of Glass Animals most danceable cuts. The mantra is also perfect for right now. After months of chatting to relatives over Zoom, we're done. It's time to dance.
merci, mercy - Winnie Crush
If you're listening to triple j right now, chances are you've heard merci, mercy's Winnie Crush a handful of times. The honest reliability of merci's music has captured the attention of many and she's taken a leap forward on this release. It's an anthem about poor self-care, delivered with a glittery disco beat making the hard truths all the more palatable.
Billie Eilish - Happier Than Ever
The ukelele at the start of this song says summer but don't be fooled. Happier Than Ever, the best song on Eilish's second album of the same name, may give off relaxing beachside vibes but it's not about that. It's all about the final two minutes where it explodes into a pop/punk epic. Everyone is going to have steam to let off this summer and yelling into the void may be just what you need. There's truly nothing more cathartic than screaming, "You made me hate this city!"
Central Cee - Obsessed With You
British MC Central Cee has been building steam with a handful of independent releases but he's hit the big time with his remix of PinkPantheress' Just for me. It's nearly cracked the Top 30 and we have a pretty strong feeling that it's going to be everywhere this summer. Coming in at just under 2 minutes though, you're going to have to hit repeat a few times.
Budjerah - Talk (Feat. MAY-A)
Budjerah really broke through this year with his feature on PNAU's Stranger Love and now he's simply showing off with his new track Talk. The collaboration with fellow Australian up-and-comer MAY-A is a slam-dunk. It's a soulful, slippery tune that showcases Budjerah's impossibly smooth vocals. If you need to zone out in the heat this summer, this is the one.
Lorde - Mood Ring
Lorde cruelly dropped an album about the sun in the middle of Australian winter but now it's our time to experience the songs in all their glory. Mood Ring is the one that makes us feel warmest thanks to those airy guitars and featherlight beats. It's got just the right amount of nostalgia and melancholy for a Lorde song without blocking out the sunlight.
Charli XCX - Good Ones
Charli XCX is having her main pop girl moment and Good Ones is an absolute smash. The '80s-tinged banger is the sound that's going to soundtrack your nights on sticky dancefloors. It's not for a daytime sesh, it's for your after-midnight return to the clubs when you're clutching a vodka lime soda and unleashing once again.
RÜFÜS DU SOL - On My Knees
We may have been stripped of many festivals this year but that doesn't mean we can't dream. RÜFÜS' incoming new album is going to help us do that bolstered by their pulsating new single On My Knees. It immediately makes you recall those hands-in-the-air moments when euphoria seems so toucheable. We can't wait to hear this one in a sea of people.