Dua Lipa has quickly become one of pop music’s most successful acts to come out of the UK in recent years. The British singer already boasts two No.1 singles, 11 top 10 singles, three Grammy Awards, three BRIT Awards, and billions of streams on Spotify in just a small space of time.
Her most recent LP, Future Nostalgia, was highly anticipated, particularly after her 2017 self-titled debut and took her career to new heights. The record became one of the most popular and critically acclaimed releases of 2020, earning her a nomination at last year’s Mercury Prize Award.
For this year’s Grammy Awards, Lipa took home the Best Pop Vocal Album award for the LP, proving once again that she is one of the UK’s leading ladies and is all set to take over the world.
Future Nostalgia was first released on March 27, 2020, and consisted of 11 tracks. The era has evolved over the past year. Along with a remix album, Club Future Nostalgia, Lipa treated fans to a deluxe version, titled The Moonlight Edition, on February 11, 2021, which includes a total of 19 tracks.
In honor of Lipa’s success over the past year, here is a ranking of all the tracks from worst to best. Side note: Levitating featuring Da Baby won’t count separately.
18. Not My Problem (feat. JID)
All you need to do is listen to this song once and you will know why its at the bottom of the list.
17. Good In Bed
Good In Bed instantly drew comparisons to Lily Allen due to its witty and playful lyrics. However, it is definitely the weakest track on the original release. On the plus side, the Zach Witness & Gen Hoshino Remix, which samples Neneh Cherry’s iconic Buffalo Stance, on Club Future Nostalgia is a more pleasurable listen.
16. Un Dia (One Day) with J Balvin, Bad Bunny, and Tainy
A star-studded line-up of acts on one song. It’s a nice track, but just not top tier and was probably created solely for streaming purposes.
15. Boys Will Be Boys
Boys Will Be Boys is pretty much the only real slow number to be heard on the original Future Nostalgia release. It made complete sense to put this song at the end of the tracklisting and has a very beautiful stripped-back production that finishes the album on a thought-provoking note.
Boys Will Be Boys is one of the songs closest to Dua’s heart and lyrically tackles an important message. However, it just doesn’t remain a highlight.
In a 2020 interview with Vogue Australia, Lipa discussed the meaning behind the personal song.
“For me [the growing pains of what it’s like to be a girl] was walking home from school and putting keys through my knuckles … So much of the human experience for women revolves around men; how they make us feel, whether that is good or bad. Girls have to go through so much. You cover up yourself to avoid confrontation from men, avoid sexual harassment, people throwing words or catcalling. We change our ways to fit somebody else’s lifestyle. It’s really sad.”
14. Pretty Please
On first listen, Pretty Please stands out for all the wrong reasons. After a euphoric rush of bops, Pretty Please slows down the energy halfway through and almost ruins the mood. However, once you get over that, you realize that Pretty Please is a funky track that sounds like an ode to the late Prince. During Lipa’s virtual Studio 2054 concert, this song was pleasantly a highlight.
13. Break My Heart
A lot of people are probably going to potentially question why this hit song is so far down the list. But quite frankly, Break My Heart is just an all-round great pop song that is perfect for radio. It’s a bop. It has a great music video. It’s catchy. It just isn’t a favorite of mine.
And yes, Miss Lipa. You should have stayed at home.
12. Future Nostalgia
The album title track appears to not be a fan-favorite and doesn’t seem to get the love it deserves. Its funky and futuristic production sets the tone of the LP incredibly well and is one of Lipa’s most experiential songs to date. The lyrics discuss themes of feminism and self-reflection while being tongue-in-cheek at the same time.
11. We’re Good
We’re Good was the lead single for the album’s reissue and doesn’t really fit in with Lipa’s previous disco theme. However, it has the most catchy and karaoke-style chorus that demands to be belted out. The sultry and tropical song probably won’t go down as one of her most legendary singles but is likely to remain a little gem in her discography.
10. Prisoner (Miley Cyrus feat. Dua Lipa)
Prisoner is ultimately a song that is a part of Miley Cyrus’ Plastic Hearts album and only ended up on the deluxe of Future Nostalgia because it was a success. But, who is complaining?
Cyrus invited Lipa into her glam-rock era while both songstresses were at their creative peak. Prisoner is basically what NME described it as: “a disco-punk anthem that goes off like a cherry bomb.” It’s tough, glamorous, and feisty. The ’80s-inspired track showcased both of their gritty tones and proved to be a risk worth taking.
9. That Kind Of Woman
That Kind Of Woman hears Lipa return to the “dark pop” sound she used to describe her music as during the earlier days of her career. The song features the most perfect chorus and could easily serve as a single.
8. Fever with Angèle
Fever with Belgian singer Angèle is one sensual bop that deserved way more attention. The 2-minute-30 song is a melodic slice of bilingual pop that is definitely one of Lipa’s more sexy numbers. The collab became Angèle’s first song to be introduced to English-speaking audiences and showcased Lipa as an artist who is able to dip into any genre.
Hallucinate is one of Lipa’s biggest bangers and is an obvious standout from first listen. Critics compared the song to Madonna’s Confessions On A Dancefloor era, but I initially thought of her album track Impressive Instant from 2000’s Music album. Hallucinate pays homage to the ’90s house anthems and is filled with sugar rush energy from beginning to end.
6. If It Ain’t Me
The original recording of If It Ain’t Me featured former Fifth Harmony member Normani. However, she was left off of the released version. If It Ain’t Me fits in perfectly with the disco/retro theme the era started off as and should really have been included on the album from the very beginning. If It Ain’t Me was made for the dancefloor and is another song that would go down well as a single.
5. Don’t Start Now
Aaaaand here we have the song that started off the whole campaign. Don’t Start Now is a certified classic and ticks all the boxes for what a perfect pop song should sound like. The nu-disco break-up single will continue to dominate the airwaves for the next 10 years, and I’m totally here for it. And as for the accolades, they speak for themself.
4. Love Again
Love Again is quite breathtaking and is probably what I would consider the most overlooked song from the album. Lipa’s vocals sound better than ever, and the refrain near the end of the track gives me goosebumps. It’s obvious that she poured her heart out all over this song. The only thing missing is a cinematic music video.
Cool is exactly what the title is. There isn’t much to say about it other than it’s a summer bop. It’s breezy, carefree, and is the perfect dose of ’80s synth-pop.
Physical is quite literally the best Dua Lipa song. Period blank. Along with the number one choice, of course. It’s upsetting its success didn’t match Don’t Start Now as it’s a solid 10 out of 10 that was destined to be a smash.
The way the spoken pre-chorus, “Who needs to go to sleep when I got you next to me?” goes straight into “All night, I riot with you,” is next level. Its huge, bold chorus has so much energy and passion that you get such a thrill every time you hear it. Its remix with Gwen Stefani is also a complete vibe.
Levitating sits at the top of this list purely for the fact that I still get the same euphoric feeling nearly a year later after I listen to it. It’s literally the happiest and most upbeat song on earth. Levitating takes you to another place and is the ultimate feel-good anthem. There will be no Levitating slander in this house, as social media would say.
It was finally chosen to be a single during the second half of 2020 and received a new version with rapper DaBaby, which essentially was just as good as the original. Shame about the Madonna and Missy Elliott remix though.