As Gen Z’s answer to Madonna, Dua Lipa became one of the UK’s biggest pop stars before even turning 30. Pulling from a wide range of influences, irrespective of decade or genre – she has nodded to P!nk, Destiny’s Child, Radiohead, J Cole and more in her music – Lipa has created an authentic sound that stays true to herself, with her distinctive vocals remaining the impressive focal point of whatever she does. As one of the best female singers of her generation, Lipa is frequently called upon to add extra spice to other artists’ tracks, which only serves to add to her ever-growing body of work. Here, then, from solo cuts to collaborations, are the best Dua Lipa songs so far…
20: No Lie (Sean Paul, featuring Dua Lipa) (from the ‘Mad Love The Prequel’ EP, 2018)
For her fist collaborative single, Dua Lipa stepped into unknown territory with the Jamaican dancehall icon Sean Paul, and scored her first UK Top 10 in the process. The reggae-tinged tropical-house number No Lie features Lipa on the chorus, her mezzo-soprano vocals shimmering in sunset club heaven.
19: Thinking ’Bout You (from ‘Dua Lipa’, 2017)
A standout on Dua Lipa’s self-titled debut album, Thinking ’Bout You is a tranquil oasis among the album’s summer grooves and feminist anthems. The acoustic-led retro-soul ballad is a hazy ode to a lover Lipa can’t let go of, and it sees her sing with raw honesty about coping mechanisms such as drugs, alcohol and excessive work. Taking versatility in her stride, the fledgling star delivers her skilful lyrics with astonishing vocals on a track that still stands among the best Dua Lipa songs.
18: Potion (with Calvin Harris and Young Thug) (from ‘Funk Wav Bounces Vol.2’, 2022)
Lipa’s second collaboration with Calvin Harris, Potion is a seductive tease that also features Young Thug. Inhaling scents of everything associated with summer, the track finds Lipa effortlessly purring her way through the song’s charming windows-down choruses while pulsing bongos and flickers of post-disco guitar capture wholesome summer vibes in the background.
17: Prisoner (Miley Cyrus, featuring Dua Lipa) (from ‘Plastic Hearts’, 2020)
Like mirror images of each other from different sides of the world, Miley Cyrus and Dua Lipa paired together in 2020 to create Prisoner. A perfect blend of Cyrus’ and Lipa’s sounds, the song is a slice of glam-rock goodness in which the two singers’ distinctive vocals bounce sumptuously off each other.
16: Lost In Your Light (featuring Miguel) (from ‘Dua Lipa’, 2017)
Though many of the best Dua Lipa songs find her guesting on tracks by other artists, Lost In Your Light is the only collaborative moment on Lipa’s debut album. With a pop-R&B soundbed that’s like a punchy dreamland for infatuated lovers, the song makes space for Miguel’s seductive vocals to dance flawlessly with Lipa’s.
15: Be The One (from ‘Dua Lipa’, 2017)
Lipa first made her mark with the dreamy pop outing Be The One, which was released as a single in 2015 before finding a home on her debut album. Glowing with iridescent hues and fresh femininity, the track was met with critical acclaim, going gold or higher in 11 countries, as well as going double-platinum in the UK.
14: Break My Heart (from ‘Future Nostalgia’, 2020)
A retro-futurist floor-filler complete with Lipa’s funkiest bass line to date, Break My Heart carried enough familiarity to ensure INXS members Andrew Farriss and Michael Hutchence were given a writing credit. A highlight of Lipa’s second album, Future Nostalgia, the song seemed to imagine what would happen it Saturday Night Fever took place in The Matrix, Lipa topping it all off with the satirical charm of her lyrics.
13: Sweetest Pie (with Megan Thee Stallion) (standalone single, 2022)
Lipa’s long-awaited collaboration with Grammy-winning rapper Megan Thee Stallion finally pulled through in the spring of 2022, proving to be yet another example of how the best Dua Lipa songs can be the result of two completely different vocal styles combining to create something sublime. With Lipa suggestively asking, “You’ve never been to heaven, have you?” against Megan’s altogether more flagrant lyrics, Sweetest Pie is an infectious hit that has listeners coming back for seconds.
12: Future Nostalgia (from ‘Future Nostalgia’, 2020)
What better way to kick-start a brand new era than opening the Future Nostalgia album with the song of the same name? Awash with futuristic synths and robotic soundbites, this 80s-inspired tune takes listeners to a new planet, where feminism rules. Characterised by a cocky spoken-word delivery in the main, and gorgeous self-assertion in a chorus that sees Lipa refer to herself as a “female alpha”, Future Nostalgia offers a refreshing burst of energy among the best Dua Lipa songs.
11: Physical (from ‘Future Nostalgia’, 2020)
Cannily released as a single in January 2020, Physical quickly took its place among the best workout songs. Triggering an urge to go out and buy a pair of the brightest neon leg warmers on offer and head to the gym, it’s an undeniable nod to the Olivia Newton-John song of the same name, but Lipa puts her own unique 2020s twist on the Grease star’s frothy 80s pop.
10: Don’t Start Now (from ‘Future Nostalgia’, 2020)
As the lead single from Future Nostalgia, Don’t Start Now was the perfect intro to Dua Lipa’s second phase. A nu-disco track complete with synth bursts, cowbells and 90s house-inspired keys, the song is a creative amalgamation of such influences as Bee Gees, Two Door Cinema Club and Daft Punk. Embracing the girl-boss theme of claiming independence after losing a lover, it’s a true anthem among the best Dua Lipa songs.
9: Cold Heart (Pnau Remix) (with Elton John) (from ‘The Lockdown Sessions’, 2021)
An effortlessly slick re-imagination of classic Elton John cuts for the 21st century, Cold Heart (Pnau remix) offers yet another testament to Dua Lipa’s versatility. Mashing Rocket Man, Sacrifice, Kiss The Bride and Where’s The Shoorah? together with infectious guitar, Australian dance trio Pnau came up with one of the best songs of 2021, made even better by Lipa’s gorgeous serenade of Rocket Man.
8: Love Again (from ‘Future Nostalgia’, 2020)
Built upon a sample of the song My Woman, by swing-era jazz singer Al Bowlly, with Lew Stone And His Monseigneur Band, Love Again overhauls the original 1930s number with Lipa’s patented take on nu-disco. Letting her guard down resulted in this alluring yet heart-warming dance-pop record, which takes a step back from female independence and delves into the feelings that can come with falling for someone after heartbreak. Not your average love-struck ballad, Love Again is seductive, contagious and anything but gushy.
7: Hotter Than Hell (from ‘Dua Lipa’, 2017)
The track responsible for getting Dua Lipa a record deal, Hotter Than Hell will forever remain an iconic part of her discography. Helping to define the sound of her debut album, the tropical-house track is driven by marimbas and twinkly synths while also flaunting Lipa’s confident, powerful vocals. Steamy with hot summery vibes, Hotter Than Hell brims with a self-assertion that is anything but arrogant.
6: IDGAF (from ‘Dua Lipa’, 2017)
Stepping away from the tropics, IDGAF is something of an anomaly on Dua Lipa’s debut album. Basic in the sense that the main elements are an electric guitar riff with a military beat, the track shines a light on Lipa’s more left-field musical heroes. A compelling breakup song that tirelessly hails female independence, its status as one of the best Dua Lipa songs will be forever assured.
5: Boys Will Be Boys (from ‘Future Nostalgia’, 2020)
Placed as the closing track on Future Nostalgia as a matter of importance, Boys Will Be Boys is Lipa’s most poignant song, addressing as it does toxic masculinity and how society continues to treat women as inferior citizens. Complete with orchestral strings, marching-band drums and backing vocals from the Stagecoach Epsom Performing Arts Choir, it’s undoubtedly the most striking track on Lipa’s second album, helping to enable conversations about the abuse women continue to be subjected to. With lyrics that draw upon universal experiences – such as holding keys between your fingers, covering up your body and walking home before dusk – it’s a song that solidly asserts Lipa’s status as a feminist icon within the music industry.
4: Electricity (with Silk City, Diplo and Mark Ronson) (from the ‘Electricity’ EP, 2018)
A collaboration seemingly tailor-made for the singer, Dua Lipa’s partnership with Silk City, Diplo and Mark Ronson produced sparks with Electricity. A perfect slice of disco house, the track couldn’t have been made for anyone other than Lipa to sing on. Piano-led, with bursts of 90s-style synthesisers, it overflows with contagious dance energy and more than deserved its Grammy win for Best Dance Recording.
3: Levitating (from ‘Future Nostalgia’, 2020)
Arguably the biggest success from Future Nostalgia, Levitating conjures a disco paradise that continues to entice new fans on the daily. Heavy with psychedelic flourishes in both the lyrics and the music, the song enhances the whole concept behind Future Nostalgia. Collating an array of influences from the 70s through to the 90s, Lipa fashioned a seemingly mystical balance of electro-pop, dance and funk music – an unconventional mix for a moment of pop perfection among the best Dua Lipa songs.
2: One Kiss (with Calvin Harris) (standalone single, 2018)
The song of the summer in 2018, Calvin Harris’ One Kiss felt monumental on release, and it remains one of the finest laidback club tracks of the 21st century. Driven by 90s house beats, the song is an exceptional mix of nostalgic house rhythms with contemporary touches that ensured its relevance at the end of the 2010s and into the next decade. Distorted guitar runs and manipulated synths carry the track, alongside the rich feature of Dua Lipa’s guest vocals.
1: New Rules (from ‘Dua Lipa’, 2017)
A landmark song celebrating female empowerment, the critically acclaimed New Rules was a gargantuan success that assisted Dua Lipa’s transition from promising newcomer into the triumphant artist she is today. Using a breakup as her jumping-off point, Lipa has three rules for anyone recovering from heartbreak, and delivers them in a way that isn’t just catchy, but is actually proactive. Sticking to the tropical-house style that defined much of her debut album, New Rules emerged as the strongest cut on the record, and it remains its creator’s most influential track, easily taking the top spot in our list of the best Dua Lipa songs.
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