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Best Stormzy Songs: 10 Grime Anthems That Earn The Crown
List & Guides

Best Stormzy Songs: 10 Grime Anthems That Earn The Crown

From chart-toppers to grime bangers, the best Stormzy songs showcase the rapper’s cultural impact and prove why he is the king of UK hip-hop.

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By the time he was in his late 20s, the London-based rapper and songwriter Stormzy had already carved his name into the annals of British hip-hop history. With the best Stormzy songs making him a key figure in the evolution of UK grime, the rapper’s meteoric rise to fame has been hugely inspiring to millions of fans in a way that transcends racial boundaries.

Emerging from the underground music scene in South London, Stormzy was inspired by grime ever since it originated in the early 2000s, largely thanks to pioneers such as Dizzee Rascal and Wiley. As part of the next generation of grime artists to pick up the baton, he continued the genre’s legacy of fusing elements of hip-hop, electronic music and dancehall to create a distinctively British sound. As a result, Stormzy’s powerful and socially conscious lyrics, coupled with his undeniable talent and authentic voice, have seen him lauded as one of the most influential Black musicians of his generation. Most notably, Stormzy’s historic headline performance at the 2019 Glastonbury Festival led to him being embraced as a British national treasure almost overnight.

Here we explore the best Stormzy songs across his career so far, each one earning him the right to wear that crown…

Listen to the best of Stormzy here, and check out the best Stormzy songs, below.

10: Cold (from ‘Gang Signs & Prayer’, 2017)

Released in February 2017 as the second single from Stormzy’s debut album, Gang Signs & Prayer, Cold immediately grabs listeners by the draw-strings of their hoodie with its raw, unapologetic energy and icy synth blips. Peaking at No.21 in the UK and fondly regarded by Stormzy himself as a creative turning point, it sees the London-based rapper inspire his listeners with a message of unapologetic Black pride (“All my young Black kings rise up, man, this is our year”). “I figured out how to approach grime differently,” Stormzy explained in an interview with The FADER. “It isn’t a political ‘conscious rap’ song – it’s a bubbly, fun, vibrant grime track. But with that one message, it becomes bigger than a song, it becomes bigger than me.” With its menacing beat and hard-hitting lyrics, Cold cuts deeper than a shard of ice, largely owing to Stormzy’s fierce delivery and unprecedented coolness.

9: Hide & Seek (from ‘This Is What I Mean’, 2022)

Peaking at No.7 in the UK upon its release as the lead single from Stormzy’s third album, This Is What I Mean, the Afrobeat-tinged soul ballad Hide & Seek memorably features Nigerian singers Oxlade and Teni as well as UK R&B singer Ayanna. Deeply heartfelt, with lyrics posing the question of how to reignite a romantic relationship, the song was inspired by the likes of Whitney Houston and Stevie Wonder. “Let’s respect the legends, but in terms of just how music can strike a chord in people, and that really hits somewhere that you can’t really describe,” Stormzy explained in an interview with Hits Radio. “That’s what this song does with me, and I just hope it does the same with other people.” Stormzy’s confident flow and magnetic delivery on Hide & Seek drew listeners in like never before, while the song’s introspective lyrics provided a glimpse into his personal journey and triumphs.

8: Know Me From (standalone Single, 2015)

As one of Stormzy’s earliest breakout hits, Know Me From catapulted the then 22-year-old grime sensation into the UK singles chart, its success boosted by a lo-fi music video which has gone on to rack up more than 30 million views on YouTube. Courtesy of a Zdot-produced beat previously deployed by grime godfather Wiley, Know Me From showcases Stormzy’s lyrical dexterity and unwavering self-assurance with a nod to the genre’s history (“Shout out to my big bro Wiley, that’s a badman from early”). The song’s aggressive and gut-punching beats induce an adrenaline-fuelled rush like only the best Stormzy songs can, while his razor-sharp wordplay and distinctive flow have an immediacy that instantly made him stand out from the pack. Setting the stage for his future success, Know Me From was, for many, a perfect introduction to Stormzy.

7: Wiley Flow (from ‘Heavy Is The Head’, 2019)

Yet another homage to grime pioneer Wiley, the third single released from Stormzy’s second album, Heavy Is The Head, was Wiley Flow, a decidedly modern tribute to the genre’s roots. Exemplifying his mastery of UK rap, Stormzy’s agile flow effortlessly rides the song’s pulsating beat, packing a punch with a larger-than-life display of braggadocio (“This year I’ma be a household name/I grew up in a house of pain/I don’t do it for the clout or fame”). Peaking at No.22 in the UK, Wiley Flow brilliantly showcases Stormzy’s vocal skills and leaves little doubt over his much-deserved place within the pantheon of UK grime history.

6: Blinded By Your Grace, Pt.2 (featuring MNEK) (from ‘Gang Signs & Prayer’, 2017)

Released in October 2017 as the fourth and final single from Gang Signs & Prayer, the gospel-tinged pop-rap sprawl of Blinded By Your Grace, Pt.2 offers a soulful departure from Stormzy’s more aggressive, street-wise fare. With soaring melodies and stirring harmonies underscoring Stormzy’s faith in the Almighty (“Lord I’ve been broken/Although I’m not worthy/You fixed me”), the song peaked at No.7 in the UK and remains a poignant and uplifting highlight among the best Stormzy songs. Capped off with a gospel choir that adds a heavenly touch to Stormzy’s heartfelt lyrics and impassioned delivery, Blinded By Your Grace, Pt.2, is as wholesome as it gets.

5: Own It (Featuring Ed Sheeran and Burna Boy) (from ‘Heavy Is The Head’, 2019)

Aided by infectious dancehall-tinged rhythms and catchy syncopated vocal melodies, Own It is a feel-good anthem that effortlessly blends genres and demonstrates Stormzy’s cross-cultural appeal. With guest spots reserved for Ed Sheeran and Burna Boy, the song became Stormzy’s third UK No.1 after its release, in November 2019, and amps up the rapper’s magnetic charisma to the nth degree. With over 1.8 million units sold in Britain to date, its commercial success completely went against the grain in the age of streaming, proving why Own It has more than earned its place as a modern pop classic among the best Stormzy songs.

4: Big For Your Boots (from ‘Gang Signs & Prayer’, 2017)

As one of Stormzy’s most popular tracks, Big For Your Boots became an instant grime anthem upon its release, in February 2017, and peaked at No.6 in the UK. The lead single from Gang Signs & Prayer, the song showcases Stormzy’s impeccable flow and razor-sharp lyrics, with grimy beats and a throbbing bassline creating an electrifying backdrop for his unapologetic swagger and assertive delivery. Standing the test of time as an anthemic grime banger among the best Stormzy songs, Big For Your Boots secured Stormzy’s reputation as a new and formidable voice spearheading the rise of UK rap as a genuine commercial force. Gathering over 800,000 views on YouTube in just 24 hours, it’s hard to argue with just how seismic its impact was.

3: Crown (from ‘Heavy Is The Head’, 2019)

Representing a vulnerable and more introspective side of Stormzy’s lyrical gifts, the stripped-down Crown – the second single from Heavy Is The Head – is a true jewel in the rapper’s discography. A piano-led anthem for resilience and self-empowerment, the song sees Stormzy comment on his rise to fame, as well as his subsequent embrace as a role model for Black British youth, with a deeply personal and meaningful mantra (“I tried to be grateful and count all my blessings/But heavy is the head that wears the crown”). Peaking at No.4 in the UK, it wasn’t the first time Stormzy had successfully resonated with audiences on a profound level, but it did prove just how far the London-born icon had come.

2: Shut Up (standalone single, 2015)

Originally recorded as part of a seemingly impromptu freestyle series, Shut Up became a cultural phenomenon after its release as a single in May 2015. Stormzy’s sharp, witty wordplay and incessant clapbacks (“Man try say he’s better than me/Tell my man, shut up/Mention my name in your tweets/Oi, rudeboy, shut up”), delivered with cheekily expressed relish, quickly made the track a fan favourite. Following a campaign to make the song a Christmas No.1[https://www.thisisdig.com/feature/christmas-number-ones-every-uk-singles-chart-topper/], Shut Up peaked at No.8 in the UK and successfully launched Stormzy into the pop mainstream. Guaranteeing his status as one of grime’s finest talents, Shut Up embodies the essence of grime, its energetic flow, heavy bassline and unapologetic attitude ranking highly among the very best Stormzy songs.

1: Vossi Bop (from ‘Heavy Is The Head’, 2019)

With undeniable energy and infectious enthusiasm, Vossi Bop skyrocketed its way into the UK No.1 spot following its release in April 2019. The lead single from Heavy Is The Head, the song’s upbeat tempo and catchy hooks made it an instant crowd-pleaser, as did Stormzy’s sharp and witty lyrics, packed with cultural references (“My bruddas don’t dab, we just Vossi bop”) that capture the zeitgeist of contemporary UK rap (“When I’m James Bond, tryna live my movie like I’m Idris”). Confirming Stormzy as a true icon of the genre, Vossi Bop was a game-changing moment in the history of British hip-hop, and that’s why it tops our list of the best Stormzy songs.

Find out where Stormy’s 2019 Glastonbury Festival appearance ranks among the best Glastonbury performances of all time.

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