Best 25 Songs of 2023

Our favourite songs of 2023 by some of the best unsigned and emerging artists from all around the world

From emotionally-charged tracks, to punk-fuelled anthems and soul-enriching R&B tracks, 2023 has gifted us a captivating array of sonic experiences. Our list of the best 25 songs of the year features some of the best unsigned and emerging artists from all around the world. These songs are like the background music to our year, sticking with us and adding a special touch to the moments that made it more memorable.

You can stream these tracks in our primary playlist, THE NÜ, which boasts an additional 25 songs from our friends and frequent collaborator, Music Mukbang.

1: Blair Lee — Underdog

Canadian singer-songwriter Blair Lee crafted a poignant masterpiece with her single ‘Underdog’. The track effortlessly taps into a wellspring of emotions, evoking nostalgic memories of carefree childhood days spent playing outdoors with friends. Lee’s breathtaking vocal delivery, set against an acoustic backdrop, creates an intimate connection with listeners. ‘Underdog’ has the power to bring both tears and joy, making it, in our opinion, the best song of the year. We hope Blair Lee experiences a well-deserved breakthrough in the coming year.

2: Max Fry — zombie

Hailing from the vibrant music scene of Florida, newcomer Max Fry delivered the standout anthem of the year. ‘zombie’ is built over a captivating production, intricately woven with unforgettable melodies and an infectious energy that practically demands a fist-pumping response— a flawless match for skate park gatherings and mosh pits.

3: Tyrer — Safe

London-based singer-songwriter Tyrer delivered an emotionally-driven track that seamlessly combines R&B and indie influences. ‘Safe’ is a well-crafted track that boasts some of the most captivating melodies we’ve heard this year. Undoubtedly a hidden gem, Tyrer’s talent calls for wider recognition in the music industry.

4: safesp8ce — quiet, i can’t think

London-based alternative artist safesp8ce made her epic debut with ‘quiet, i can’t think’. Showcasing her impressive vocal prowess and built over a production that effortlessly blends electronic, rock, and indie influences, she explores her life as an autistic person in a neurotypical world— resonating strongly with those who appreciate unfiltered honesty and raw emotion in music.

5: The KTNA — Frenemies

Manchester-based twin duo The KTNA delivered a compelling R&B experience with their soul-infused track ‘Frenemies’. Beyond its captivating sound, the song serves as a poignant reflection of finding inner strength when friendships turn into something more than just enemies.

6: Amir Obe — CRYBABY

Following a three-year absence, Detroit/New York-based artist Amir Obe made a stellar comeback with his debut album after. Built on top of a trap-infused production, the standout track, ‘CRYBABY’, immerses listeners in a late-night vibe and expertly delves into the complexities of post-breakup emotions— a topic where Amir often and consistently showcases his expertise.

7: Kamal. — free flow

London-based rising star Kamal., made a lasting impression with his captivating track ‘free flow’ earlier this year. His smooth vocals and compelling lyrics gracefully explore the world of young love, crafting an enchanting musical experience.

8: Humane The Moon — I Saw A Dog

London-based newcomer Humane The Moon showcased his immense potential with his second single ‘I Saw A Dog’. The song, penned during his daily commute home from work amid personal struggles, took a positive turn one day when he saw a man kneeling by his dog, prompting a smile. This punk-infused track resonates with dog lovers around the world, offering a comforting melody for those going through tough times.

9: Tj Loft — No Pressure

One of Australia’s best kept secrets, Tj Loft, released yet another impressive song that’s been on heavy rotation. With its captivating production, compelling vocal performance, and relatable lyrics, Loft keeps listeners hooked from start to finish. He consistently delivers indie brilliance, and this track is no exception— a must-listen.

10: SOMOH — Favourite


In a standout release, London’s bedroom pop artist SOMOH unveiled her best song yet, ‘Favourite’. Boasting a captivating vocal performance and stellar production, the track expertly delves into the struggle of seeking validation by fixing everyone else’s problems while neglecting one’s own.

11: YAOUNDÉBOXINGCLUB x tmdistant — Did It My Way

London-based French-Cameroonian indie artist YAOUNDÉBOXINGCLUB and Essex-based alternative artist tmdistant joined forces to create one of the best collaborations of the year. ‘Did It My Way’ is an anthemic indie pop track that serves as an empowering anthem for those who’ve felt like outcasts, encouraging them to proudly sing along with unapologetic pride.

12: Aziya — chain

London-based alternative artist Aziya once again showcased her impressive talents with ‘chain’, a compelling track that highlights her prowess as a lyricist, vocalist, and producer. The track is a powerful piece aimed at creating a welcoming and inclusive space.

13: ALBI. — LVR GRL

Brisbane’s electro-pop sensation ALBI., unleashed one of the most empowering offerings of the year with ‘LVR GRL’. Her vocals elegantly flow over the electronic-centred production, delivering lyrics that champion the importance of prioritising oneself. In a musical landscape filled with self-empowerment anthems, ‘LVR GRL’ distinguishes itself with its infectious energy and the newcomer’s captivating vocal delivery.

14: Samaria — tight rope

Oakland’s rising R&B star Samaria once again earns her place on our year-end list with the outstanding release ‘tight rope’. She bares her soul on the track and delivers a stunning vocal performance— delving into themes of self-worth and the tendency to engage in self-destructive patterns for the sake of others in relationship.

15: Scarlet House — Over

Charlotte, North Carolina-based one man band Scarlet House made waves on TikTok throughout the year. His consistent posts not only promoted current releases but also teased upcoming tracks. Among those tracks, ‘Over’ emerged as a standout, delivering a brilliant sound that harks back to the nostalgia of alternative rock and nu metal. The track resonates with listeners in search of a unique and memorable musical experience, offering a refreshing appeal that stands out.

16: Amira Elfeky — Coming Down

LA-based artist Amira Elfeky made her major record label debut with the dark and moody ‘Coming Down’. This breathtaking track, resonating with fans of early 2000s rock/metal, features Elfeky’s rich vocals seamlessly weaving in and out of the atmospheric production. The result is a captivating experience that marks a promising start in the music scene for the Connecticut native.

17: Fimiguerrero — DND

London-based rapper Fimiguerrero stands out as one of the most promising emerging artists in the UK, with 2023 proving to be a successful year for him. Amid his notable tracks, ‘DND’ remains in heavy rotation. This energetic track puts his razor-sharp and rapid-fire delivery on full display, instantly grabbing attention as it flows effortlessly over the pounding production.

18: jite — Isolation

In her debut single, ‘isolation’, newcomer jite brilliantly displays vulnerability over a chill house beat and sparse guitar track. With dreamy and gentle vocals, she reveals her inner psyche with an intimacy reminiscent of bedroom pop.

19: MINOE — Cherry

Canadian vocal powerhouse MINOE made her DNü debut earlier this year with the amazing ‘Cherry’. The track evoking vibes similar to another favourite of ours, BANKS, is an empowering dark pop gem. It captures MINOE’s inner struggle with demons, culminating in a triumphant and overall, breathtaking track that resonates with listeners.

20: Carly Gibert — DROPPING SEEDS

Seamlessly fusing elements of bedroom pop, rap and R&B, LA-based Spanish artist Carly Gibert impressed with her standout track ‘DROPPING SEEDS’. The captivating blend of genres instantly caught our attention, and the accompanying music video is a must-watch, adding an extra dimension to the overall experience.

21: LULU. — Save Me

London-based newcomer LULU. delivered a brilliant track that deeply resonates with anyone grappling with the challenges of the current cost of living crisis and longing for divine intervention. Her soulful lyrics and delivery instantly captivate, allowing listeners to feel every word and melody.

22: Keni Titus — American Spirit

LA-based singer-songwriter Keni Titus had a standout year, and her track ‘american spirit’ ranks among our favourites. This deeply heartfelt and emotional song explores the depths of a powerful heartbreak, serving as a cathartic release of pent-up emotions. She brings these feelings to life with her storytelling lyricism, making ‘american spirit’ a resonant and memorable track.

23: LUCA — Best in me

Harlem, New York-based artist LUCA hit all the right notes with his captivating track ‘Best in me’. With vocals that shine brilliantly, LUCA effortlessly draws listeners in, keeping them hooked from start to finish.

24: Love Spells — Over and Over

Houston, Texas-based indie artist Love Spells made an impact with their emotionally-charged track ‘Over and Over’. The track, laced with sticky melodies throughout, expertly explores a broken relationship, instantly creating a connection with listeners.

25: Kylo — Closer

Canadian singer-songwriter Kylo brought us a dreamy masterpiece with ‘Closer’. Filled with beautiful melodies and set against a stunning production, the song expresses the desire for emotional closeness in a physical relationship.

Stream these songs below:

Featured Image: Blair Lee

Photo Credit: Eric Richards

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