The 10 Best Lorde Songs of All-Time


Lorde is a New Zealand singer-songwriter who rose to prominence in the 2010s. So far, she has released three studio albums in 2013, 2017, and 2021, which when combined with the rest of her work, have enabled her to claim a whole host of honors. To name an example, consider her two Grammys, both of which were earned for “Royals” in 2014. As such, it seems safe to say that Lorde will remain a name of note in the music industry for the foreseeable future.

10. Everybody Wants to Rule the World

In 1985, Tears for Fears released the single “Everybody Wants to Rule the World,” which was so successful that it became one of the English band’s signature songs. Given the name, interested individuals should have no problem guessing that it is about the lust for power plus the corruption that can be caused by power. In 2013, Lorde did a cover of “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Once again, it did very well, not least because it managed to stand out by being a darker, much moodier take on a more upbeat original.

9. Solar Power

There was a four-year gap between Lorde’s second studio album Melodrama and third studio album Solar Power. As such, her first single after that gap was always going to be viewed as a comeback of sorts. There are a lot of artists who would’ve gone with something loud, energetic, or otherwise intense to make their return known. However, Lorde made a very interesting choice to go with the surprisingly relaxed title track, which is particularly noticeable because it is so different from the cynicism expressed during her adolescent years.

8. Magnets

“Magnets” is a 2015 single from the electronic duo Disclosure for which Lorde provided the vocals. Subject-wise, it is about a pair of lovers who are prevented from being together for moral reasons, which explains much about the song’s name. Regardless, “Magnets” was well-received because of its vocals, its production, and its music video, thus enabling Disclosure to reach high heights in Australia, New Zealand, and the United States.

7. Perfect Places

“Perfect Places” is known to have been inspired by some of the time that Lorde has spent in New York City. In particular, she mentioned riding on Brooklyn Bridge as well as sitting in the Uptown Manhattan subway in the summertime. Something that can make for a very strong impression for a number of reasons to say the least. In any case, while Lorde apparently struggled with the recording for “Perfect Places,” the result proved to be more than worthwhile in the end.

6. Green Light

As breakup songs go, “Green Light” is one of the better ones out there. That might sound like rather tepid praise, but the sheer number of breakup songs makes it that much more difficult for them to stand out. Certainly, “Green Light” did its job of heralding Lorde’s second studio album Melodrama, thus making it very clear that she wasn’t going away anytime soon.

5. Yellow Flicker Beat

“Yellow Flicker Beat” is a pop song rich in metaphor. Something that earned Lorde a lot of praise at the time, particularly since she was still in her teens. Subject-wise, “Yellow Flicker Beat” is about the rise of Katniss Everdeen, the protagonist of The Hunger Games. As such, it should come as no surprise to learn that the song was meant for the soundtrack of the third installment in the movie adaptations.

4. Biting Down

Lorde started making music at a young age. This can be seen in how The Love Club EP came out in 2012. “Biting Down” is one of the more memorable songs from the EP. Music-wise, it isn’t quite capable of matching up to every single one of its successors. Instead, it is most interesting because it is a powerful promise of potential that we now know will be fulfilled. Simply put, “Biting Down” makes it very clear that Lorde’s rise was no coincidence.

3. Buzzcut Season

“Buzzcut Season” is a song from Lorde’s debut studio album Pure Heroine that was used as a promotional single. It wasn’t the most successful of her songs. However, “Buzzcut Season” can claim to be one of the more interesting, not least because it can be interpreted in numerous ways. Some people believe it to be about ignoring everything going on in the rest of the world in preference for escapism. Other people have chosen to see it as an acceptance of growing up in the suburbs. There are even people who believe “Buzzcut Season” to be about being caught up in an armed conflict, though this is a more literal reading than most.

2. Tennis Court

Much has been said about “Tennis Court.” For example, the title itself is apparently a symbol of nostalgia, which is connected to Lorde’s memories of her hometown. Meanwhile, the rest is a commentary upon fame. Something that makes it fitting that “Tennis Court” was released after the massive hit that was the “Royals.” Besides this, the song is also interesting because of its strangely minimalistic music video, which did work in the sense that it puts the emphasis on the song’s vocals as well as lyrics.

1. Royals

“Royals” is one of Lorde’s best-known songs. As mentioned earlier, it won a couple of Grammys. Unsurprisingly, that means that the song met with incredible commercial success as well, as shown by how it sold more than 10 million units on a worldwide basis. In hindsight, “Royals” is amusing because it is a song about the singer’s dissatisfaction with the state of the pop landscape that has since gone on to change the pop landscape itself. There are a lot of people who credit this song’s success for opening doors for other pop artists who were once considered too alternative to appeal to the mainstream.

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