Album: N/A
Producer: Cass Lowe, Jerker Hansson

Charli XCX had one of the best years of her career in 2017, all without releasing a straightforward full-length. Instead she dropped one of the year's best pop records out of nowhere in Number One Angel and wrapped up the end of the year with Pop 2, both unofficial-ish mixtapes that saw Charli collaborating with a murderer's row of guest stars, from Carly Rae Jepson to Cupcakke. The brightest moment of her startlingly strong 2017 was "Boys," an ebullient ode to daydreaming that drew its strength from its restraint. Charli tried on a lot of hats this year—proving in the process that she's pop's most versatile star—but this is the one that fit the best. —Brendan Klinkenberg