Music is a magical thing. It can stimulate our most powerful emotions, and it can also make us puke. As the music industry continues to disappear up its own butthole on the year Bob Dylan got the Nobel Prize, we come together as a nation to crown the ten worst songs that were released in 2016. Some omissions you might want to tell us about: Stressed Out by Twenty One Pilots was last year, but don’t worry, though. We have ten other tracks that are just as bad if not worse.
The Worst Songs Of 2016
B.o.B – Flatline
Let’s start off with 2016’s most inexplicable rap beef – Georgia rapper B.o.B. and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson over whether the Earth is round or not. Yep, it was that kind of year. B.o.B. made headlines in January by claiming that the planet was a flat disc, despite all known scientific evidence, and when Tyson gently corrected him the rapper took to YouTube to release Flatline a seriously bizarre diss track where he blames the Jews for telling us lies about the globe. Oh, and there’s also something about “mirror lizards” in there, just in case you were worried he forgot something. The track isn’t awful on musical terms, but just the fact that this dude made it at all has to bump it on the list.
Fergie – M.I.L.F.$
Will the world ever be free of the scourge of Fergie? Ever since the Black Eyed Peas abandoned hip-hop bonafides for commercial success in the 2003, she’s been inescapable. We’re not going to say that M.I.L.F.$ is her worst song ever, because that’s a really hard bar to clear, but it’s sure awful. Celebrating everybody’s third-favorite porn genre, the singer wants to “inspire moms to have fun.” Is that really what we need right now? The track is instrumentally idiotic, built around a droning trap beat with the bass foregrounded in the mix. And then she starts spelling out words and it becomes almost entirely unlistenable. This would have sounded current in 2008, but eight years later it’s just sad.
Little Big – Big Dick
It’s foolish to bemoan the sexualization of modern society. We’re all more comfortable with getting our privates out whenever we can, and that’s totally fine. But what can you say about a song where the chorus is just “My dick is big / it’s very very big?” Little Big seem to be the Russian answer to Die Antwoord, a heavily tattooed white rapper paired with an odd-looking (and possibly dwarven) female singer. This junk has nothing of that band’s taboo-busting qualities, though, instead choosing to dole out the most boring Fruity Loops beats and corny-ass double entendres. If you bump this at a party, you deserve to be knocked out.
Fall Out Boy – Ghostbusters
Missy Elliot had a hell of a comeback in 2016, but the train wreck that was Paul Feig’s Ghostbusters movie can ruin just about anyone. Having her paired with Fall Out Boy, emo-pop stalwarts also long past their sell by date, was a terrifying misstep. The original Ray Parker Jr. Ghostbusters theme, for all of its ’80s goofiness, is kind of an iconic track. Taking it and trying to “rock it out” is a total disaster. All of the swing and looseness is gone, buried under wank guitar and synth washes. Patrick Stump’s idiotic repeating of “I’m not afraid” at any moment adds nothing to the lyrics, and Missy is wasted on her bars. With songs like this backing it up, it’s not surprising that the movie tanked.
Soulja Boy – Snapchat
It’s good to know that even in these uncertain times we can turn to Soulja Boy to make the dumbest songs imaginable. When you peak with Crank Dat, there’s nowhere to go but down. Soulja opens up this disaster with the lyric “She send me that pussy on Snapchat / she bustin’ it open on Snapchat” and then proceeds to make “Snapchat” the only rhyme for the rest of the song. Features by Lil Yachty and Rich the Kid don’t help matters any. It’s funny that Soulja’s whole business plan now is paying hot rising stars to come in and drop bars on his tracks, as he has to be aware his… limited talents are reaching their end. He’s kind of like that weird old uncle who always wants to talk about the bands you’re listening to at this point. Expect more tracks from him about apps the kids are using as he ages out of the industry.
Animal Collective – Floridada
What does it sound like when a band loses its relevance? A lot like Animal Collective, the once highly buzzworthy Baltimore avant-folk group that won hipster hearts in the early 2000s. Their 2009 album Merriweather Post Pavilion was lauded by critics, so they decided to pivot in the worst possible direction. 2016’s Painting With led off with Floridada, a deeply stupid track that sounds like Weird Al jamming with some college kid’s first EDM project. If you like boring synthesizer squelches and white dudes singing moronic lyrics, this is the jam for you. At this point it’s hard to say how many people are still on Animal Collective’s jock because of their reputation, because if you played this for somebody blind and said “this is One Of The Century’s Most Important Bands” they would look at you like you needed to be in a mental hospital.
Meghan Trainor – Me Too
It would have been possible for us to make this entire list Meghan Trainor songs. 2016 saw the All About That Bass novelty artist shed her doo-wop trappings for a more modern sound that was equally calculated to appeal to Starbucks moms who want to feel naughty. Her sophomore album, Thank You, is packed stem to stern with garb, but the worst of the lot is probably Me Too. An ostensible female-empowerment track, it wobbles relentlessly between faux Beyonce and spoken word delivered in a bizarre Melania Trump accent, while dubstep synths groan in the background. Everything about this song seems tailor-made to play in the background of car commercials for the next twenty years.
Misha – Song For All Haters
It may seem petty to pick on kids in this thing, but Misha is making a crap-ton of money from YouTube views so screw him. He first came to fame with songs about Pokemon Go and other youth pursuits, but when the haters jumped on his jock Misha felt the need to record a diss track in their direction. Backed by somebody jamming out at the Guitar Center, the little dude yells “Haters GTFO” while proclaiming himself “the best YouTuber.” The best thing about Misha is that his videos all say (FOR KIDS) in the title, despite him wearing a baseball cap that says “FUCK” on it and flipping the bird all the time. YouTube has created a world where people with absolutely no talent can make themselves rich, and we hate it.
Jacob Sartorius – Sweatshirt
When alien archeologists pick through the rubble of our civilization, they’ll view this era as the one where, for some insane reason, YouTube teens ruled the world. 2016 saw several of these no-talent numpties try to break through to the music world, as evidenced by Jacob Sartorious’ nightmarish Sweatshirt. A treacly middle school love song delivered by a 14 year old sounds like our worst nightmare come true, but the pre-pubescent girls who make up Sartorius’s fan base rocketed Sweatshirt to the Billboard charts. Thankfully, not all of humanity is sold on little Jacob – the sheer amount of thumbs-down on the YouTube video made it the 6th most disliked clip of all time on the service.
Rockie Gold – Dicks Out For Harambe
Was there any meme more trod into the ground than the death of poor Harambe the gorilla in 2016? The noble ape, sniped from a distance when a child fell into its enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo, inspired about seventy billion jokes on Twitter. Those were bad enough, but when Trump-loving novelty rapper Rockie Gold dropped Dicks Out For Harambe in August it tipped it over the vomit line. Needless to say, this white boy doesn’t have an ounce of flow in his body, the beat is as wack as possible and the trash-licking morons of America vaulted this mess to the top of the Spotify charts for a hot minute. If there’s one thing we need to learn from 4chan, it’s to react with hatred and dismissal to old memes like this.