Year-End Lists \

Every Future Song of 2015, Ranked

What a time...

20. “Tricken Every Car I Get” (By Trae tha Truth) (Tha Truth)

Future’s warble didn’t rise to a growl very often in 2015, but on this autophile anthem from Houston kindred spirit Trae tha Truth. The nocturnal malice of the song’s booming beat inspires the rapper to reach to the back of his throat for the “I’M TRICKIN’ EVERY SINGLE CAR I GET!” chorus. Why this song wasn’t the Future-contributed song to make the Furious 7 soundtrack will endure as one of the year’s great musical mysteries. — A.U.

19. “Plastic Bag” (w/ Drake) (What a Time to Be Alive)

Another track off of What a Time To Be Alive where Future arguably outshines Drake, who, despite delivering his signature smooth talk, sounds a bit like a self-conscious journalist from Canada reporting on Magic City. Future is an authentic native, and it’s hard to imagine Neenyo’s brilliant, minimal production without the rapper’s signature lazy-drawl on this one. — O.K.

18. “Never Gon’ Lose” (56 Nights)

“I took your bitch to Aruba,” boasts Future Hendrix on the opening salvo of his 56 Nights mixtape, one of the most gleeful id-indulgences in one of the most hedonistic years on-record that a rapper has ever had. Future’s ritualistic self-gratification definitely felt increasingly hollow over the course of 2015, but here, it still sounds like he’s never gonna lose simply because winning is too much damn fun. — A.U.

17. “Right Now” (By Uncle Murda) (Non-Album)

Few moments on record — let alone on radio, constantly — were as blood-curdling this year as Future’s dispassionate rifle-target roll call on this one. “If Murda don’t trust you we gon’ shoot you / Lil’ Mexico don’t trust you we gon shoot you,” the rapper offers with ultimate ?blasé-blasé assuredness, over one of Metro Boomin’s most ominously skied beats. Not like you needed a reason to be on Future’s team in 2015, but “Right Now” made it especially imperative that you declare your allegiance early and often. — A.U.

16. “Blood on the Money” (DS2)

On “Blood on the Money,” Future authentically adds a tone of hopelessness and inability to change: “I can’t help the way I’m raised up / That Easter Pink, I tried to give it up, I can’t give it up.” He does so with a little help from his all-star team of producers — most notably veteran Zaytoven and 22-year-old Metro Boomin — who deliver deep bass beneath an unforgettable digital chorus. Maybe the easiest song to listen to repeatedly off of DS2, captivating but soothing. — O.K.

15. “Royalty” (By Jeremih) (Non-Album)

The closest Future’s grunting mumble’s sounded to an actual synthesizer rather than a human voice, the ATLien’s verse on Jeremih’s gloriously sleazy “Royalty” hides under clouds of cough syrup. Struggling to make sense of his words is half the fun. — B.C.

14. “Real Sisters” (Beast Mode)

Getting high off purple drank, trapping in designer shoes, and having threesomes with twin sisters (or not, Nayvadius is cool with BFFs too), this twerk-ready track is quintessential Future Hendrix. — B.G.

13. “Big Rings” (w/ Drake) (What a Time to Be Alive)

A jock-jam classic in the making, “Big Rings” wastes no time announcing its intentions: Drake and Future are talking teams, and they’re gathering more rings than Hal Jordan gone rogue. This Metro Boomin behemoth needs to be blasted from speakers, echoed in arenas, shouted with friends who DGAF about being embarrassed. If it’s good enough for the Golden State Warriors, it’s good enough for you. — K.M.

12. “Where Ya At” (feat. Drake) (DS2)

This head-bopping smooth banger has a “no new friends” theme, so it was only suitable for Drake to feature on the track. It also gave us the now-famous rooftop dance by the super-cool DJ Esco that rightfully took over social media. Bitch, don’t panic! — B.G.

11. “News or Somethn” (#MonsterMonday)

Future saved one of his most joyously garbled hooks for the chorus of this loosie, released as part of his #MONSTERMONDAY singles series. In sound alone, it feels like another of his lean-embalmed ballads, but this one takes a slightly more posi tact, preaching loyalty: to your friends, family, community. He so often swerves into delirious excess, but “News Or Somthn,” is a dispatch from the world of reality, consequences, optimism, and hope — a surprising pirouette from someone who’s spent the better part of the last couple of years dancing with the devil. — C.J.

10. “Peacoat” (Beast Mode)

The centerpiece from January’s Beast Mode, “Peacoat” prizes Burberry but not Future’s bladder. Fitted with a twinkling piano flourish from producer Zaytoven, this three-minute trifle includes one of several on-record references Future made this year about his codeine consumption and how it’s eventually spilled into the toilet. Amidst that bit of TMI, there’s talk of expensive wool outerwear, the time (and money) Nayvadius spends with women, and plenty of product placement: Moet, Prada, Chanel, Manolo. Per usual with Future’s best 2015 material, with the glamorous comes the gross-out. — K.M.

9. “March Madness” (56 Nights)

Future brilliantly blends his usual show-boating with notes of social justice on this Internet-conquering trunk-rattler. He defies police brutality via his achievements: juxtaposing lyrics that otherwise seem unrelated (“We ballin’ like it’s March Madness / All these cops shootin’ niggas, tragic”) and realizing some kind of poignancy from it. Producer 808 Mafia also delivers an objectively perfect beat, which matches the bittersweet achievement of reaching stardom in the midst of seeing your race institutionally oppressed. — O.K.

8. “Jumpman” (w/ Drake) (What a Time to Be Alive)

Metro Boomin brings out Future’s caged inner fury; usually the towering rapper’s content to hide his eyes under his wide brim, puffing boozy smoke rings skyward, but Boomin’s shifty, skittish “Jumpman” production electro-shocks the rapper to life. “Chicken wings and fries / We don’t go on dates,” he sneers, squishing the last word into a high-pitched mockery of the very idea. Hozier can take me to church, but I’d rather Future take me to Nobu Nobu Nobu Nobu Nobu Nobu. — B.C.

7. “The Percocet & Stripper Joint” (DS2 Deluxe Edition)

There’s only so much light that can sneak into an unapologetic paean to prescription pills and a desperate desire for any sort of “drug in [Future’s] system.” But as the only DS2-era track that sways and struts more than it smacks you in the gut,”The Percocet and Stripper Joint” has the distinction of possessing the least gloomy moment on a disc’s worth of depression. With snaps and cracks as pillowy as G-funk buried under an even taller cannabis mountain, things seem to be looking up just a bit for Future. You almost believe him when he hits the last line of the chorus: “I feel good.” — C.J.

6. “I Serve the Base” (DS2)

Metro Boomin sounds like he could be on Tri Angle records here, adding distorted squealing to typical hip-hop bluster. Future completely goes with it, contributing one of his most jagged-edged raps of the year, with grinningly malevolent lyrics like “I can’t change, I was God-given / Tryna make a pop star and they made a monster.” “Base” was Future in 2015: A glossy yet grotesquely oversaturated pop icon with a formidable dark side. — O.K.

5. “Trap Niggas” (56 Nights)

Trapping was the new black this year, whether it was out the bando or from the comfort of your car. We were first blessed with this lesson of finessing on March’s 56 Nights mixtape, and Future decided to teach the masses by popping it on DS2 as well. No matter what your mode of hustle is (or how illegal it may be), this motivational anthem will keep you pushing. — B.G.

4. “Blasé” (By Ty Dolla $ign) (Free TC)

Not only is this the sort of blaring, blank-eyed song that makes you want to knock over some mailboxes, “Blasé” also works on the most base level as a club showstopper. Trading chorus bars with his blunt-rolling host, Future barely has anything to do but mumble and slur his way through his eight bars. His menacing, bleary impact supersedes the rest of the crew, and there’s nothing blasé about it. — B.C.

3. “Diamonds Dancing” (What a Time to Be Alive)

Future hands-down steals the show from his Toronto compadre (no one really cares about Drake’s reductive melancholy nonsense) with a melodic cantor over a chilling rush of percussion that takes you higher and higher. You definitely can’t resist raising your styrofoam cup whenever this track comes on — just make sure the purple doesn’t spill over. — B.G.

2. “F**k Up Some Commas” (DS2 Deluxe Edition)

The song — and more specifically, the siren — that started it all for Future in 2015. “Commas” technically first appeared in 2014, on Future’s epoch-marking Monster mixtape, but in 2015 it took over the culture, blaring out of every club and car stereo from Georgia to the Andromeda Galaxy. It was anthemic, it was iconic, it was funny as s**t, and it made you want to set fire to your apartment building while you were howling “WE DON’T GIVE NO F**KS, YEAH!” from its rooftop. Anarchy in the ATL. —A.U.

1. “Thought It Was a Drought” (DS2)

Future’s finest song of 2015 is also the year’s most effective opening track (by any working artist), and starts with the year’s most jarring, double-take-inducing opening line. Wait, he just did what to who while wearing what? Even in a year with no shortage of Future, no song better encapsulates this moment in the prolific, codeine-pissing rapper’s life and career. He’s numbing himself to the outside world, but still slurping dirty soda, still keeping score of his sport-f**king, still admiring the foreboding beats and effervescent effects designed by producers Metro Boomin and Allen Ritter. This is what descending into Future’s realm sounds like — styrofoam cup not included. — K.M.