When you think of love songs, artists like Frank Sinatra, Etta James, The Beatles, Al Green and Dolly Parton are probably among the first that come to mind. Sure, it is country, pop and R&B that have seen most of the biggest hits under the everlasting theme — but “love songs” encompass much more than just sentimental ballads.
EDM may have a reputation for heavy bass drops and addictive synth beats, but a growing number of dance tracks feature thoughtful and emotional lyrics, too. Several top 10s have proven EDM’s reach goes beyond the club and rave scenes. DJs like Calvin Harris have made the genre more accessible to all music lovers — with Rihanna, Ellie Goulding, Frank Ocean and Migos being among the collaborators who’ve brought vocals to his skillful arrangements.
When words and EDM’s trademark pulsing beats join forces, it’s no surprise that love is among the most popular subjects. Whether the lyrics detail finding your soulmate or realizing you still having feelings for the one that got away, there are hundreds of electronic tracks pinpointing the fuzzy feeling you get when you’re around that special someone. Billboard has narrowed them down and put together a list of our favorite EDM love songs of all time.
Let’s be honest, saying “I love you” doesn’t always come easy. Or if it does, it can be hard to show it. Thankfully, music is there to do the work for you – or at least encourage you to show the one you love just how much you care. Listen to 55 dance-ready ways to say those three little words below.
Maceo Plex, “Under The Sheets” (2011)
Incorporating an extremely subtle sample of the Fugees’ “Ready Or Not” (listen for Lauryn Hills’ voice at the 0:44 and 0:59 marks), Maceo delivers a seven-minute seduction on which spare, vibey production does a lot of the heavy lifting in terms of creating an atmosphere of lust and love.
Loving Lyrics: “I want you under the sheets.”
RÜFÜS DU SOL, “Treat You Better” (2018)
Lasting love is built on ruptures and repairs, and few jams make sound forgiveness sound so gorgeous –and so possible — as the lead track from RÜFÜS’ 2018 LP, Solace.
Loving Lyrics: “I want your love/And I want it bad/I just wanna treat you better.”
Caribou, “Your Love Will Set You Free (c2’s Set U Free RMX)” (2014)
It’s already widely agreed upon that Caribou’s “Your Love Will Set You Free” (from his 2014 masterpiece Our Love) is perfection. Tucked later into the LP, though, is Carl Craig’s equally perfect edit of the track, which dials up the BPM and adds a crunchy synth and loads more percussion, adding weight and urgency to this love letter to that special someone you miss dancing alongside.
Loving Lyrics: “In my dreams, dear/You are here beside me in my bedroom/All night, dear/Hold each other like I never left you”
Axwell / Ingrosso, “More Than You Know” (2017)
Created by two thirds of Swedish House Mafia during the group’s mid-2010s hiatus, “More Than You Know” is pure EDM perfection, fusing an earworm melody with a funky little guitar riff and singalong lyrics about yearning and respect and desire. A late EDM era classic, the Grammy-nominated track still gets rinsed during Swedish House Mafia’s sets, now that the trio has reunited.
Loving Lyrics: “You should know that baby, you’re the best, yeah more than you know.”
Kaytranada Feat. H.E.R., “Intimidated” (2021)
A jam for anyone who’s ever felt like the object of their affection was out of their league, this come-hither jam from Kaytra and H.E.R. is delivered from the perspective of the intimidating one, who beckons the other to stop wasting time and just come closer already.
Loving lyrics: “Don’t run away, when you could be lovin’ me.”
Axwell, “Centre of the Universe” (2013)
Axwell’s first solo release post-Swedish House Mafia is a feel-good affair with endearing lyrics and uplifting melodies.
Loving Lyrics: “We’re the center of the universe. Just you and I, and I, and I.”
Filo & Peri ft. Audrey Gallagher, “This Night (Dash Berlin Remix)” (2010)
Dash Berlin’s tear-jerking trance touch elevates the original’s soothing vocal.
Loving Lyrics: “And all this aching will disappear when this night is done. And when you speak, it’s the only voice I will hear. You are the one.”
Kaskade & Tiesto ft. Haley, “Only You” (2010)
Simple and seductive, this classic Dynasty vocal cut can still tug the heartstrings.
Loving Lyrics: “I’ll repeat this phrase through all my days. With my last breath, only you.”
Third Party vs. Cicada, “Feel” (2012)
This festival staple on Steve Angello’s SIZE Records caught many ears in 2012 with its lush production and memorable refrain.
Loving Lyrics: “And I feel what you feel. And I feel what you do. And I feel like I’m falling into you.”
Fedde Le Grand, “So Much Love” (2011)
Dispense with the pleasantries — the Dutch artist’s straightforward tech house rework is a time-tested floor-filler thanks to killer sampling by Thomas Bangalter and DJ Falcon.
Loving Lyrics: “I have so much love to give.”
Major Lazer ft. Wild Belle, “Be Together” (2015)
Don’t sleep on Peace is the Mission’s opener — Wild Belle’s wistful hook is an instant earworm.
Loving Lyrics: “Maybe if the stars align, maybe if our worlds collide. Maybe on the dark side, we could be together.”
Duke Dumont, “The Giver (Reprise)” (2015)
The British artist’s dance club hit broadcasts an empowering message that recalls the classic “Show Me Love.”
Loving Lyrics: “You’re that special someone who makes me want to give it.”
Alison Wonderland, “I Want U” (2014)
Australia’s fast rising trap queen assumes both vocal and production duties on this high-octane ode to desire.
Loving Lyrics: “Just give me one look. I want you.”
Nadia Ali, “Rapture (Avicii Remix)” (2010)
The then-emerging Swede bouyed Nadia Ali’s most successful solo release into a festival favorite with this soaring rework.
Loving Lyrics: “Mi amore, don’t you know. My love I want you so. Sugar you make my soul complete. Rapture tastes so sweet.”
Gareth Emery ft. Lucy Saunders, “Sanctuary” (2010)
Many a trance family heart has exploded during this song’s serene vocal breakdown.
Loving Lyrics: “When there’s nowhere left to run, run with me. Let the moment be a sanctuary.”
Magnetic Man, “I Need Air” (2010)
The London dubstep super-trio’s (Skream, Benga and Artwork) infectious first single explores how love can be simultaneously intoxicating and smothering.
Loving Lyrics: “Now I’m drowning in your ocean, and I’m running and feeling like I don’t care. You penetrate my space and now you’re looking outta place. Cause you make this hard for me — I need air.”
Moore Kismet feat. Pauline Herr, “You Should Run” (2020)
Released when Moore Kismet was just 17, this hypnotic debut single highlights love and longing.
Loving Lyrics: “I’d run way with you if I could, if I could. No one understands me the way that you do.”
Late Night Alumni, “Empty Streets” (2005)
Kaskade’s four-piece house outfit hit its stride on this contemplative street-lit ballad.
Loving Lyrics: “If this love’s not meant to be. If the heart’s not ready to open. If we make it, I won’t see how it’s broken.”
Above & Beyond ft. Richard Bedford, “Thing Called Love” (2011)
This Group Therapy fan favorite is a cautionary reminder to always express one’s true feelings set over a euphoric trance beat.
Loving Lyrics: “There’s a thing called love that we all forget. And it’s a wasted love that we all regret. You live your life just once. So don’t forget, forget about a thing called love.”
Tiësto ft. Sneaky Soundsystem, “I Will Be Here (Wolfgang Gartner Remix)” (2009)
One of Tiësto’s most underrated tunes received an even less-heralded remix from Wolfgang Gartner that has actually held up better than the original.
Loving Lyrics: “When the big world falls apart, and you think that the feeling will linger. You need somewhere to start. I will be here.”
Tim Berg, “Seek Bromance” (2010)
Before he was Avicii, the Swedish artist was known as Tim Berg — and this hit single was his introduction to the dance world.
Loving Lyrics: “I will give to you the love you seek and more. So what are you waiting for?”
Oliver Heldens x Becky Hill, “Gecko (Overdrive)” (2014)
The rising Dutch star topped the U.K. singles chart after Becky Hill channeled feelings of overwhelming attraction over his high-octane instrumental.
Loving Lyrics: “I can’t stop this feeling. baby. Only you can make me come alive. When we’re crashing, let’s have passion. Boy, you’ve got my heart on overdrive.”
Hot Natured, “Benediction” (2012)
Jamie Jones, Lee Foss and Ali Love hit the U.K. top 40 in 2012 with this smooth vocal house number.
Loving Lyrics: “Feel like my love, feel like my love has found a home. I feel like our love has found a home. Benediction in my mind, benediction in my heart and soul.”
Gorgon City ft. MNEK “Ready for Your Love” (2014)
Gorgon City’s most commercially successful single explores cathartic renewal against a catchy house backdrop.
Loving Lyrics: “I’m ready for the rain to pour down on me. I’m ready for a change to come and set me free. I’m ready for my loss to become victory. But most of all, most of all, I’m ready for your love.”
Duke Dumont ft. Jax Jones, “I Got U” (2014)
Duke Dumont’s smash single is a feel-good anthem that casts off materalistic concerns for a cherished connection.
Loving Lyrics: “Ask me what I did with my life, I spent it with you. If I lose my fame and fortune, really don’t matter. As long as I got you, baby.”
Marvin Gaye, “Sexual Healing (Kygo Remix)” (2013)
The tropical house star has many loving reworks, but his buoyant take on Gaye’s standard is arguably his most electric.
Loving Lyrics: “And when I get that feeling, I want sexual healing. Sexual healing is good for me.”
The Chainsmokers, “I Love U” (2022)
Opening with a sample from Japanese video game Granblue Fantasy, the DJ duo take on still being in love with someone after a break-up.
Loving Lyrics: “I love you, oh, my God. It’s hard to find a reason why we can’t work this out.”
Porter Robinson, “Language” (2012)
Porter Robinson tested the deeper waters that would eventually produce his sprawling Worlds LP with this sentimental fan-favorite in 2012.
Loving Lyrics: “Give me release. Let the waves of time and space surround me. Yeah, ’cause I need room to breathe. Let me float back to the place you found me. I’ll be okay.”
Seven Lions, “Days to Come” (2012)
The Santa Barbara producer’s opening salvo on OWSLA was a mesmerizing and melodic dubstep gem that explores love and longing in mythical terms.
Loving Lyrics: “Quietly I keep you close to me. Quietly I feel you when I’m dreaming.”
Galantis, “Gold Dust” (2015)
Galantis’ beautifully produced ballad brings the chills every time.
Loving Lyrics: “Keep coming down that street. There’s a hollow in this house whenever you go.”
Benny Benassi, “Cinema (Skrillex Remix)” (2011)
There’s nothing sensual about Skrillex’s crushing dubstep drop, but the verses that precede it are proven heart-warmers.
Loving Lyrics: “I could watch you for a lifetime. You’re my favorite movie. A thousand endings. You mean everything to me.”
Frank Wiedemann & Ry X, “Howling (Âme Remix)” (2012)
This haunting tale of nighttime seduction features ethereal atmospherics and outstanding songwriting.
Loving Lyrics: “Cold, I swam into your spell. On the rite of god we fell. You were plush and I laid bare. You had me howling. Cold, I fell into your skin. On the night you led me under your sin. You had me howling.”
Calvin Harris ft. Ellie Goulding, “I Need Your Love” (2012)
Harris’ fifth Hot 100 top 40 single is raw, straightforward and effective in imparting its message.
Loving Lyrics: “I need your love. I need your time. When everything’s wrong, you make it right. I feel so high. I come alive. I need to be free with you tonight.”
Armin van Buuren ft. Laura V, “Drowning (Avicii Remix)” (2010)
Avicii’s sweeping rework made it into his 2010 BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix and onto festival stages across the globe.
Loving Lyrics: “‘Cause it feels like I’m right for the first time. And every time I take you in, I feel my heart skip a beat again. I’m drowning in your love.”
The Chemical Brothers, “Snow” (2010)
Lilting voices rise with the love they describe over scratchy synths and stuttered sweeps on the opener from the British duo’s excellent 2010 album Further. This tune also made a memorable cameo in the 2011 EDC Experience documentary.
Loving Lyrics:“Your love keeps lifting me. Your love keeps lifting me. Lifting me higher. Lifting me higher.”
Fatboy Slim, “Praise You” (1999)
The U.K. artist’s hit single is an enduring anthem of appreciation.
Loving Lyrics: “We’ve come a long long way together, through the hard times and the good. I have to celebrate you, baby. I have to praise you like I should.”
Calvin Harris, “Feel So Close” (2012)
Harris takes to the mic on his second Hot 100 top 40 single for uplifting verses on the indomitable power of mutual attraction.
Loving Lyrics: “I feel so close to you right now, it’s a force field. I wear my heart upon my sleeve, like a big deal. Your love pours down on me, surrounds me like a waterfall. And there’s no stopping us right now. I feel so close to you right now.”
Alex Gaudino, “I’m in Love (I Wanna Do It)” (2010)
A staple of Kaskade’s 2010 sets, this song is about as rosy and rousing as it gets.
Loving Lyrics: “I won’t let go. My body shows. You’re everything I need. Won’t you stay mine. From dawn till night. To live our fantasy. I’m in love, I wanna do it.”
Nadia Ali ft. Starkillers & Alex Kenji, “Pressure (Alesso Remix)” (2011)
2011’s indisputable EDM song of the summer (and perhaps the year) became practically inescapable and helped propel Alesso’s burgeoning career to new heights.
Loving Lyrics: “Come around, feel the sound. Boy, you make my heart pound. Fill me up, bring me down. When I hear your sound.”
Zedd ft. Matthew Koma, “Spectrum” (2012)
Clarity‘s first single features a chord progression Zedd describes as capturing the “feeling and tension, unpredictability and the unknown,” as well as an epic extraterrestrial music video.
Loving Lyrics: “We’ll run where lights won’t chase us. Hide where love can save us. I will never let you go.”
Galantis, “Runaway (U&I)” (2014)
Top-shelf songwriting, peerless production and an irresistible hook. Galantis at their best.
Loving Lyrics: “Think I can fly, think I can fly when I’m with you. My arms are wide, catching fire as the wind blows. I know that I’m rich enough for pride, I see a billion dollars in your eyes. Even if we’re strangers til we die.”
Marshmello feat. CHVRCHES, “Here With Me” (2019)
Whether the strongest love in your life is your significant other, your parent or your kid, you can find some solace in Marshmello’s 2019 single.
Loving Lyrics: “Can I tell you something just between you and me? When I hear your voice, I know I’m finally free. Every single word is perfect as it can be. ‘Cause I need you here with me.”
Avicii, “Fade Into Darkness” (2011)
Layering sappy (yet satisfying) vocals over his original “Penguin” instrumental, the late Avicii delivers the EDM equivalent of “I Will Follow You Into the Dark.”
Loving Lyrics: “Looking up, there’s always sky. Rest your head, I’ll take you high. We won’t fade into darkness. Won’t let you fade into darkness.”
Elderbrook & Rudimental, “Something About You” (2019)
Though the lyrics from the midtempo track suggest its a typical love song between two parties, its music video highlights an important message around self-love and breaking down toxic masculinity.
Loving Lyrics: “We stayed up all night and slept ’til noon. It’s so nice to wake up next to you. Let’s start the day with breakfast in bed. Think I’m gonna love you ’til I’m dead.”
Alesso & Ingrosso ft. Ryan Tedder, “Calling (Lose My Mind)” (2012)
This standout single became Coachella 2012’s Sahara Tent soundtrack with its thoughtful lyrics and powerful synth-driven drop.
Loving Lyrics: “Maybe heaven right now is a devil or angel away. That won’t change. Together we vow that our colors will sparkle the faith. And I will find you. I will find you. I will reach you. Or I, I, I will lose my mind.”
Stardust, “Music Sounds Better With You” (1998)
Resurrected as the encore for Daft Punk’s legendary Alive 2007 tour, the one song produced by Thomas Bangalter’s super-group was an unimpeachable club hit.
Loving Lyrics: “Ooh baby I feel right. The music sounds better with you. Love might bring us both together. I feel so good.”
Daft Punk, “Something About Us” (2001)
The robots deliver delightfully vocoded musings on inconvenient love on this timeless Discovery cut.
Loving Lyrics: “It might not be the right time. I might not be the right one. But there’s something about us, I want to say. ‘Cause there’s something between us anyway.”
Kölsch feat. Troels Abrahamsen, “All That Matters” (2012)
The Danish artist’s nine-minute confessional is simultaneously melancholy, melodic and mesmerizing.
Loving Lyrics: “All that matters is where you lay your head. All I care about is that you’re always safe.”
David Guetta ft. Kelly Rowland, “When Love Takes Over” (2009)
The French superstar’s Grammy Award-winning single explores love’s overwhelming power through a pop radio-friendly prism.
Loving Lyrics: “When love takes over, yeah. You know you can’t deny. When love takes over, yeah. ‘Cause something’s here tonight.”
Skrillex, “With You, Friends (Long Drive)” (2010)
Ask 10 Skrillex fans what this song means and you’ll get 10 different answers. Sampling a distorted vocal from early cut “I Wish You All The Luck Of The World,” this emotionally charged epic needs no explanation.
Loving Lyrics: “Bye bye. That’s all. Bye. Thank you. I like you. We love you. See you next time. Bye. Miss you.”
Kaskade, “Eyes” (2011)
With numerous entries on this list (and many more that could have made the cut), Kaskade’s clearly a charmer — and this first single off his 2011 album Fire and Ice may be his most affectionate to date.
Loving Lyrics: “You and I could paint the sky together. As the world goes by, we’ll go on forever. Look into my eyes.”
Krewella, “Alive” (2012)
The then-trio’s Hot 100 top 40 breakthrough was a rare rave anthem that seamlessly crossed over into commercial radio standout.
Loving Lyrics: “All alone, just the beat inside my soul. Take me home, where my dreams are made of gold. In the zone where the beat is uncontrolled. I know what it feels like. Come on, make me feel alive.”
Rihanna ft. Calvin Harris, “We Found Love” (2011)
The longest-running No. 1 single of 2011 elevated Harris to the ranks of EDM’s elite with strong songwriting and a show-stopping delivery from Rihanna.
Loving Lyrics: “Yellow diamonds in the light. Now we’re standing side by side. As your shadow crosses mine. What it takes to come alive.”
ODESZA feat. Leon Bridges, “Across The Room” (2017)
Bridges provides emotional vocals on ODESZA’s optimistic ode to finding meaning in the little moments.
Loving Lyrics: “The scent of your perfume has got me lost in a haze. And oh this moment depends on the records that the DJ plays. Baby move a lil bit closer ’cause I wanna feel you babe”
OneRepublic vs. Alesso, “If I Lose Myself” (2013)
Likely Alesso’s finest moment as a remixer, this main stage-sized take on OneRepublic’s reflective ballad is a melodic masterpiece.
Loving Lyrics: “If I lose myself tonight, it’ll be by your side. If I lose myself tonight, it’ll be you and I.”
Disclosure ft. Sam Smith, “Latch” (2012)
This heartfelt love song launched two marquee-sized careers and stole hearts across the world from the first listen.
Loving Lyrics: “I feel we’re close enough, could I lock in your love? Now I’ve got you in my space, I won’t let go of you. Got you shackled in my embrace, I’m latching on to you.”
Zedd ft. Foxes, “Clarity” (2012)
Evocative yet accessible lyrics and top-notch production rendered “Clarity” a ubiquitous radio heavyweight following its 2012 release.
Loving Lyrics: “”Cause you are the piece of me I wish I didn’t need. Chasing relentlessly, still fight and I don’t know why. If our love is tragedy, why are you my remedy? If our love’s insanity, why are you my clarity?
Steve Angello & Laidback Luke ft. Robin S., “Show Me Love” (2009)
Thanks to its timeless “bruised-but-unbowed” narrative, Robin S.’s classic may have been remixed and remade more than any other house song.
Loving Lyrics: “So baby if you want me, you’ve got to show me love. Words are so easy to say, oh ah yeah. You’ve got to show me love.”
Deadmau5 & Kaskade, “I Remember” (2008)
Defined by an enduring and unmistakable chord progression, “I Remember” finds the artists at their most mature and memorable.
Loving Lyrics: “Add to the memory you keep. Remember when you fall asleep. Hold to the love that you know. You don’t have to give up to let go.”
Daft Punk, “Digital Love” (2001)
An immortal classic about dreamt love and longing. It’s only fitting that the French trailblazers top this list.
Loving Lyrics: “Oh, I don’t know what to do. About this dream and you. I wish this dream comes true.”