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10 Of The Best Podcasts To Listen To Right Now

1 / 11

Today, Explained 

Genre: Daily news
Average episode length: 20 to 40 minutes

Airing Monday through Friday every week, Today, Explained covers daily stories from around the globe in a concise and thoughtful manner. Subscribing to this will ensure that you’re up to date on all the current affairs and global news. I find the news easier to digest in an audio format, and anything that I want to deep dive into I can bookmark and look up later. For me, this is the ideal commute podcast to listen to right before work so that I know I’m on top of what is going on in the world around me.

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

2 / 11

Reply All 

Genre: Technology & human Interest
Average episode length: 20 to 40 minutes

An oldie but a goodie, Reply All has been my go-to podcast for interesting (and sometimes kooky) episodes that merge technology, internet culture and human behaviour into addictive stories. Hosts PJ Vogt, Alex Goldman and Emmanuel Dzotsi are a delight and believe me, you’ll want to be their best friend after just a few episodes. Reply All episodes generally stand alone, but one of my favourites has to be the three-part story about a telephone scammer. I won’t spoil it for you, but if you listen to nothing else from this list except these three episodes, you have already won.

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

3 / 11

Snacks Daily 

Genre: Business & technology
Average episode length: 15 to 20 minutes

Technology is so ingrained in everything we do at the moment, so I think it’s incredibly important to keep up-to-date on just what is going on in the business tech world, and this extension of Robinhood Financial’s newsletter does the trick. Hosts Nick and Jack break down the top three technology stories every day in an easy and digestible fashion, making sure you’re all caught up on the latest tech news while also keeping you entertained with their easy banter. Snacks Daily is the soundtrack to my daily morning routine because that’s how much I love it! Be warned though, the jingle does get stuck in your head very, very easily.

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

4 / 11

Switched On Pop 

Genre: Music
Average episode length: 30 to 40 minutes

If you love music, don’t sleep on Switched On Pop. Each episode is a breakdown of the making and meaning of pop music (yes, I did immediately listen to the episode on record breaking Drivers License the minute it came out – no shame), and will have you appreciating songs in a whole new way after you listen. It’s not overly like a music theory lecture, and you definitely don’t need to have a background in music to understand what hosts Nate (a musicologist) and Charlie (a songwriter) have to say. Covering artists from Taylor Swift to Dua Lipa and Bad Bunny to Post Malone, an episode of Switched On Pop is the perfect commute listen when you need a break from the news.

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

5 / 11

Code Switch

Genre: Society & culture
Average episode length: 30 to 40 minutes

Code Switch’s co-hosts Gene Denby and Shereen Marisol Meraji do not shy away from candid, raw and nuanced conversations about the intersection of race, identity, culture and politics, and the result is a podcast that should be mandatory listening for everyone. Given the current global political climate, I am all for tuning into and amplifying diverse voices, and gaining new perspectives myself in the process. While some of these conversations may be uncomfortable at times to hear, no growth ever came from comfort, so you should definitely give these episodes a listen. It wasn’t awarded Apple’s Podcast of the Year 2020 for no reason you know!

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

6 / 11

Life Kit

Genre: Society & culture
Average episode length: 20 minutes

If there was ever a show created just for people like me – in their late 20s, being dragged kicking and screaming towards adulthood – this is it. I was turned onto Life Kit in the middle of pandemic-induced panic, and it has proven to be a gentle and soothing balm in the face of uncertainty and adversity. It covers topics from maintaining a work life balance, to asking for help, all the way to making better pies (you bet I have this one bookmarked). These bite-sized episodes always leave me with an easily applicable takeaway as I carry on through my day. This isn’t just for single young professionals, there are even episodes on parenting and family life. Really, I think everyone needs to download this one, stat.

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

7 / 11

Ringer Dish 

Genre: Pop culture
Average episode length: 60 to 70 minutes

All my pop culture fiends out there, this one is for you! Produced by The Ringer, Ringer Dish is my go-to podcast for all the hot takes in the pop culture world – whether it’s the tea on celebrity relationships or the newest memes to take over social media, this podcast covers it all. Sometimes you just need to take a step away from serious and thought-provoking journalism, and tune into fun banter about the pop culture that shapes our online (and offline) interactions. If you’re permanently confused about what is cool, what slang is out and who the newest cultural darlings are, this is definitely your one-stop shop to learn all that and more. One of my favourite segments they have is “Cringe Mode”, where the hosts watch back movies or TV shows from a bygone era to discuss what aged well and what induced the most cringes, and I’m here for every second of it!

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

8 / 11

The Cut

Genre: Society & culture
Average episode length: 20 to 30 minutes

Hosted by Avery Trufelman (of 99% Percent Invisible fame), The Cut’s rebranded podcast launched late last year to great anticipation, and it does not disappoint. Avery explores culture, style, politics, sex and so much more with such a deft hand that you’ll be hooked from the first minute through to the last. With episodes like “The Joy of Sext” and “Do You Actually Miss the Yoga Studio?”, you can count on The Cut to engage you in a witty yet stimulating conversation that you’ll be sure to discuss with your friends in your next Zoom call.

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

9 / 11

You’re Wrong About

Genre: Human interest
Average episode length: 50 to 60 minutes

You’re Wrong About took the podcasting world by storm this year, despite launching in 2018, and for good reason. If you’re always up for a debate, or are always keen to examine situations from multiple perspectives, this is the one for you. I love this series because of its format – each host alternating between either coming to the table with little to no subject matter knowledge or showing up having done deep research, after which they work through the topic, debunking any myths or incorrect media coverage that may have happened – and the palpable chemistry between the hosts. Each topic is thought-provoking and interesting, and I always walk away feeling like I’ve learned something new. My current favourite episode? This one on Wayfair and Human Trafficking Statistics.

Listen via Apple Podcasts or Spotify

10 / 11

Pop Culture Happy Hour

Genre: Pop culture
Average episode length: 20 minutes

PCHH has been around for a decade so you can trust that its hosts truly know what they’re talking about. Led by NPR’s Pop Culture editor Linda Holmes, this podcast does daily dives into all things culture. A rotating cast of panellists from all across the internet give their takes on the newest books, TV shows, movies and music and as part of my favourite segment, “What’s Making Us Happy”, are quick to recommend new offerings to expand your own pop culture knowledge. There’s a reason PCHH has a plethora of dedicated listeners clinging onto its every word.

Listen via Apple Podcasts

11 / 11

Other podcasts to listen to

I must give an honourable mention to some of my favourite limited series out there from the last year or so. If you prefer more long-form audio journalism, here are a few that I still think about well after finishing them off.

I hope that this list has given you a good starting point if you are new to the world of podcasts, or perhaps turned you onto a favourite if you’re a veteran! Happy listening!

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