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The 50 best podcasts to listen to in 2024

From true crime to politics and music to history, it's another great year for podcasts. Here's what we're listening to.

Ella Doyle
Edited by
Ella Doyle

There are a million podcasts out there, and 2024’s releases are showing no signs of slowing down. There’s already been a load of bangers since the beginning of the year, and here at Time Out, we’re determined to listen to them all. After all, how else are you going to know which one to choose?

We’ve rounded up our favourites, from political podcasts that look behind the news to comedy podcasts with your favourite funny people, and plenty of those all-important investigative whodunnits to keep you up at night. If you’re looking to dig deeper into one genre, we’d recommend trying our specialist lists on for size (you’ll find them below). But for a full list of good, addictive podcasts of every genre, read on. 

🎧 The best podcasts on Spotify
😂 The best comedy podcasts
🗞️ The best news podcasts
💤 The best sleep podcasts
🎶 The best music podcasts

Listen to Time Out’s very own podcast

‘Love Thy Neighbourhood’ by Time Out

Oh, didn’t we mention? Here at Time Out, we love a good podcast so much, we only went and made our own! ‘Love Thy Neighbourhood’ is hosted by Time Out London’s editor Joe Mackertich, joining celebs for a walk through the best spots in their area of London. So far Joe’s had a pint with Derren Brown, Paloma Faith, Phil Wang and lots more, and season two promises even more of our favourite funny celebs. It’s silly, it’s funny, it’s got a hell of a lot of good recommendations and it always ends in a pub. What could be better?

Best podcasts to listen to

1. Who Trolled Amber

Another smash hit by the Tortoise, ‘Who Trolled Amber’ (released in Feb 2024) looks back at the Depp v Heard case with a new lens: what was the role of AI-generated content? The result is a dark but fascinating look at online misinformation in the age of AI, and it’s a warning to all of us to how vulnerable we are to manipulation, no matter how internet-savvy we might feel.
Ella Doyle
Guides Editor

2. Sounds Like A Cult
Georgia Evans
Commercial Editor, Time Out

3. One Year

If you love a deep dive, you’ll most certainly get a thrill out of ‘One Year’: a Slate podcast which spends multiple episodes kicking around the forgotten corners of a single year in the twentieth century, and seeing what lessons it can teach us about right now. So far they’ve delved into 1977, 1995, 1986, 1942, 1955 and 1990, with the latest season kicking off with a (literally) riotous tale about the opening of the Soviet Union’s first Pizza Hut. The storytelling is always on point, and the events featured range from thought-provoking to jaw-dropping: you’ll find yourself wondering why you didn’t learn this stuff in school.
James Manning
Content Director, EMEA

4. The History Of Curb Your Enthusiasm

Curb Your Enthusiasm is no more – Larry David faced down his last microaggression in early 2024 – but Curb fanatics’ thirst for awkward, social-nicety-defying scenarios will still need slaking. Enter co-stars Jeff Garlin (Larry’s Manager and BFF, Jeff Greene), Susie Essman (Jeff’s wife, Susie) and celebrity guests like Jon Hamm and Wanda Sykes to share stories, nostalgia and origin tales on a podcast all about the now-legendary sitcom. Did you know that HBO execs once sniffily referred to Curb as their ‘little experimental show’? Well, who’s laughing now? Okay, probably not Larry.
Phil de Semlyen
Global film editor

5. Sentimental Garbage

Listening to Sentimental Garbage is like sitting in on an English Lit seminar at uni, except the subject matter is your favourite rom-com, and the people discussing it are intelligent and loveable huns. Hosted by the exuberant author Caroline O’Donoghue, each week she invites a guest on to discuss the important things in life – girly popular culture that’s typically palmed off as trashy, ‘sentimental garbage’. Covering everything from ‘Real Housewives’ to Avril Lavigne, this podcast really is for the girlies.
India Lawrence
Contributing writer

6. Chameleon: Wild Boys

In 2003, two half-starved boys emerge from the Canadian wilderness, claiming to have been raised in the woods. They say they’ve never been to school, seen a dentist, watched TV or had any previous contact with the modern world. A local hockey mom, Tammy, takes the brothers under her wing. But suspicions are soon raised by their surprisingly advanced vocabulary and the names they provide for their parents: Mary and Joseph. The true story of the ‘bush boys’ unfolds, traversing the complex worlds of conspiracy theorists, eating disorders and our ability to suspend our disbelief when it comes to ‘wild’ meets Western world narratives. Jess Phillips


7. Serial

Okay, we know. It’s ‘Serial’. It’s been around since 2014. But this podcast is an absolute unadulterated cult classic, and for good reason. Series one changed the scope of the podcast world forever, paving the way for every brilliant investigative true crime podcast you’ve listened to this year. The first season delves into a murder case, for which the victim’s ex-boyfriend Adnan Syed was convicted. Following the podcast and subsequent media attention, in 2022, he was released. Season three was equally as groundbreaking, exploring the day-to-day happenings of an American courthouse. The best part? Season four is reportedly on its way. Find us a podcast as influential as ‘Serial’ – we’ll wait. Ella Doyle

8. The Polyester Podcast

Born of the intersectional feminist arts and culture publication Polyester, the weekly Polyester Podcast dissects pop culture through a feminist lens. Editor-in-chief Ione Gamble and Gina Tonic host the podcast, and they’re both giggly, snarky delights. Their auditory hot takes include being ironically alt-right, Doja Cat being controversial, and how inclusivity in fashion is a charade. I personally love the podcast because they are critically cynical of social movements and will always dig into the deeper subtext behind trends while applying their own insights – and I need that reminder to not just absorb things I come across online.
Catharina Cheung
Section Editor

9. Normal Gossip

If you find yourself getting ridiculously invested in drama involving complete strangers, then Normal Gossip is the podcast for you. Each episode features host Kelsey McKinney and a special guest as they dive into an anonymous morsel of gossip submitted by listeners. Even though you don't know any of the people involved, you still feel the rush of hearing extremely juicy gossip as if they're close friends. (And it will not stop you from forming strong opinions of everyone involved!)
Will Gleason
Content Director, The Americas

10. This American Life

‘This American Life’ originated as a public radio show (which it still is) in the 1990s and eventually took on the podcast format as well. Hosted by the instantly recognisable Ira Glass, each episode of this weekly show has a theme that is explored, usually through first-person narratives, by folks from all walks of life in the US and beyond. Think ‘stories about being little’, the pros and cons of therapy and the tale of a flute player who steals a million dollars’ worth of dead birds.

Given its long history, the podcast boasts a huge library. You can browse through 28 years of episodes right now.
Andrzej Lukowski
Theatre & Dance Editor, UK

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