Musical staff

Editor’s Choice – Our Team’s 2021 Tracks

Editor’s choice – Tracks of the year 2021

It’s been another weird year – ups and downs, returns to normal for some, but one thing is clear throughout 2021, the dance music scene has always been able to deliver some fantastic music. As we wrap up the year, we present our editors’ picks of their favorite tracks from the past 12 months.

Will Sparks – Not Awake [Armada Music/CLUBWRK]

Like everyone else, I had such a hard time deciding on one track. I have been fortunate enough to see Will Sparks play on several occasions this year, despite the many blockages we have had here in Melbourne. The cinematic accumulation and captivating melody of Not awake made for the best intro Sparks has ever had, in my opinion. Every time he plays this track it sends tingling tingles down my back and it makes me so excited for the rest of his set. From the groovy, but edgy first drop, to the muffled 150 beats per minute kick, to the flawless breakdowns, this song has given me unforgettable memories with some of my best friends. – Jackson Naffa

David Guetta & MORTEN – Impossible (feat. John Martin) [Musical Freedom]

While this has been an incredible year for new music and there are so many tracks that could be my favorites, the one that stood out to me the most this year was the Future Rave anthem. Impossible everyone’s favorite duo, David Guetta and MORTEN. With the vocal styles of John Martin, I knew it was going to be a massive release and it’s been part of my daily rotation of songs to listen to since its release. Its powerful synths always manage to put me in a stir, and I also loved listening to it live. Overall, this is definitely one of the biggest chunks of 2021 and my favorite anthem of the pair outside of their 2020 release. Dreams.Ellie Mullins

Franky Wah – Not in Love (feat. LOWES) [Ministry of Sound]

A number of Franky Wah tracks could have been at the top of my list, but none beat the progressive melodies and enchanting vocals intertwined throughout. Not in love. I think it attracts me so much that the top line reminds me a bit Hans zimmer‘s Cornfield hunting; that, combined with the lively lyricism of LOWES, adds seamlessly to the record. If the original wasn’t enough, the track’s cinematic re-release takes this track to another level, with the introduction of powerful piano chords and a thoughtful break-beat drop. In short, an exceptional production that I listen to all year round and probably for many years to come. – Ryan ford

Love Regenerator & Eli Brown – We Can Come Together [Columbia Records]

It’s hard to choose just one song, but there is one that immediately made me smile. Infused with a funky vibe, We can come together brought joy in a year that still hangs around the woes of the pandemic. Released in the height of summer, this lead piano pearl was like a rallying cry for the music and the ravers, which were beginning to be able to commune again from the dancefloor. This was the second time Calvin Harris’s underground alias had joined Eli Brown and the result was a modern dance tune with the old school glow. It’s an ode to unity and a celebration of music that made me fall in love with house music again. – Samantha reis

DJ Licious – I don’t wanna know [Shomi]

While I don’t particularly like picking a song of the year due to an abundance of favorites for various reasons, one song that really stood out to me in 2021 was DJ Licious’ I do not want to know. Releasing part of his EP of the same name, this astonishing air house offers euphoria through its heavy bass and perfect moments at the piano. Deep and relevant lyrics are delivered by incredible singer Clairy Browne who overall curated the perfect song for me. It’s emotional, energetic, anthemic and I find myself constantly listening to it since its release in September. – Jack spilsbury

Jimi Jules – My city is on fire [Innervisions]

The track is a perfect amalgamation of disco vocals and techno-inspired synths. The track received immense support from the big guns of the melodic techno and indie dance music spectrum. The groovy drum line and catchy melody of the track captures the essence of modern day trending sound and at the same time is reminiscent of old disco tracks. – Hemant Khatri

Martin Garrix, Julian Jordan, Tinie Tempah – Diamonds [STMPD Records]

A long-awaited collaboration, Ddiamonds is the epitome of a track that will take you out of your seat and straight onto the dance floor. A club banger like no other, Martin Garrix and Julian Jordan have once again shown their undeniable chemistry to produce great venue hits, while the voice of iconic rapper Tinie Tempah helps elevate this track to another dimension. Relentless production in every way, the nuances of Diamonds will leave you guessing throughout, while the powerful bass helps create the most dynamic drops. A real gem of production, Diamonds falls under one of the songs of the year for its powerful and highly energetic aura, as well as the message of hope and comfort that no matter the circumstance (s), even Diamonds themselves shine the most when under pressure. – Ouranios Savva

Dusky – Local newspaper [17 Steps]

London-based duo Dusky have a reputation for two things: decent tracks that can’t really be lumped into one genre, and incredibly bizarre track names. From Yoohoo, at Citrus juicer, at Parakeet feet, there is an abundance of mixtures of styles and surreal song titles. Enter, in perhaps the craziest year dance music has ever known, if not the second, of Dusky’s efforts for 2021. Eros has been widely hailed as one of the “songs of the year” by people such as BBC Radio 1’s Danny Howard with it’s tech-house style filling the floor, but it would be remiss not to point out Local journal as their stand-out for 2021. It’s almost a perfect snapshot of everyone’s emotions throughout the year – the return of raves, festivals, long trips to unknown parts of the UK, late nights , early mornings, sunrises, sunsets, club, gas station, house party, talking cod shit to complete strangers in a kitchen somewhere, rehearsing again on weekends following. The sound evokes both the early rave scene and the present day, not just from the piano riffs and rave breakbeats of the 90s, but also vocal snippets of Dusky that don’t make sense, like songs. lost snapshots of conversations on warehouse dance floors or after parties in a city you’ve never heard of before. It’s also why the title makes so much sense – bizarre, insignificant headlines on a sandwich panel outside a shuttered corner store as you walk into a rave under the dark sky and the sodium glow. street lights, or come home in the cold light the next day, all feeling slightly surreal, but just as good in the world. Local journal is a lesson in nostalgia that will appeal to old-school ravers, and a lesson to the younger generation that despite difficult times, the best is yet to come. – Mike davies

Image by Anurag Kaushik from Pixabay