Year in Review | Top Singles 20 – 16


Year in Review | Top Singles of 2011
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20 to 16

by Joshua P. Ferguson

The countdown continues...

20) Katy B "Lights On" – Columbia/Rinse
It's a headline straight out of TMZ and I've been beating it to death, but 2011 was the year that teenie bop nightmare Justin Beiber announced he'd be incorporating dubstep into his future "musical" endeavors. So yes, dubstep has gone pop. But not like Katy B. The British ingenue is the only authentic dubstep pop star and this end-of-the-night anthem shows Ms. B at her best.

 


19) Burial "NYC" – Hyperdub
This whole post-dubstep brouhaha wouldn't exist without the cloudy concoctions of minimal dubstep mystery man Burial. His murky music has reached such heights that his spacious sounds have even come wafting down from our upstairs neighbor's flat. There was no full length from this master of spare soul—which gives us something to look forward to in 2012—but "NYC"'s static gallop and R'n'B wail was more than enough to tide us over.

18) Bryan Farry "Alphaville" (Todd Terje remix) – Vinyl Factory
We only discovered Vinyl Factory this year, and while pricey, the UK pressing plant/imprint has breathed new life into the world of wax. With gorgeous artwork that is stripped away to reveal even more stunning music, this is the place to go for the collector. And while we were thoroughly impressed with releases by Massive Attack and Florence and the Machine, it's this remix from Mr. Roxy Music and Nordic remix master Todd Terje that gets our heartbeat up every time we work its poppy parlor piano into our DJ sets.

 


17) araabMUZIK "Streetz Tonight" – Duke Productions
If only all hip-hop beats could sound like those on MPC whiz araabMUZIK's debut Electronic Dream. But then again, these dance-music-sampling head nodders sound better without the MC. Case in point: "Streetz Tonight," a banger that bounces from half time to double time and back. All it needed was a Kaskade sample to be one of the most infectious things we discovered this year.

 


16) Virgo Four "It's a Crime" (Caribou remix) – Rush Hour
Leave it to Rush Hour to cultivate and rerelease some of the best that Chicago house has to offer. And leave it to Caribou to take this long lost gem from duo Virgo Four and turn it into a sprawling acid-laden workout. Classic dance tracks are finally getting their due some 20 years later, and when they get updated like "It's a Crime" was, it only adds to the awe.


 

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