With 2015 running at its end it’s time for the inevitable end of the year lists. We’re starting our end of the year series with the biggest tracks of 2015. With 25,000 new tracks offered on Beatport, it’s sometimes hard to filter through the ever-growing pile of dispensable music. Luckily though, 2015 proved to be a fruitful year for underground dance music, with genre-crossing gems, plenty of peak-time bangers and anthems. Too many even to all fit into a concise list.
To not burden you with a barrage of tracks, we limited ourselves to 30 tracks. So sit back, turn the music up and undoubtedly relive some of your finest club or festival moments of 2015.
&ME – Woods
A spellbinding thrill-ride on Keinemusik by an artist who has been through an incredible year where possibly everything landed for him career-wise.
Jon Hopkins – Open Eye Signal (George Fitzgerald Remix)
George Fitzgerald has seen an amazing year with his Album launch and some great remixes, getting support from myriad peers of the Englishman.
Dele Sosimi – Too Much Information (Laolu Remix)
We have not seen a hype built up towards a release as we did with this remix by Laolu, who appeared on the global dance music map instantly because of it. It was a regular over the summer in the sets of Dixon, Ame, Solomun, Adriatique and Job Jobse.
Kollektiv Turmstrasse – Sorry I’m Late
Diynamic’s crown jewel of the year, and probably one of the biggest releases in its history, came from Kollektiv Turmstrasse. Sorry I’m late had everything in it to be a chart & club-dominating killer. It actually earned the longest-standing general Beaport #1 spot – including EDM music.
KiNK – Cloud Generator
KiNK’s Cloud Generator was not to be the next phenomenal analog, percussion-heavy house track, but a more progressive piece that followed the lead of the Innervisions and Life and Death sound. The track was made famous by Dixon who had a fixed spot for it in his sets for weeks on end.
Bicep – Just
A favourite this summer by the Belfast boys, who guaranteed themselves a heavy booking schedule for the rest of the year with it.
Bjarki – I Wanna Go Bang
The record that shot Nina Kraviz’ ‘Trip’ imprint to fame. The vocal sample was actually lent to Bjarki by ghetto house god DJ Deeon (who used it in the seminal 2 B Free).
Jamie XX – Loud Places (Barnt E-mix)
One of the more prominent tracks from Jamie XX’ 2015 album In Colour, recomposed by studio virtuoso Barnt.
Stephan Bodzin – Singularity
Bodzin has been in the game for a long time but it seems like he re-invented himself and caught a new wave that turned out perfectly for him. Singularity has been timed perfectly on numerous occasions in the sets of Maceo Plex, Tale of Us and others.
Jonas Rathsman – Wolfsbane
Jonas Rathsman is one of those artists that is appreciated in both the underground and the more commercial music scene, this was proven with his first release on Disclosure’s label, as well as one on KOMPAKT.
Aphrohead – Let’s Prance (Radio Slave & Thomas Gandey Last Communication Remix)
Radio Slave and Thomas Gandey’s impeccable industrial rework of Let’s Prance left little to the imagination, other than everybody completely losing your shit on the dance floor.
Roman Flügel – Sliced Africa
Each record in Roman Flügel’s steady stream of releases is never without surprise. His ‘Sliced Africa’ was no exception. Next to a massive, floor-filling beat built from djembes, timbales, marimba, cowbell and other African instruments, it’s Flügel’s soft touches that make Sliced Africa great.
Terranova – Labrador
A duo that deserves a lot more credit than they get today is Terranova – one half of which is &ME. They have produced some heavyweight records, with Labrador being one of them. The record is played by a wide range of artist like Chris Liebing, Mano Le Tough, Sven Väth, Pete Tong, Sasha, Michael mayer and many more.
Danny Daze – Ready 2 Go
Danny Daze created a solid release with Ready 2 Go, which put him back on his throne.
It has been a regular in the sets of maya Jane Coles, Skream and Sasha
Jimmy Edgar – Let Me Tell You
Let Me Tell You was released on Edgar’s very own Ultramajic label, which has seen some other great releases as well, with ‘Sfire – Sfire 6 (Orginal mix)’ being one of our definite favourites.
Coma – Lora (Robag Wruhme Remix)
KOMPAKT’s slew of quality releases this year had a couple of outstanding cuts, one of which was Coma’s Lora EP. Robag Wruhme’s remix immediately became a club standard, even though the daring DJs also brought the original mix to the DJ booth.
Matt Karmil – Moment
Over the past two years, Matt Karmil has dealt a number of masterstrokes. If his various appearances on Yumé, BiS, and Mule Musiq haven’t flagged up on your radar, his forthcoming outing on Studio Barnhus deserves your undivided attention.
Damian Lazarus & The Ancient Moons – Vermillion (&ME Remix)
The Crosstown Rebels chief picked one of the most frequently asked remixers nowadays to take on his Ancient Moons collabo ‘Vermillion’, and did so with great success, creating a slow-burner that has end track written all over it.
Maceo Plex – Solar Detroit
An ode to his newborn son is how Maceo Plex introduced his long awaited, three time delayed album Solar. The Solar Sampler gave a quick taste of what was to come, with Solar Detroit as the more agressive counterpart to the softer Wash Away My Tears.
Fort Romeau – Saku
Sven Väth – Ritual Of Life (Adam Port Remix)
Adam Port’s huge 10-minute remix journey across Väth’s foundation of ‘Ritual Of Life’ is, under certain circumstances, nothing short of mind altering.
Tom Trago – Brutal Romance
Tom Trago’s Majestic outburst that is Brutal Romance had a major impact after it was released without any real notice. That snarling bass line still haunts us..
DJ Koze – XTC
With every single release this enigmatic German producer seems to ride bigger and bigger waves. Last year it was his remix of Bad Kingdom which has become a dance music standard; this year it’s his XTC original that was played by many. A totally different vibe than the bad kingdom remix, but nonetheless a stunner of a track.
Pat Thomas & Ebo Taylor – Ene Nyame Nam ‘A’ Mensuro (Henrik Schwarz Remix)
The unstoppable Strut label, usually associated to outstanding reissue anthologies, welcomed a surprise package to their catalogue this summer, including a fantastic remix of afrobeat classic Ene Nyame Nam ‘A’ Mensuro by the capable hands of Henrik Schwarz. A summer hit of epic proportions.
Fouk – Kill Frenzy
This Dutch duo was first discovered by Detroit Swindle who released them on Heist Recordings with this fine record. One to keep an eye on in 2016.
Adesse Versions – Pride
We looked forward to this Numbers release like kids to Christmas ever since we first heard it being played by the co-owner of the label, Jackmaster. Adesse’s simple classic piano bass line combined with the incredibly powerful female vocal made this one of our favourites this year, even though it didn’t turn out to be the club hit we expected it to be.
Kornél Kovács – Pantalón
Kovács’ Pantalón, another Numbers release, was a surefire end of summer hit form the outset. It’s cheesy but oh so addictive vocals, arpeggiated, almost italo like bass sound and overall joyous atmosphere had everybody dancing in an instant.
Dominica – Never Let You Go (Bicep Edit)
A 90s dance music gospel, Never Let You Go, is one of those tracks that can again be played after being stored in many a DJ’s attic for nearly two decades (originally released in 1994). Not in the least place because of Bicep who came out with an edit of the epic peak timer earlier this year.
Fatima Yamaha – What’s A Girl To Do
One of this year’s most heard tracks – and very well deserved so – didn’t actually originate in 2015, but way earlier – in 2004, when it was first released. This year, What’s A Girl Got To Do appeared on Dekmantel’s radar, who reissued it together with more of Fatima Yamaha, aka Bas Bron, his work, like Half Moon Rising and Between Worlds.
This 21st century lament has struck every listener on a profoundly emotional level, catching you in its spell from the first time you hear the iconic synth theme setting in. We’re still not sure whether this masterpiece makes us laugh or cry. But of course that’s what makes it so great.
Frankey & Sandrino – Acamar
The Ibiza track of the year and a regular in many sets to this day and probably many to come. People just couldn’t get enough of it, it seemed. And who blames them, it really is massive.