Saturday, January 1, 2011

Arnie Becker's best of 2010

So it's time for a new Best of the Year post. I won't bore you with the usual "it was sooo difficult selecting the tracks", even if it was. For example my already cropped-down list of 25 suddenly grew to 34 just before I went to bed last night. I managed to get it down to 25 again today, and compared to the thousands of tracks I've listened to this year they have all been in the top of my most played lists, have meant something special or generally made a big impression on me. So if your track ended up around number 20, please don't see it as a terrible write-down; there's a lot of great music I had to exclude, and I spent more time cropping the list than getting the list in exactly the right order.

But let's go to work.

#25. Volta Cab - Clarissa
I'll start my way up to the top with Volta Cab who added to the Russian wave that the likes of Tesla Boy started. Volta Cab makes dreamy nu disco or soft house though, and my favourite track from the strong debut EP was the title track.

Volta Cab - Clarissa


#24. David E. Sugar - Flea Market (Third Party Remix)
David who? yeah, I know we haven't written about him, so adding him on my top of the year list might seem like we haven't done our job. In part that's true, David E. Sugar made a great album, and a great single in "Flea Market", so this is a small step to make it up to him. Also, I really liked the 90s rave air of the break in the Third Party remix. More stuff like that is coming up.

David E. Sugar - Flea Market (Third Party Remix)
128 kbps - buy the full quality version here!

#23. Jen Bloom - All I'm Dreaming Of
There were some strong beautiful female voices singing beautiful pop songs with up-tempo beats this year. One favourite was Ellie Goulding, another one was Jen Bloom, who with the production help of monstr made a great song, and a great single with remixes from Artwork and Dcup.

Jen Bloom - All I'm Dreaming Of


#22. The Toxic Avenger - ANGST:ONE
The Toxic Avenger released an epic EP late this autumn. Of two versions by Toxic himself and two great remixes we could have chosen either one, but since (spoiler alert!) Black Strobe will pop up later, I went with the intense, yet melodic original.

The Toxic Avenger - ANGST:ONE


#21. Delphic - Halcyon (Clancy Remix)
And now some power-synth to cover all the nutrition groups in the food pyramid. Clancy was a new acquaintance in the spring. Him teaming up with Build is really a match made in heaven. Favourite Clancy was one of his two remixes of Delphic.

Delphic - Halcyon (Clancy Remix)


#20. Build - Palm Tree
Did anyone say Build? He had already built up a great reputation for his up-tempo remixes and characteristic sound. This year he showed us that he's more than just a great remixer.

Build - Palm Tree


#19. Stay Ali - 97
Great debut EP from the talented trio Stay Ali on Technofavrik, the label run by another great; Monsieur Adi. The Swedish trio have apart from their obvious talents, the feeling for beautiful melodies sometimes that slightly quirky and artsy touch that show their background in art music.

Stay Ali - 97


#18. Punches - Feeling Right (Justin Faust Remix)
This year we were fortunate to play with some great djs. One of them was Justin Faust who we happened to have been fans of for quite a while. He turned out to be just as great a guy as producer and DJ, and his happy disco take on his music gelled perfectly with upcoming Brooklyn act Punches', who with a different sound have essentially the same take.

Punches - Feeling Right (Justin Faust Remix)


#17. Fare Soldi - Il Vecchio e il Mullet
Fare Soldi had a very productive year, spitting out remixes and original tracks. We loved the fat frico disco, and we had a great time when we played together in Stockholm. Plus we got some great advice from the label veterans for when we start a label of our own. I could have picked any of a number of tracks and remixes, but the hair metal guitars in "Il Vecchio e il Mullet" sums up their playful sound perfectly.

Fare Soldi - Il Vecchio e il Mullet


#16. Chemical Brothers - Swoon (Boys Noize Remix)
Boys Noize' remix of The Chemical Brothers's "Swoon" was the hyped track at the Exit festival this summer. Everyone played it, including David Guetta (I think), and it will forever make us remember the sunrises of the Dance Arena.

Chemical Brothers - Swoon (Boys Noize Remix)


#15. Tesla Boy - Rebecca
We are still the massive Tesla Boy fans we were in 2009, so meeting them down in Serbia made us giggle like schoolgirls. Ok, I'm exaggerating a bit, but we're stoked that wheels are in motion to bring them to Sweden. They released their full-length album this year, and "Rebecca" was my new favourite.

Tesla Boy - Rebecca EP • (Preview) by Mullet Records
Buy the single on Juno!

#14. Grum - Through The Night (Perseus Remix)
Someone else who have been a favourite for ages and who released his first full-length album was Grum. Me and Jonny argued a bit about who'd get the "Through the Night" original on his list. It ended up with me having to "settle" with the Perseus remix which is just inches behind the original. Am I being too hard on Perseus? Well, they don't need to sulk since I've already heard one of their upcoming remixes which is bound to end up on my Best of 2011 list... More on that later though.

Grum - Through The Night (Perseus Remix)


#13. Fiero - Tonight
A late entry on the list, but with a bullet marking. I really loved Fiero's Janet Jackson remix and their 80s sound. And we're not talking about all the '83 italo sounds from the nu italo, we're talking about romantic '87 Quincy Jones sounds. The track that has grown the most on me is their power-ballad-house original "Tonight". Thanks Digitalfoxglove for the tip, and expect more from these guys in 2011!

Fiero - Tonight


#12. Jamaica - I Think I Like U 2 (Breakbot Remix)
Not much coming from the magic hands of Justice this year, but on the other hand Xavier de Rosnay produced the re-named Poney Poney; Jamaica. Great indie pop with electro genes. Breakbot continued to produce great remixes in the shadow of his hit "Baby I'm Yours". Jonny picked that one, so I picked his Jamaica remix which made anyone who heard it jump up and dance.

Jamaica - I Think I Like U 2 (Breakbot Remix)


#11. Pnau - With You Forever (FM Attack Remix)
"With You Forever"? 2010? Yes, one of the biggest tracks of 2009 was given this gentle treatment by one of our favourite acts last January. And since it's been my favourite FM Attack track from this year it deserve a place on my list.

Pnau - With You Forever (FM Attack Remix)


#10. Active Child - When Your Love Is Safe (Classixx Remix)
The Americans reacted to all the nu italo from recent years with pointing out that all good music from the 80s wasn't made in Milan in '83. And suddenly the sounds of the 80s retro trend jumped a couple of years ahead and over to the other side of the Atlantic. And if the Fiero track was half ballad half house, this Classixx remix of Active Child was nothing short of a classic R'n'B ballad. And heartbreakingly beautiful at that.

Active Child - When Your Love Is Safe (Classixx Remix)


#9. The Shoes - Stay The Same (Siriusmo & Jan Driver Remix)
Siriusmo is a big favourite. He's always super funky and there's usually a lot going on in his tracks. His remix collaboration with Jan Driver of The Shoes' great track starts off laidback and funky and then builds and builds. Great track to kick in a new gear in your set.

The Shoes - Stay The Same (Siriusmo & Jan Driver Remix)


#8. Robyn - Dancing On My Own (Fred Falke Remix)
Robyn has really grown out to be the queen of electropop. Her transformation from her early commercial bubblegum pop days to who she is today is truly impressive, and her success is well deserved. Fred Falke had a slower year this year than the year before. But his remix of everyone's favourite Robyn track is Monsieur Falke in fine form.

Robyn - Dancing On My Own (Fred Falke Remix)


#7. Fenech-Soler - Stop and Stare
Fenech-Soler's debut album was my favourite album this year. I just love their utterly danceable indie pop. The new single "Demons" is awesome, but my pick is the delirious rave-samba-indie song "Stop and Stare" which was on my favourite compilation of the year: Kitsuné Maison 9.

Fenech-Soler - Stop and Stare


#6. Black Strobe - Me and Madonna (Jolie Cherie Remix)
Black Strobe not only made a great remix of the Toxic Avenger track above, they released a single of their own on Kistuné, which was a solid release with great remix support. My favourite was the Jolie Cherie remix with its trance-synth break.

Black Strobe - Me and Madonna (Jolie Cherie Remix)
128 kbps - buy the full quality version here!


#5. kamp! - Distance of the Modern Hearts

Kamp! went from strength to strength and snatch a spot on my list this year too, this time with an original. "Distance..." is a piece of extremely well-written pop music with lots of breaks and build-ups leading up to a great finale. We are really looking forward to go to Poland in a few weeks to support their mini-tour.

kamp! - Distance of the Modern Hearts


#4. Miami Horror - Sometimes (G.L.O.V.E.S. Remix)
Yeah, I know I had the original on my Best of 2009 list, and I know that the G.L.O.V.E.S remix was leaked as early as last December, and I know that "Holidays" is an awesome track from Miami Horror's equally awesome album that came out this year. But I just can't look past this track that came to be my soundtrack to the summer of '10. I just love how it starts off all relaxed before erupting in a house piano orgy.

Miami Horror - Sometimes (G.L.O.V.E.S. Remix)


#3. TEETH!!! - See Spaces (DREAMTRAK DIAMOND SOUND)
This track made it to the podium even if TEETH!!! acted like amateurs and assholes when they deleted my Youtube video, giving me a first strike in the process. Such injustice will take time to forget, but it's on the other hand not Dreamtrak's fault. Plus this 90s-flavoured rave-anthem is just such a great track, and have had more than a few dancefloors go crazy.

TEETH!!! - See Spaces (DREAMTRAK DIAMOND SOUND)


#2. M'Black - Heartbreak (Diamond Cut Remix)
2010 was a lot of disco, 90s rave and power-synth. No matter how much we played Diamond Cut's remix of M'Black, we never grew tired of it. Great pop song and wonderfully well-produced. It has kind of a slow start, but when it starts to unravel after two minutes it's worth the wait. Plus I love it when the wall of sound  hits you like sledgehammer after the break.

M'Black - Heartbreak (Diamond Cut Remix)
128 kbps - buy the full quality version here!


#1. Ellie Goulding - Starry Eyed (Monsieur Adi Remix)
My favourite track of the year is the result of a perfect match between two extremely talented musicians with what seems as great appreciation of each other (we know Ellie Goulding likes Monsieur Adi's remixes as much as we do). That the original is a great pop song helps of course. The result is an intensely beautiful song that still works well on a dance floor. I send a gold medal down to Paris that will match Adi's golden robot body perfectly.

Ellie Goulding - Starry Eyed (Monsieur Adi Remix)

RAR: Arnie Becker's best of 2010 (All the tracks, including awesome artwork)

7 comments:

MoyerME said...

i just downloaded at least 12 of these. brilliant. thanks.

Alexandre said...

Downloaded every one of them, even if i already had a bunch of these. Monsieur Adi is really talented and seeing it on top of your brillant top 25 doesn't suprise me a bit.
Thank you tracasseur for an amazing year

Lu said...

Good to hear you're coming to Poland! Where are you going to play?

Jonny Puma said...

Yeah, we're happy to come to Poland and play together with kamp! We don't the exact places yet but we have one night in Warsaw and one in Lodz, that we know for certain. Maybe one more city. We'll keep you updated!

Lu said...

If you're in Warsaw then I'm definitely coming to your gig. i hope it's going to be in the club I am DJing :)

ecko said...

such a compilation of ear-orgasmic songs!!
more more more!
great job you to i'ma buy a t shirt cos i like this site so much xD

/fanboi

Dominic said...

It's been a while but I never forgot where I found this exceptional remix of Starry Eyed. Thanks.