Here we are at the end of 2015. We take this time to look back and reflect on all the goodness that we listened to in the indie dance and nu-disco arena. It was a year with plenty of innovation and some of the deepest feels. I'll say no more, let's get on with the best 15 indie dance tracks of 2015.
If you were curious what we were listening to as far as indie dance and nu-disco went last year, click here.
15. "Ringtone (Joe Goddard Remix)" YACHT [Downtown Records]
What's an indie dance chart without a bit of dance-punk? YACHT's near future thinking and modern day evaluating "I Thought the Future Would Be Cooler" was inspiring 2015 album, and they are a solid interview too. The Hot Chip innovator Joe Goddard's twist on their track "Ringtone" takes the song in the direction of an old-fashioned Chicago banger, as if DJ Pierre were to remix the Eurythmics.
14. "Embracing Me" - SAFIA
SAFIA takes the crooning crown for 2015, I'll say that first and foremost. This song is full of love and hot damn that lead vocalist has the special sauce in spades in his voice. This song is a melter, be it your heart or your face, everything is going to end up a sweaty mess on the dancefloor.
13. "Heart Hides" - ASCIO feat. San Mei
[Velcro City Records]
A deeply romantic song that is emotive and delightfully chill. Breathy and dreamy, this was a sultry summertime selection that pairs well with a romantic sunset. There is a delicacy at play here that allows the song to be perfectly up to the brim with hope and positivity.
12. "Slow Me Down" - Eric Sharp & Tenova
Eric Sharp and RIS Labs really got caught my attention time and time again this year. When Eric and Tenova come together, they make quite the formidable duo, I called them dark room destroyers before, and I'll hit that same title home again. This song shimmers and shines, it is a magical bejeweled suit of indie dance armor. It's a sonic disco ball, and what's not to love about that?
11. "Karma" - Justin Jay feat. Josh Taylor & Benny Bridges
[Black Butter Records]
Justin Jay graduated from USC this year, and in this transition out of academia, Justin's sound evolved a touch. He's got this great collaboration going with singer Josh Taylor that was an unexpected sound, but it's just so perfect. Very big things are coming from Justin Jay, and this song is the perfect culmination of all the best Justin's got going right here, right now and coming soon.
10. "Cranes" - Monkey Safari
Monkey Safari caught me with an arrow right to the feels with this beautiful work of music. There is passion, there is a substance to this composition that transcends it to a legendary status. This is a song that commands all the attention. It stops you in your tracks and you can't really go anywhere else other than where the artist wants your emotions to be. Get lost in Monkey Safari, it does the trick.
9. "Hot as You Want" - Lane 8 feat. Solomon Grey
Another song that's meant for the lovers. Lane 8 is absolutely one of the standouts of 2015, so if you haven't spent some time driving in his lane, well, time to merge. Solomon Grey and Lane 8 came together to put some poetry in the world, and I really wish I could have been in the studio as a fly in the wall when this song came to life.
8. "Very First Breath" - Hudson Mohawke feat. Irfane
Hudmo went out of his way to show the world he's no one trap pony on his new album. He'd been wanting work with Irfane for quite some time, and thank the gods the two made it work. It is overflowing with energy, and that is generally a sign of a great song.
7. "Wonderland" - Beataucue
First off, this song is huge. It also is bold, melodic, beautiful and even sympathetic. It is bright and moving a million miles an hour, but even more so it feels very present. It runs the gamut of emotions, and it's just the definition of triumphant. In April, I said this song was a contender for top song of the year, and now that we made it, it's here!
6. "Tearing Me Up" - Bob Moses
Bob Moses ooze sex. They go right for the jugular like a jungle cat. "Tearing Me Up" is a song that sits casually in a tree, ready to pounce down and eat your vibes alive. These guys crushed it for a Treasure Island Music Festival as an early set stunner, and I expect them to crush the festival circuit even more in 2016.
5. "What Kind of Man (Nicolas Jaar Remix)" - Florence & The Machine
Oh, Nico, you've outdone yourself yet again! It takes a certain kind of man to take on the heavy task of remixing Florence and her machine, but boy you get the job done. It is an adventure in 12 minutes and 21 seconds, and it deserves an instant replay.
4. "Call It Love (If You Want)" - George Fitzgerald
If there was anyone this year to full embody the adage of beauty in the breakdown, it definitely was George Fitzgerald with his album "Fading Love". Delving deep and capturing the essence of a dissolving relationship, George is not afraid to express his heartache. George, all art needs to pick up more of what you're putting down. Bravo!
3. "The Trouble with Us" - Marcus Marr & Chet Faker
My boy first name Chet, last name Faker came out of left field with this unexpected but totally appropriate collaboration with Marcus Marr. When I shared this with my friends before its release, it spread like wildfire and there wasn't a single detractor. Get down with your bad self to this one, it's clearly what Marcus and Chet want you to do.
2. "Fast Lane" - Rationale
[Best Laid Plans Limited]
Your heart's going to fall in sync with the feels of this work of magic from newcomer Rationale. The song has been on repeat for me for months, I can't seem to escape it. Also, that complete drop to silence grabs all of your attention and elevates this tune to unforgettable.
1. "Puppet Theatre" - Claptone feat. Peter, Bjorn & John
2015, put a gold mask on it. Put Claptone's gold mask on it to be more precise. The mysterious master of dancefloor magic did a lot this year with his debut album releasing and one of better essential mixes. His uniquely dark and intriguing collaboration with Peter, Bjorn & John is a well deserved number one on this here best tracks of indie dance for the year of our dance music lord 2015.
And for all you full playlist lovers, this playlists for you!