Yes, it’s that time of year again when we trawl through everything that the last twelve months had to offer and determine which singles and albums truly stood out. Featuring everything from Miley Cyrus-sampling trip-hop to odes to the golden age of rave, here’s the first installment in our annual countdown of 2014’s best dance/electronica tracks.
40) Calvin Harris – “Blame”
Named the world’s richest DJ by Forbes magazine, the 30-year-old Scotsman continued to reign supreme in 2014. But this anthemic collaboration with Northern soul man John Newman was arguably the only time he truly justified his superstar status.
39) Jamie xx – “All Under One Roof Raving”
The xx may have kept a low profile in 2014, but their beatmaker kept himself busy with a string of intriguing 12” singles, including this nostalgic blend of crowd noise, steel drums and spoken-word samples that instantly evoked the golden age of rave.
38) Chromeo – “Come Alive”
Tongue-in-cheek disco duo Chromeo proved they could still get away with the joke on a gloriously glittery space age collaboration with chillwave maestro Toro Y Moi which had it been recorded by a certain French robotic duo, would no doubt have been inescapable this summer.
37) Le Youth – “Dance With Me”
Having previously given Cassie’s “Me & You” a tropical house spin, Chicago-based DJ Le Youth proved he was the master when it came to sampling contemporary R&B classics with this similarly inspired reworking of TLC’s “No Scrubs.”
36) Alt-J – “Hunger of the Pine”
Who saw this coming? On paper, studious Mercury Prize winners Alt-J didn’t seem the likeliest of Miley Cyrus fans, but their sample of Bangerz album track, “4×4,” added a suitably trippy edge to the the synth drones and trip-hop beats of their shadowy comeback single.