Christine & The Queens
Girlfriend (Palms Trax remix)
‘Girlfriend’ spawned three great remixes from Dam-Funk, Gerd Janson and my favourite from Palms Trax, which brings it into an electronic-disco field and works magic with the vocals.
007 – Side A
The Soulwax brothers’ Waffles label has been essential buying across 7 records now and this edit of ‘Tokimeki’ from Japanese artist Akiko Yano and has an immediate effect with its swirling synthline and bassline that ascends with its ‘why don’t you come and get it?” chorus.
A highlight from the Arklow singer’s most excellent year in a while, ‘The Rumble’ features on the last of four 12” releases produced by Maurice Fulton. As with many of the dance-friendly tracks released by Murphy this year, the song takes a while to get under the skin with its call and response vocals, but by the time the backing vocals kick in, its earworm status is complete and it feels time to let go and give in to the repeat button.
At Night (Peggy Gou remix)
Another release where the remixes are all worth keeping from Purple Disco Machine, Shakedown themselves (Mandrax and Seb K) and Tiger & Woods all bring their A-Game. But it’s Peggy Gou that edges them with that breakdown.
One of the biggest dancefloor fillers of 2018. DJ Koze’s ‘Pick Up’ has never made heartbreak sound so good. While navigating the many sub-genres of dance music can be a bit tricky, pedantic even, this is a clear-cut disco house banger, melancholic yet uplifting, built from an often-used Gladys Night sample.
Brame & Hamo
Sligo producers Brame & Hamo’s ‘Roy Keane’ stepped it up into 2018 with this funky, upbeat and euphoric track that will make you do exactly what its lyrics suggest and something you can’t imagine Roy Keane doing…dance.
Azoto – Anytime or Place ( Mix & Fairbanks Notions mix)
Kildare does it again. Mix & Fairbanks’ edit of Azoto’s ‘Anytime or Place’ never failed to light up a dancefloor any time I or the Lumo DJs played it this year. It’s a huge tune that only just got an official release on LA label Pleasure of Love. Mix & Fairbanks are only getting started but they’re already dropping iconic remixes.
Opal (Four Tet Remix)
Songs can’t be divorced from context and this Four Tet remix of a song from Belfast duo Bicep’s self-titled album, was one that worked in DJ sets and open-air arenas all over this year – from Body&Soul to Primavera Sound to headphones listens to Lumo Club, ‘Opal’ brings tightrope energy to a polychromatic synth release that marches forward determined to slay all in its uplifting path.
The dance song of the summer is a hotly-contested accolade, crowned by an unspoken agreement across cultural, national and societal divides but ‘Neutron Dance’ was certainly a big contender. Dubliner Dec Lennon’s propulsive and jaunty electro-stomper has crowds across Europe singing its instrumental hook and was just one in an embarrassment of riches of great tunes for Krystal Klear this year.
It Makes You Forget (Itgehenae)
‘It Makes You Forget (Itgehane)’ was a constant in 2018. A tropical sojourn with air-filled rhythm, brightly-coloured melodies and Korean vocals by Gou herself. It never got old and was never far away from the play button, at home or in the club.
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