Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 123 | Top Tracks of 2019

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Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 123 | Top Tracks of 2019Deters Beat Lab@0.

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory is a weekly collection of songs from DA managing editor Robyn Dexter. With a taste that can only be described as eclectic—to say nothing of a name that lends itself to punnery—DA is happy to present a selection of tracks personally curated by Dexter for your listening pleasure.


When I started using SoundCloud in early 2014, I made playlists weekly (read: obsessively). I’ve backed off a bit in recent years, but I still take time to collect songs for my yearly “best of” playlist, which I create every January and add to throughout the year. In late December for the past five years, I’ve narrowed it down to my 50 favorite releases of the year. They range from hard-hitting anthems to serene soundscapes, which truly sums up my music preferences.

In 2019, I was fortunate enough to premiere a few of my absolute favorite tracks of the year, including The Midnight‘s remix of SYML‘s “Clean Eyes,” Com Truise‘s remix of Gold Fields‘ “Waterfall,” and Essenger‘s “After Dark.” (A big thank you to all the artists who choose DA as their platform to reveal new music—we love you!)

2019 was a stellar year for drum ‘n’ bass, exhibited in tracks like Kove‘s “Le Retour,” Koven‘s “Love Wins Again,” 1991‘s “Guiding Light,” Metrik‘s “Hackers,” and so many more. The genre took some fun twists and turns, which fans heard in Mat Zo‘s Latin-infused “Games” and Sub Focus‘ earth-shattering remix of Bring Me The Horizon‘s “Mother Tongue.”

This year saw the arrival of a slew of monstrous collaborations—some unexpected and some that simply made sense. Regardless, tracks like Sullivan King and Grabbitz‘s “Crazy As You” and Delta Heavy and Zeds Dead‘s “Lift You Up” blew my mind. I was delighted when Fox Stevenson and Feint teamed up on a remix of the former’s “Out My Head,” since it flawlessly combined both their styles.

Speaking of Fox Stevenson, the UK producer released his highly anticipated album, killjoy, this year, and it’s a dynamic journey through all sides of the producer’s capabilities. Goldroom wowed me with his double-sided, multi-faceted Plunge/Surface effort, which has quite a story behind it. I had a hard time picking a favorite from A R I Z O N A‘s nostalgic Asylum LP, which is gorgeous and heart-wrenching from start to finish. I also need to mention what was likely my most-listened-to album of the year, which isn’t on SoundCloud: Ollie Wride’s Thanks in Advance. It’s gold. I lived in the aforementioned albums this year, and I’m so grateful to the artists who made them for sharing their creativity with the world.

Without further ado, here are my 50 favorite songs of 2019, in no particular order.


A look back…

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 118

This post was originally published on this site

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 118Deters Beat Lab@0.

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory is a weekly collection of songs from DA managing editor Robyn Dexter. With a taste that can only be described as eclectic—to say nothing of a name that lends itself to punnery—DA is happy to present a selection of tracks personally curated by Dexter for your listening pleasure.

Listen in playlist format here


The countdown to UKF10 continues, and with it comes the arrival of a new Mat Zo tune. This drum ‘n’ bass tune with some Latin flair sprinkled in is one of the producer’s most refreshing tunes to date. “Games” is both cool and collected and rambunctious and bold. Mat Zo holds nothing back and does so with style.

Drum&BassArena‘s newest release comes from Kove, a talented staple in today’s drum ‘n’ bass scene. The UK producer has followed up August’s grinding release on the label, “The Motor,” with “The Music,” an energetic piece that plays more into the more vocal-based side of Kove’s production. A frenzied vocal rings out over the powerful rhythm, drawing the listener in.

UKF continues to unleash heaters leading up to the UKF10 release on Nov. 29, including T & Sugah‘s “Never Be Alone,” which debuted earlier this week. This smooth dnb tune kicks off with a compelling vocal, quickly building to the commanding tune it soon morphs into. T & Sugah continue to dominate the scene, no matter what label they’re releasing on.

Au5 and Nori‘s Dusk EP hit the airwaves on Nov. 22. The four-track EP is an exploratory compilation that shows a different facet of Au5’s production. “Nori and I wanted to create a work that’s musically different all while exploring where the depths of one’s emotions can take us,” Au5 said of the release.

Dombresky has revealed an uplifting, empowering new house track called “Trust The Process” on Insomniac. The producer told Billboard the track “is not just about literally trusting the process in life, but about believing in yourself along the way.” It features a groovy piano melody, infectious beat, and irresistible vocals and leaves the listener no choice but to feel optimistic upon listening.

Lunar Lunes: Armin van Buuren and Inner City face off on ‘It Could Be,’ Notaker remixes Haywyre + more

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Lunar Lunes: Armin van Buuren and Inner City face off on ‘It Could Be,’ Notaker remixes Haywyre + moreArmin Van Buuren Press Shot Bart Heemskerk

Each week, New Music Friday sweeps through with torrential force, showering streaming platforms with immeasurable amounts of new tunes. Just like Dancing Astronaut rounds up 25 of the biggest songs of the week for the Hot 25 Spotify playlist each New Music Friday, Lunar Lunes serves as a landing pad for SoundCloud users who want a whole new dose of tunes to kick off the work week.

The selection is updated every Lunes (Monday).

Photo credit: Bart Heemskerk

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 109

This post was originally published on this site

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 109Deters Beat Lab@0.

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory is a weekly collection of songs from DA managing editor Robyn Dexter. With a taste that can only be described as eclectic — to say nothing of a name that lends itself to punnery — DA is happy to present a selection of tracks personally curated by Dexter for your listening pleasure.

Listen in playlist format here


When Haywyre‘s “Tell Me” first came out last November, I was immediately hooked. It’s effortlessly funky, incorporating Haywyre’s own vocoder-filtered vocals and array of bright and blissful synth and keyboard elements. As part of a set of remixes, Notaker is the latest to take on the groovy tune. The St. Louis producer has put his own moody, atmospheric spin on the original, packing a serious punch with dramatic builds and hefty bass. It gives an entirely different tone to the piece, and it’s breathtakingly powerful.

Disco overlords Goshfather and Aylen are at it again. The duo have a joint two-track EP out, featuring the previously released “Found You” and the debut of “Coastin’.” The tune seeks to continue the effortless, sun-soaked tone of the summer months, incorporating a retro melody and carefree lyrics to move the steady bassline along. It’s hard not to move your feet to this one.

Liquicity mainstay Maduk is back with new heat. The Dutch producer teamed up with Calixte to create a truly infectious tune. “Everytime” seems subdued enough in the beginning, but steadily builds into a mighty drum ‘n’ bass song. A piano melody and rushing beat carry Calixte’s vocals beautifully from start to finish. “Everytime” is a tune that’s as alluring as its hypnotic cover art.

Fans of Metrik have long anticipated the arrival of “Gravity.” The release is the first time Metrik has ever featured his own vocals, and the addition rounds out what I believe is one of his best releases in recent history. “This track represents a new wave of music I’ve been developing using my voice, guitar & synthesisers and is the purest expression of my sound yet,” Metrik said of the release.

UKF is celebrating its 10th anniversary, and with it comes an exclusive set of singles and EP from the notable platform. The latest of these is Kove‘s “Le Retour,” a drum ‘n’ bass number with cheery horns and an irresistible overall retro style. It’s quite a swerve from its predecessor, “Motor,” which had a decidedly darker feel to it, but the difference in the songs just demonstrates Kove’s ridiculously wide range when it comes to production and sound design.

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 104

This post was originally published on this site

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory Vol. 104Deters Beat Lab@0.

Dexter’s Beat Laboratory is a weekly collection of songs from DA managing editor Robyn Dexter. With a taste that can only be described as eclectic — to say nothing of a name that lends itself to punnery — DA is happy to present a selection of tracks personally curated by Dexter for your listening pleasure.

Listen in playlist format here


On a recent synthwave binge, I stumbled across a group by the name of Lebrock. It only took one track (“Runaway“) for me to become completely hooked, and I was thrilled to see the release of a new tune called “Takes All Night” on Aug. 8. Soak it up in all its retro glory.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Oliver Nelson and Tobtok are a dream team. Their latest piece of work together is no exception, and they add their groovy touch to Wilder Woods’ “Supply & Demand” with ease. A steady-rocking bassline and the original track’s vocals work in harmony for a blissful remix.

UK drum ‘n’ bass aficionado Kove has proven himself force to be reckoned with in 2019 with releases like “Echoes” and “BEARCLAW.” He’s returned in the heart of festival season with a new Drum&BassArena heater, “Motor,” which grinds with all the ferocity of, well, a powerful motor. It’s an epic piece of work.

Aug. 16 marks the release of HEYZ‘s first EP since his Schedule 1 compilation on mau5trap, and the three-track Human 404 is in a league of its own. Tracks like “In My Arms” clearly demonstrate a new sonic path for the producer, and it’s exciting to see. Read my Q&A with him here.

Sullivan King‘s rock-infused touch has been far-reaching in the electronic music sphere since his appearance on the scene, and he’s made a name for himself by continuously demonstrating his versatile skill set. His latest is a cover of Excision and Illenium‘s 2018 collab, “Gold,” and the musician’s vocals work flawlessly with the version he’s created.

NMF Roundup: Skrillex and TroyBoi become ‘WARLORDZ,’ The Bloody Beetroots reveal new EP + more

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NMF Roundup: Skrillex and TroyBoi become ‘WARLORDZ,’ The Bloody Beetroots reveal new EP + moreSkrille Troyboi

It’s most important day of the week: New Music Friday. With the overwhelming amount of tunes hitting the airwaves today, Dancing Astronaut has you covered with the latest edition of The Hot 25.

Skrillex has joined forces with TroyBoi to craft a hefty collaboration, “WARLORDZ,” and The Bloody Beetroots has finally revealed his full five-track Heavy EP. What So Not brings new material with “OOGAHDAM!” and Pryda delivers PRYDA 15 VOL I, containing tracks like “Warrior.” Seven Lions and Fiora take festival season by force with a festival mix of “Let Go,” and Kaskade puts his own spin on Jennifer Lopez’s “Medicine.” The Knocks recruit Nigerian singer Kah-Lo for “Awa Ni,” and The Black Madonna takes “About Work The Dancefloor” to new heights. Kove brings his shadowy style of drum ‘n’ bass to “Bearclaw,” and Lane 8 and Yotto have created a dreamy collaboration, “I / Y.” Armin van Buuren and Benno de Goeij make an appearance as GAIA, delivering the extensive Moons of Jupiter compilation. 3LAU and Bright Lights team up once again on “Down for Life,” and Matroda brings his signature thumping bass to “The One.” Darren Styles keeps happy hardcore alive with “Never Let Me Down,” and Vintage & Morelli is in “Bloom” on his newest release. Kraysh showcases his unique sound on “Void,” and Billy Kenny takes on Kyle Watson and Kylah Jasmine’s “You Boy.”

As each week brings a succession of new music from some of electronic music’s biggest artists, here’s a selection of tracks that shouldn’t be missed this NMF.

NMF Roundup: Dog Blood make a triumphant return, Dillon Francis teams up with lovelytheband, Whethan looks to ‘Win You Over’ + more

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NMF Roundup: Dog Blood make a triumphant return, Dillon Francis teams up with lovelytheband, Whethan looks to ‘Win You Over’ + moreDillon Francis Change Your Mind Preferred Press Shot By Lindsey Byrnes E1553870003361

It’s most important day of the week: New Music Friday. With the overwhelming amount of tunes hitting the airwaves today, Dancing Astronaut has you covered with the latest edition of The Hot 25.

It’s been more than five years since the music world has seen new music from Skrillex and Boys Noize‘s supergroup, Dog Blood, but that wait is finally over with “Turn Off The Lights.” Dillon Francis joins forces with lovelytheband for a, well, lovely collaboration called “Change Your Mind.” Armin van Buuren, Lucas & Steve, and Josh Cumbee deliver a feel-good number by the name of “Don’t Give Up On Me,” and Nicky Romero, DallasK, and XYLØ create a contemplative, low-key collaboration, “Sometimes.” Whethan and Bearson have crafted an effortlessly groovy “Win You Over” with SOAK, and Seven Lions and Kill The Noise take things up a notch with the formidable “The Blood.” Bassnectar reveals his Reflective Part Four EP is on its way with “Illusion,” and Kove keeps his brand of drum & bass subtle and smooth with “Echoes.” Jai Wolf and Dresage come together in “Better Apart,” and NGHTMRE and A$AP Ferg make a powerful pair in “REDLIGHT.” Sam Feldt brings summer a few months early with “One Day” with ROZES and Yves V, and Zomboy brings “The Beast” with his new single. The Chainsmokers prep for their new album with “Kills You Slowly,” and Mielo releases his Anywhere But Here EP, featuring a closing song of the same title.

As each week brings a succession of new music from some of electronic music’s biggest artists, here’s a selection of tracks that shouldn’t be missed this NMF.

Exclusive: Kove delivers subtle and smooth ‘Echoes’ as first 2019 offering

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Exclusive: Kove delivers subtle and smooth ‘Echoes’ as first 2019 offeringPressshot Kove E1553700584123

In his first release of 2019, British producer Kove offers a powerful liquid drum & bass number on Drum&BassArena.

“Echoes” looks to kick off Kove’s year in fine fashion, measuring out a subtle and smooth track with vocalist Ben Duffy. Duffy’s vocals cast an almost mysterious spell on the track’s swift-moving beat, giving the entirety of “Echoes” a enigmatic aura. Kove’s production is better than ever on this newest offering, leaving listeners wanting more and wondering what’s in store for the remainder of the year.

The track marks Kove’s return to Drum&BassArena for the first time since late 2017, where he unleashed his four-track In From the Cold EP. The style he returns with is similar, too, though “Echoes” delivers a more subdued sonic experience than energetic tracks like “Valkyrie.”

He told DA in 2017 that the drum & bass scene “seems super healthy at the moment” and shows continued support for the ever-evolving genre through its ups and down across the globe.