Our Favorites of 2013: Part 1 - Songs
Mike Walkusky: "Jack" - Breach
The first time I heard this song was at Beyond Wonderland in San Bernardino. I will never forget that moment. I was watching Maya Jane Coles, and she dropped this song in her set; the deep bass instantly hit me deep in my soul. At the outset of the song, it was obvious that hardly anyone in the crowd was familiar with the track. However, by the time the song ended, everyone was belting out its infectious chorus. I was grinning from ear to ear and dancing my heart out while yelling, "I want your body; everybody wants your body, so let's jack!" I previously knew about the concept of "jacking" from old Chicago house tracks, but I'd never heard it used in today's EDM world. I love that Breach brought "jack" back into our vernacular with this hypnotizing tune. Also, "Jack" was one of the few deep house tunes that weasled its way into the mainstream, as it received support from Laidback Luke, Tiesto, Kaskade, Diplo, and Calvin Harris.
Deanna Krolowitz: "Shut Up and Sing V2.0 v Greta Svabo Bech" - Zeds Dead
This track not only screams that unique Zeds Dead style to it, but it combines dubstep with melodic yet heartbreaking vocals that always evoke emotion from me whether I'm hearing it live on the dance floor or just in the comfort of my own room. To me, it's all about finding that balance when creating the perfect song for all dance music fans.
2013 was a year full of amazing dance music from various genres. Rather than create a meaningless list that rattles off an extremely subjective "top ten songs of 2013," we decided to have each EDM.com staff member contribute their favorite track of the year. Underneath each writer's selection, there is a brief description of why the song took precedence over anything else they heard in 2013. Take a look at the selections below!
Robby Engle: Turn Down For What - DJ Snake & Lil Jon
I don't think there's a song out there that gets me more excited than "Turn Down For What." The song just has that special ability to make you stop what you're doing and dance. To me, the song's ability to get an entire dance floor rocking was critical to my decision of naming it my favorite track of 2013.
Barrett Nelson: "Z" - Eptic and MUST DIE!
Appearing on Eptic's Doom EP, "Z" was unquestionably my favorite dubstep tune of 2013. I remember speaking to Lee (MUST DIE!) before his show in Chicago a few months back, and he warned me that it was going to be the first time he tested out "Z" on a live crowd. IT WENT OFF! His excitement on stage while dropping this monster was palpable. I even remember him exclaiming at one point, "Datsik hasn't even heard this yet!" I think I may have laughed my way through the entire song because I didn't know how else to react to the pure dubstep madness. The feeling was indescribable! Now, it goes without saying that Eptic and MUST DIE! each had GIGANTIC years in 2013. And while their styles are distinctly different, they work unbelievably well in unison. "Z" presented the world with a sensational combination of Eptic's recognizable synths and MUST DIE!'s body-ravaging bass. This one of a kind track has left an impression on my ears that I won't soon forget
Shorne Stevens: "Soap" - Savant
Savant has an incredible knack for shattering the stereotypical expectations growing ever the more common in popular dance music. Orakel, his latest 20 track LP release, broke down these boundaries with a divergent range of retro fitted new styles. "Soap" is my personal favorite track of 2013 and is a conglomeration of electro and deep house. Between the neverending drive, joyful bounce, and chord progression engineered for happiness, there is something for everyone in Savant's amazing original mix "Soap."
Matt Flaherty: If I Lose Myself (Alesso Remix) - Alesso Vs One Republic
This track is hands down amazing. From the build, to the drop, to the vocals, everything is perfect. It's an emotional and uplifting track that reminds me of all the great times I've had singing it with friends and thousands of other people at all the awesome music festivals I've attended in the past year.
Hunter Mulich: "Without You" - Dillon Francis feat. Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs
This song was a curveball, and in the best way possible. It spawned from a complicated relationship and became a tune that transcends what is thought of when we hear the term "EDM." It's a love song about a breakup. It's danceable, but it's intimate. It's happy, and it's sad, and "Without You" will stick with me longer than any other song I heard this year. Plus, that snap in the drop is just so damn good.
Ally Balcerzak: "Strangers" - Seven Lions with Myon and Shane 54 feat. Tove Lo
This song had me hooked from the beginning, and then it just kept getting better. The lyrics beg to be sung whether you're driving in traffic or standing in a crowd of thousands, and it's impossible to not dance when the drop comes. I've never seen a crowd erupt like it did when Myon and Shane 54 played this track during a small show in Buffalo the night before Thanksgiving. No matter how many times I listen to it, "Strangers" never gets old and always puts a smile on my face.
Mike Jago: "Starlight (Could You Be Mine)" - Don Diablo & Matt Nash (Otto Knows Remix)
I'm not sure why I love this song so much...but it took the original and did something that was unbelievable. Everytime I hear the track, I have to stop what I'm doing because I think it is produced that well. Otto Knows was one of my favorite producers of 2013, and this track was one of the reasons why!
Tim Hirschfeld: "Iris" - Audien
After way too many spins, it still hasn't gotten old to me. "Iris" is arguably the crown jewel in Audien's catalog thus far, and felt like an evolution of his sound from the success he found on the festival circuit with "Wayfarer." I will always associate this song with driving into a hazy sunset, windows down; letting the achingly beautiful piano melodies wash over my ears. The best songs make you forget about everything the moment put them on, and "Iris" continues to do that for me.