Night Tracks Of The Year - Top Ten

So here it is, you've read 50-41, 40-31, 30-21 and 20-11, and now we've finally reached the top ten. The ten tracks I feel were the best ten released this year that really fitted the Night Tracks vibe. I'm not trying to be a tastemaker or anything, just merely showing you my favourite tunes, maybe some you didn't know. Drop me a comment below and let us know YOUR favourite Night Track of the year. Anyway, we start off with...

10. Burial, Four Tet & Thom Yorke - Ego (from Ego/Mirror (Text))

This release appeared out of nowhere, announced and sold out all whilst I was on lunch, and it's easy to see why. 3 giants from separate areas, Burial from Garage/Dubstep, Four Tet from a more electronica/IDM scene and Thom Yorke from one of the biggest bands of the last 20 years. This was the stronger side of the two, as I feel it represented all 3 of the artists more completely than the flip. (Buy here unfortunately)

9. Joy O - Jels (from Wade In/Jels (Hotflush Recordings))

Joy O returned to Hotflush, the home of his immense debut, with this 4x4 monster, that showed even the club has room for Night Tracks. Whilst there has been a lot of "Acid House" released this year, this was one of the stand out examples of that sort of sound, but the thing that clinched 9th place for Jels was THAT PIANO that really should've made an appearance well before the last minute of the track. (Buy here)

8. Drake - Marvin's Room (from Take Care (Young Money))

I know, I know, a music blog proclaims Marvin's Room to be one of the best tracks of the year. Hear me out though, check the atmosphere on this track. Noah "40" Shebib has killed it, and in an almost Weeknd-ish way, hearing the lyrics sung by Drake makes the story more believable. Chart music has had a seriously weak year, but if there's more like this from the bigger artists like Drake, then maybe there's a light at the end of the tunnel. (Buy here)

7. Clouds - Rest Of The Cycle (from Lots Of Calls From No One Pt. 2 (Deep Medi))

In a year that has seen the likes of Pinch, Skream, Goth Trad and Vivek release on Deep Medi, who would've thought that it would be the understated and much underrated release by Finland's clouds that would be the label's best in 2011? This eerie number, with the flickery, ghost like drums was to me more powerful than any of the rib-shaking, earth-quaking releases that Deep Medi put out, and that is high praise, as tracks like Swish and The Big Bang are not to be sniffed at. This release is just another marker of Mala's impeccable tastes. (Buy here)

6. Cairo & Svpreme Fiend - Untitled (from Other Heights White Label #2 (Other Heights))

It was another great year for one of my favourite labels, and a label that definitely deserves more credit and exposure overall, Other Heights. This was my favourite release put out by them this year. This stripped back, garage-y roller had perfect piano melodies over the top and ghostly vocals that make it a perfect Night Track, and I'd definitely suggest getting your hands on this release before it's too late, and definitely, definitely keep an eye out for Other Heights next releases! (Buy here)

5. Be-1ne - Cane Cutter (from Cane Cutter/Soar (Area Recordings))

Simply put, the best "pure" dubstep release of the year. Area Recordings always had consistent quality coming out, but this year saw Be-1ne's crowning moment so far. After those ghostly chimes keep you on edge for the first 50 seconds or so, the track gives way to one of the best drops in dubstep history. I'm struggling to find the right words about the drums on that drop, so I won't even bother, just believe me, they're good. Something that really impresses me with Be-1ne's releases, and most primarily with this release, is the way he engineers the bass so that you don't just hear it, but it seems to fill your whole room, seeping into every corner. Buy this, and watch it become one of your most played pieces. (Buy here)

4. Zomby & Reark - Natalia's Song (from Natalia's Song (4AD))

EDIT: Read this. (Buy here)

3. Bonecold - Rekca (from Somnipath (Broken Bubble))

This track first reared its head (as far as I'm aware) on a mix by Ghostek a few years ago, and I instantly tried to find out anything about Bonecold that I could, but there was little out there. You can imagine my joy when I sit down at work one monday morning, and check out some of the new releases. I spy an email from the label, Broken Bubble, announcing an album by, yep, you guessed it, Bonecold, and there, right at the end of the tracklist was Rekca. This tune is ambient without being ambient, with bass warps, and jangly hats and snares in all the right places. Just listen to it, you won't regret it. (Buy here)

2. Burial - Stolen Dog (from Street Halo EP (Hyperdub))

This release marked a massive departure by the ever elusive Burial from the styles that defined his album Untrue and the earlier releases on Hyperdub, and the stand out track was definitely Stolen Dog. Burial had never made anything like this before, dropping the tempo from around 140 to the 110-130 area, and working with synth melodies, which came as a bit of shock, but still retained that Burial vibe, with the mournful vocals, except they worked over shuffling, house-y drums rather than the pounding, garage-y rhythm everyone expected. Whilst most people seemed to prefer, Street Halo or NYC, it was definitely Stolen Dog's uniqueness that pipped it for me. (Buy here)

1. Sully - 2 Hearts (from Carrier (Keysound Recordings))

2011 really did belong to Blackdown's Keysound Recordings, and getting Sully on board for an entire album has got to be one of the best moves they could've made. The criminally underrated producer is responsible for Night Tracks' Track of the Year, 2 Hearts. This track burst straight out of opener (and no. 14 on this list) It's Your Love with all the swing and attitude that his previous release on Keysound and Toffee Apple had hinted at and brought everybody that listened to it back to 2001 briefly. If you read our interview with Sully back in November, you'll know that this was (at least at one point) considered by Burial for his never-to-come-out mix compilation for DJ Kicks, and that is saying something, especially as there was a collaboration between the two planned off the back of it. 2-Step drums, bouncy bassline, neon synths and a female vocal, is there a better combination? Not this year there wasn't. (Buy here)

Review the list in full:
50-41 - 40-31 - 30-21 - 20-11