Who knew that a sound birthed in the UK underground during the earlier part of this decade would grow to the colossal status it has today? As this new era of dubstep is birthed, let’s take a look back on some of the best wobbly tunes from the past year. Get ready for some bass.
Mt Eden ft Ruby Frost – Oh That I Had
Mt Eden feat Ruby Frost - Oh That I Had
Breaking the genre’s stereotypes of angry bass synths and kicking off our countdown, New Zealand’s Mt Eden are captains of mixing chill beats with heartfelt female vocals. Having produced the almost universally recognized and genre-defining track Sierra Leone, these two show with Oh That I Had just how to turn the energy down a bit and enjoy an intimate moment with the beautiful voice of Ruby Frost.
Skream ft Sam Frank – Where You Should Be (Original Mix)
Skream feat Sam Frank - Where You Should Be (Original Mix) [Hydra]
Definitely most famous for his remix of La Roux’s In For The Kill, Skream’s tracks are an introduction to top notch dubstep and drum’n’bass for many. Reaching boatloads of new fans in 2010, Skream is no prisoner of his sound. His track Where You Should Be makes great use of retro synths to create a sound he can really call his own.
Rusko – You’re On My Mind Baby
Rusko - You're On My Mind Baby
Wielding a gigantic fanbase and producing the wildly celebrated album O.M.G. this year, Rusko’s career is busting through glass ceilings like a jackhammer. With tracks as catchy as his name, Chris Mercer has traveled the world and is even working on incorporating dubstep beats on the new Britney Spears album. An elaborate track, You’re On My Mind Baby tastefully mashes many elements of trance with a smooth break that was impressive enough to land him a spot at #13 on our countdown.
Magnetic Man – MAD
Magnetic Man - MAD
Fans worldwide praised the Magnetic Man union of Skream, Benga, and Artwork. Putting out an album together under the same name, these three proved to be a powerful team, leaving nothing but destruction at all their shows. With one massive bassline and an incredibly addicting melody, MAD truly intensifies the genre’s best tones and rhythm. Props to Skream for being one of two artists to show up twice on our countdown, too.
We Bang! – Smash The Floor (Original Mix)
We Bang - Smash The Floor (Original Mix) [Play Me]
Merging housey piano melodies, tasteful breaks, and nasty wubbs, We Bang! is one jack-of-all-trades. Truly sprouting from the underground, Greg Oerlemans of Santa Ana, California aimed and scored high with his Goliath banger Smash The Floor in 2010. Its success is quite an impressive feat considering the track’s lack of vocals.
Bassnectar ft Tina Malia – Underwater (Original Mix)
Bassnectar feat Tina Malia - Underwater (Original Mix) [Amorphous]
Drowning out the competition, Bassnectar’s Wildstyle EP unleashed a tidal wave of brutalizing beats in 2010. One tune of mention off the EP is our #10 track Underwater, a beastly track that’ll have you scrambling to turn up the volume. Pulsing with dark energy, this acclaimed artist from San Francisco performed a spectacular job of adding tremendous gravity to Tina Malia’s somber vocals.
Afrojack feat Eva Simons – Take Over Control (Adam F Remix)
Afrojack feat Eva Simons - Take Over Control (Adam F Remix) [Breakbeat Kaos]
The original being a monstrous electro house hit, Adam F took control of this production and created one diabolical remix. Flawlessly deepening the track’s chasms, ripping its bass synths to pieces, and creating interesting new arrangements for the vocal, this talented musician had a lot of fun with this one. You can tell simply by listening.
WTF? ft Dead Prez – It’s Bigger Than Hip Hop UK (Full Vocal Mix)
WTF? feat Dead Prez - It's Bigger Than Hip Hop UK (Full Vocal Mix) [Breakbeat Kaos]
Taking one of the most legitimate hip hop classics and dubbing it out was a brilliant move on behalf of London’s WTF? aka DJ Fresh and #9’s Adam F. The timeless rhymes of the 1999 rap tune Bigger Than Hip Hop by Dead Prez seamlessly integrate with the smashing bass drops of today’s dirtiest dancefloors in a way that blurs the line between dubstep and hip hop even further.
Nero – Me & You (Original Mix)
Nero - Me & You (Original Mix) [MTA]
No 2010 list would be complete without Nero’s Me & You anthem. Already having pumped out multiple hits in the past year, they certainly teased us with its long-awaited release. A triumphant fusion of drums, guitars, and Alana Watson’s driving vocals, this track was born to wreck speakers and deafen clubgoers. Hold onto your seat.
Stellamara – Prituri se Planinata (NiT GriT Remix)
Stellamara - Prituri se Planinata (NiT GriT Remix)
One of the best aspects of dubstep is how it openly lends itself to wide experimentation. Expressing his diverse taste in music, California’s very own NiT GriT pulled a spectacular number when he remixed Balkan folk track Prituri se Planinata, originally performed by Stellamara. The gritty, doomsday feel to this epic track is just the kind of dark atmosphere that this Bay area DJ is known for, and just the sound that really separates him from the pack.
Zeds Dead ft Omar LynX – Out For Blood (Original Mix)
Zeds Dead feat Omar LinX - Out For Blood (Original Mix) [Get Hype]
Cracking the top five are some of the wildest performers in the scene, Canada’s Zeds Dead are as crazy in the studio as they are onstage. Matching their aggressive energy, emcee Omar LynX really brought down the roof on Out For Blood with head banging rhymes over the duo’s relentless beats.
Chase & Status ft Liam Bailey – Blind Faith (Original Mix)
Chase & Status feat Liam Bailey - Blind Faith (Original Mix)
Always staying fresh and on top of their game, Chase & Status finished off the year with another explosive hit by the name of Blind Faith. Fusing the soulful vocals of Liam Bailey, rumbling basslines, and triumphant strings, this track starts its own party with fists held high in the air.
Laid Blak – Red (Chasing Shadows Remix)
Laid Blak - Red (Chasing Shadows Remix) [H.E.N.C.H.]
You’d think taking peaceful reggae dub and injecting it with a pulverizing bassline would be an awful mistake, but Chasing Shadows have made doing this into an art. Remixing Laid Blak’s heartfelt song Red, this track will bury you with an avalanche of bass. It even comes complete with a air raid siren to warn its victims of the impending onslaught. Also decisively loved the world over for remix of Damian Marley’s It Was Written, these two from the UK are professionals at meshing the two genres.
DJ Fresh – Gold Dust (Flux Pavilion Remix)
DJ Fresh - Gold Dust (Flux Pavilion Remix) [Breakbeat Kaos]
Exterminating enormous crowds across the globe this year, Flux Pavilion’s remix of Gold Dust by DJ Fresh has permanently engraved this London chap into the dubstep hall of fame. Worshipped by bassheads everywhere, this monster track powerfully rocks the unforgettable vocals of Jamaica’s very own Ce’cile. With many more enormous releases in 2010, this young DJ/producer’s career is busting through the roof.
Skrillex – Scary Monsters & Nice Sprites (Original Mix)
Skrillex - Scary Monsters & Nice Sprites (Original Mix)
Straight out of Los Angeles and to the top of our charts, Skrillex has had one hell of a successful year! Combining hostile basslines and friendly melodies, this former emo-rockstar is now a household name in the dance music scene. By the same name as his wildly successful EP, Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites introduced the world to a wonderfully unique and creative sound appealing to even the harshest critics. Perhaps one of the most admirable qualities about Sonny Moore is how he explores many styles of EDM rather than limiting himself to one specific genre. It’s clearly working for him–our congrats to Skrillex for topping our chart.