Records I Like Best of 2021

Happy new year to all those who read the blog or just pass by. So the first post of 2022 is the tracks that grabbed me most in 2021. No mix this year (maybe that will come later) so without further ado the 25, er 27 tracks that caught my ears in more ways than one.

This list is not in order of preference and is in order of when I first wrote about the tracks in question. So dig into a selection box of goodies covering electronica to post-punk, indiepop to punk and ambient to techno.

As ever I have posted a number of playlists and Youtube samplers which you can find here.

EDIT – the playlist mix is now available.

Flyying Colours – Goodtimes

It’s fuzzy and hypnotic whilst the male/female vocal chime in unison.

The Shop Window – Out Of Reach

If the indie club dancefloors ever re-open this C-86/Britpop hybrid will surely be the one to greet the dancers back.

Pale Blue Eyes – Motionless

The recurring beats are catchy and it’s pretty hard to keep my feet still.

Nilotika Cultural Ensemble – Ejokawulidaby

Ejokawulida is based on rhythms of Iteso traditional music from the eastern part of Uganda whilst Kekusimbe is inspired by a variant of Bugandan traditional music called Bakisiimb. It’s an astonishing listen.

Dense & Pika – Oxbow

Back in the day (very far back considering it was the early 1990s!) I was a massive fan (er still am) of Progressive House and tracks from the likes of Leftfield, Spooky etc. This track by Dense & Pika takes me back to those days with its intricate rhythms and beats.

Dayflower – In the Clouds

I have to say this is simply outstanding from Leicester’s Dayflower. Mixing indiepop and 1960s girl band influences it results in a dreamy, hazy mix.

The Catenary Wires – Mirrorball

It’s a bouncy feelgood indiepop number that should bring a smile to your face as it does to the song’s protagonists.

SPC ECO – The Hollows

I am not got going to lie to you and say that it doesn’t remind me of Massive Attacks Teardrop in places but there it is.

Poco_ – 蝶々

海月 (Jellyfish) is a frantic, fuzzy and addictive listen with the distinctive vocals cutting loose.

Ghost Transmission – Stand Still

The song itself is a bit like 1960s girl bands meeting The Shop Assistants Somewhere In China and Strawberry Switchblade’s Trees and Flowers along the way.

Auld Spells – I Want You Back

The two bounce off each other as the tale of a man who gets caught trying to cheat gets his comeuppance as he is the one who eventually gets cheated on.

Tough Age – Giuseppe Pizzeria

However, it’s the riffs and melodies that get me hooked, leaving me wanting another slice after slice.

Girl Ray – Give Me Your Love

I cannot wait to hear the full 7-minute version that this radio remix has whetted my appetite for. (and I did and here it is!)

Kælan Mikla – Ósýnileg

The new single from Icelandic post-punk band Kælan Mikla is a thing of beauty. The combination of the sound and vocals is incredible.

Poster Paints – Number 1

I was listening to the latest episode of Emma’s House when Stephan played a track that stopped me from what I was doing at the time.

Bridge Dog – Lemon

I had to double-check that they come from Sydney rather than Bandung because it’s a retro sound perfected by their Indonesian peers.

100 Лет Октября – Перестройка

Taken from amazing an EP themed around the Space Race and the Soviet Union. As wonderful as the artwork.

Le Pain – Troisième Groupe

It has more than a hint of the 1960s about it and is a lovely song that should make everyone feel so much better when they hear it!

Dummy – Daffodils

I won’t mention Sterolab if you don’t!

Nkom Bivoué – Alert

Cameroon’s Nkom Bivoué is one of my favourite artists of the year so far and as I am a sucker for techno with planets and space themes and Bivoué’s music is no exception.

Film School – Take What You Need

………it has to be said that Take What You Need is possibly the best thing the band have recorded to date.

English Summer – Tall Stories

Tall Stories sounds like it is a long lost abandoned single by The Bodines for Creation Records circa mid 1980s.

White Flowers – Underwater

Preston’s White Flowers new single Underwater is a piece of beautiful ethereal ambient music. It’s not far removed from Brian Eno’s works in a number of respects to be honest.

Robin Guthrie – Eight East

Eight East is a stunning piece of evocative ethereal ambient music…..

Massage – In Gray & Blue

Massage reveal their inner New Order on new single In Gray & Blue so much so it could easily be a long lost Brotherhood era classic.

Kindsight – Don’t You Grow Up

The band are fast clawing out their own identity and this shimmering number, which would go down well in a post-covid mosh pit, emphasises that.

Boss – Cash Em In

Pub violence has never sounded so catchy.

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