The 101 Most Vital Tracks of 2014 | 101 - 91

From George Maple's buzzy "Talk Talk" to Technimatic's drum & bass heater "Looking for Diversion" here's what starts our 101 track countdown.

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17 December 2014, 7:00pm

101. Calvin Harris: "Summer" [Deconstruction/Columbia]


Dance music 101, literally: Harris trolled a world obsessed with the concept of "the song of the summer" with one so incontrovertibly suited for the title it's called "Summer." Hate all you want, you can't fault the track's (and the producer's) insouciance to that thing called credibility. -ZM


 

100. Nick Monaco : "Private Practice" [Wolf + Lamb Records]

The first 90 seconds of Nick Monaco's "Private Practice"—mumbling vocal harmonies and a snare drum—is so distinct from most of what follows yet at the same time act as the track's sonic spinal chord, animating all other action. Practice makes a very intriguing record. -ZM


 

99. Katy B : "Crying For No Reason" (Infinity Ink Remix) [Ammunition]

Ms. B's earnest ballad exposed a more fragile, insecure side to the confident red-haired UK club kid. Infinity Ink put a sultry beat beat and some raw percussion behind her revelations, giving everyone a chance to dance to Katy's tears. -JK

98. Tensnake featuring Fiora : "See Right Through" [Astralwerks]

While his debut LP, Glow, features a few deviations from the his typical summery house sound, "See Right Through," Tensnake's heavenly collaboration with vocalist Fiora, finds the artist in a space he's most comfortable. -DG

97. Technimatic : "Looking for Diversion" [Shogun Audio]

British d'n'b is alive and well (as true heads well know). Not since the glory days of jungle have the feels seeped so deep into a breakbeat as they do in Technimatic's haunting and soulful ditty about searching in vain for a certain feeling. -JK

96. Far East Movement : "Level (Palm Trees)" [Cherrytree/Interscope]

Windows down, subwoofer rattling, sunshine in your hair is the only way to listen to this blissed-out, chopped-and-screwed cut of instrumental hip-hop. There's a political message about equality in here too, but these Angelenos keep it pretty chill. So chill you can practically smell the indica. -ML


 

95. Madeon featuring Kyan : "You're On" [popcultur/Columbia]

Madeon has had bigger years than 2014, but that's only because he's been in the lab, prepping for a massive 2014. Gone is the glitch, erratic styling of the French child we all fell in love with. The Madeon that produced "You're On" is composed, mature, and flush with emotion. -ZR


 

94. Shamir : "On the Regular" [XL]

Las Vegas lad Shamir smashed it in 2014 with a smattering of cowbell-heavy disco-indebted slices of dance-pop perfection. The outstanding moment of his year was this intoxicatingly sweet take on the glory days of DFA... that is, if they'd ever bothered to sign a band with a decent singer. -JB


 

93. George Maple : "Talk Talk" [Future Classic]

The Flume-produced single from George Maple's upcoming EP, Vacant Space, is a testament to just how much we can expect from this Australian singer next year. "Talk Talk" combines Flume's cinematic builds and crescendos with Maple's stunning voice in an entirely unique, awe-inspiring fashion. -ZR


 

92. M.I.A. : "Double Bubble Trouble" [N.E.E.T/Interscope]


The Sri Lankan provocateur's island-inspired rework of Shampoo's 1994 punk-rap tune "Trouble" came replete with a suitably controversial video filled with 3-D printed guns, drones, and subversive hijabs. In typical MIA fashion, she looked like she wasn't even trying as she out-Diplo'd Diplo on the dancehall tip. -JK

91. Awanto 3 : "So What" [Rush Hour Records]


Awanto 3, the alias of producer Steven Vanhulle, opens his inaugural LP with an in-the-pocket groove narrated by a neverending call and response that systematically rumbles into blissful chaos. Who knows what the call is saying; it all translates to gyration. -JF


 

Words by THUMP Staff: Zel McCarthy, Jemayel Khawaja, Michelle Lhooq, David Garber, Ziad Ramley, Josh Baines, Olyvia Salyer, Dylan Coburn and Joel Fowler