It was another prodigious year for music—and The Nocturnal Times names 2016s biggest track releases on The Nocturnal Times Top Electronic/Dance Tracks of 2016
Each year, there are hundreds of thousands tracks released across thousands of labels; some make their way under our skin or into our hearts to leave an everlasting impression. Among many of the various electronic music sub-genres, we’ve selected 116 of the best tracks released this year. Over the course of the last 12 months, these songs were among the elite in one way or another. Whether captivating festival main stages, nightclubs, or even the airwaves, our favorite selections have inspired, impacted, and left their mark on the year in music.
Many veteran producers returned this year, including Underworld, who scored a Grammy Award-nomination for Best Electronic Album with Barbara Barbara, We Face A Shining Future; Justice, who released their Woman album; Daft Punk, who joined The Weeknd on “Starboy” and “I Feel It Coming;” Way Out West, and Pet Shop Boys.
Anticipated album releases from acts such as Deadmau5, Eric Prydz, ECO, Steve Angello, Markus Schulz, Adventure Club, Kygo, GTA, Dusky, and DJ Snake, just to name a few of those included on The Nocturnal Times Top 16 Electronic/Dance Albums of 2016, delivered numerous noteworthy tracks, which are included among our selection.
Breakout artists this year such as RÜFÜS DU SOL, Marshmello, No Mana, ZHU, Illenium, Lost Frequencies, Alle Farben, CID, San Holo, Autograf, Matoma, Louis The Child, AFSHeeN, and more.
Some of the notable remixed selections this year come from Black Coffee (Alicia Keys “In Common”); RÜFÜS DU SOL (ODESZA “It’s Only” feat. Zyra); Dash Berlin (The Chainsmokers “New York City”); RAC (Bob Moses “Tearing Me Up”); Tiësto (Alan Walker “Faded”); ilan Bluestone & Maor Levi (Armin van Buuren “Make It Right” feat. Angel Taylor); Big Wild (ZHU “Generationwhy”); Boombox Cartel (Major Lazer “Cold Water” feat. Justin Bieber;” and Disclosure (Flume “Never Be Like Me” feat. Kai); among a slew of others.
In terms of team-up’s this year, 2016 saw the joining forces of: Porter Robinson & Madeon (“Shelter”); Skrillex & Rick Ross (“Purple Lamborghini”); Big Gigantic & GRiZ (“C’mon”); Alex M.O.R.P.H. & Paul van Dyk (“We Are”); Kaskade & Felix Cartal (“Fakin It”); Otto Knows & Avicii (“Back Where I Belong”); Seven Lions & Illenium feat. HALIENE (“Rush Over Me”); Tiësto & John Legend (“Summer Nights”); Zeds Dead & Diplo (“Blame”); among others.
This year was the year of the crossover. Just when you thought 2015 was an explosive year for EDM, in came 2016 to prove last year wrong. Acts like The Chainsmokers, DJ Snake, Skrillex, Grammy Award-nominated Flume, Calvin Harris, and Major Lazer made themselves heard not just in DJ sets but also on the airwaves. Famed acts such as The Weeknd and Gallant released electronic-heavy tunes this year, while Justin Bieber had another big year infiltrating the EDM world.
The Chainsmokers blurred the lines between pop sensations and dance music phenomenons with an explosive crossover year. The guys topped the Billboard Hot 100 with “Closer” feat. Halsey for a record-breaking 12 weeks at number one—making it the year’s biggest single on the chart with the most weeks at the top spot. Drew Taggart and Alex Pall, best known as The Chainsmokers, also released monster tunes during the year, such as “Don’t Let Me Down” feat. Daya, “All We Know” feat. Phoebe Ryan, “Inside Out” feat. Charlee, and “Setting Fires” feat. XYLØ.
Gareth Emery’s “100 Reasons To Live” album boasted top singles of the year, “Reckeless” with Wayward Daughter, “Lost (Ferry Corsten Remix)” feat. Janet Devlin, “Save Me (John O’Callaghan Remix)” feat. Christina Novelli, “Sansa,” and “CVNT5” with Ashely Wallbridge. Emery’s remixes of Lost Frequencies “Beautiful Life” feat. Sandro Cavazza and Tritonal feat. Angel Taylor “Getaway” with Ashely Wallbridge are also among The Nocturnal Times top picks.
A State of Trance master and Armada Music co-founder, Armin van Buuren, renders another colossal year with releases across his various sub-labels within his Armada imprint. From solo tunes, collaborations, remixes, and releases under his Gaia and Rising Star monikers, van Buuren will celebrate 20 years in dance music come 2017. “Embrace (Andrew Rayel Remix),” “Freefall” feat. BullySongs, “Heading Up High” feat. Kensington, “Make It Right” feat. Angel Taylor, “If It Ain’t Dutch” with W&W, Gaia “Inyathi,” and Rising Star “Again” feat. Betsie Larkin were all released this year by the trance titan.
Listen to all of the selections below:
Above & Beyond – A.I. (Anjunabeats)
SLANDER & Yookie feat. Jinzo – After All (Never Say Die Records)
Dirty South feat. ANIMA! – All Of Us (Phazing)
Marshmello – Alone (Monstercat)
OceanLab – Another Chance (Above & Beyond Club Mix) (Anjunabeats)
Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, W&W – Arcade (Smash The House)
Otto Knows feat. Avicii – Back Where I Belong (Big Beat Records/Disconap)
RÜFÜS DU SOL – Be With You (Sweat It Out!/Foreign Family Collective)
Lost Frequencies feat. Sandro Cavazza – Beautiful Life (Gareth Emery Remix) (LOST & CIE/Armada/Ultra)
Sam Feldt – Been A While (Spinnin’ Deep)
Ilan Bluestone feat. Giuseppe DeLuca – Bigger Than Love (David Gravell Remix) (Anjunabeats)
Zeds Dead & Diplo feat. Elliphant – Blame (Deadbeats)
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