Laurel Halo, Courtesy and more make the year-end favourites from Philip Sherburne’s monthly column
“In dance and electronic music, DJ sets play a role that has no real analog in other genres: an invisible layer stretched across the face of the music, an alternate dimension where disparate tracks are cobbled together into a form that may transcend the individual parts. The best DJs play a curatorial and even a critical role, making sense of the surfeit of new music available and forging connections between novel sounds and antecedents buried deep in the canon.
Thanks to the way that DJ culture has spread online, you could go an entire year listening only to mixes and you might still come away with a truer understanding of current dance music than someone who had just listened to the year’s biggest albums. DJ culture represents the vanguard of electronic and dance music. And this year, the most exceptional sets were those in which old hierarchies continued to break down and an anything-goes spirit took on fresh urgency.”
Revisit Courtesy’s RA Mix and Laurel Halo’s Discwoman mix on Pitchfork