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2020 was the absolute worst. All of your favorite fests and friends got locked down and somehow— you survived.

Despite all our highest hopes for 2021, it’s already be a shit show and we’ve only begun. This is the cure, this is that energy we’ve been craving… no… lusting for, for the past 12 months.

Between the songs on this playlist, you’ll dance to the vibe of 2021 we’re duly owed (after such a wack-ass 2020), crossing upbeat bops with velvety vocal arrangements that straight-up pop on some of the hottest beat drops you’ll hear all year.

Inspired - Julian Cross

Energy is bound by the beat, and this track by Julian Cross kicks-off with a bumping bass that never lets you down. This song is without a doubt the most likely to crossover from the Dance charts to, dare I say it— your favorite Top 40 FM channel by this summer. The vocals on this beauty give me Adam Levine from Maroon 5 feels, with just the right amount of gritty pop to pull it off. You’ll love the chorus, and it’s likely why you’ll keep it on repeat for at least a day or two. The Rap break about half way through, absolutely takes the cake. Not only does it make this Dance song likable by listeners who tend to stick to Hip-Hop, it succeeds in adding a tasteful splash of swag to solidify its cross-over to the main charts.

Julian Cross is new to the scene and though this he’s still an up-and-comer, it’s clear that 2021 will be his breakout year if he keeps this vibe up. At the one of the day, this song has just the right of positive energy that we all need these days. If you’re not bopping after 10 seconds in, you’ll be singing along by the end— and that’s perfect.

Walk On Water - Kokiri

Right from the jump, you know this one is going to tug on the heart strings a little more than you expected. The lyrics are basically crying out for your love. All of this happens in a space that one would describe as the “the sonic silver lining near the end of the world.”

If I can walk on water, maybe I’ll be closer to you.

It’s about regret, it’s about resilience, it’s about realizing that the end has come but it’s not final until one moves on, for themselves. That mix of melancholy vocals over upbeat synths and a super smooth bass-line is why this song absolutely smacks; leaving you somewhere between reliving the club days of yesteryear, and the verge of tears.

A Love That’s Hard To Find (Dub Mix) - Chicane

One word… beautiful. Chicane doesn’t disappoint with this flawless House track. It’s got everything you love about Electronica in terms of the spaceship ambiance but, keeps it contemporary with passionate vocals that bring it back to Earth it with pure emotion— emoting that 2021 energy at chill frequency to put you at ease as you zen-out.

It sounds like a hopeful future is in sights and there’s no rush (or stress) to chase it but rather, let yourself have it. There are lyrics but, they don’t matter. It’s about riding that hero of a high-vibe and galactic arpeggiator, that’s the bit we obscure listeners appreciate most.

One Last Time - THAT KIND

This song is the perfect exhibit of that 2021 energy. THAT KIND makes sure this song stands out by using the lead vocal percussively to the point that the sounds of the “t” subs organically as a high-hat before the beat picks up.

To tell you I need you

You’d expect an arpeggiator in Dance track like this however, the arpeggiation here is real. Not only does it serve as the melodic thread between verse and chorus, it’s the main sound carrying that energetic vibe that you’re loving so much. And when the beat drops, it brings it all together. Trust me, you’ll want to give it a replay (or five) as the bomb drops and it ends. It’s the track that gets you in the zone, whenever you need it.

Wait For Hell - GOLDHOUSE, Page

This song is the cute side of that 2021 energy, from the lyrics to the bounce cadence in which they are sung… so cute, but totally hot. It starts out with a nostalgic 90’s House high-hat and perky vocals that are delivered with a nonchalant confidence.

You’ll live in the rest between her crisp “Kay.” and the beat drop, amping you up to her level of self awareness as you groove out to the next verse. The VOX is delightful, one can never hate on using the human voice in surprising ways to keep listeners like us interested. Sometimes I even get MJ vibes from the arrangement, as it brings you back around to groove again when you’re ready for another go and mixes it up every time around.

I think it's kinda funny how you drunk and hit me up...

Whether you’re stuck at home on yet another Zoom call, driving passengers in your car, or hitting that afternoon workout you promised yourself you’d commit to this year… “Wait For Hell” is that hot one that’ll turn it into a party.

If you come to find yourself longing for the last time you were out dancing, pre-COVID… close your eyes, turn this playlist all the way up, and envision a better place.

The energy of 2021 is yours.

Written by Terrance Nixon, who you can find on Teransu.com or on Instagram.

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