In our ever-winding search for the best new music, we sent out nominees to the furthest reaches of our little corner of the electronic music journalism world and collected votes for the first-ever installation of The Hawkies. Brought to you by the people you trust most to bring you the new music, we have compiled some of our favorite music from this year to see what was found to be the best of 2021.
And before we start, let’s give a special thank you to all of our friends at FUXWITHIT, Heard It Here First, EDM Identity, MP3 Mag, ThisSongSlaps, The Untz, ThisSongIsSick, Modern Neon, Riverbeats, MoonLvnding, and GRLGANG for participating in the judging. Without the dedication of these music lovers, we wouldn’t have the wonderful community we do today.
Without further ado, The 2021 Hawkies go to…
Best Up and Coming Artist of 2021
The Official Nominees for Best Up and Coming Artist are:
A Hundred Drums
She has had a phenomenal year, booking large spots at events such as G Jones’ New Year event, Buku 2022, and even the next Electric Forest. Seeing such a deserving figure in our community finally skyrocket has us feeling like we ourselves are on our way to Cloud 9.
Image courtesy of blazejzalewski
Best Sound Design
The Nominees for Best Sound Design are:
Of The Trees
With the release of The Tale of Elegos this year, we have found this artist makes the most subtle statements and the boldest remarks with the complex sound design he continues to develop as he releases more music.
Image courtesy of Tessa Paisan
The Nominees for Best Album are:
Nurture by Porter Robinson
SOLUS by CharlestheFirst
Afterlife by Dillard
Phantasmagoria by Mr. Bill
Pretty, Dark, Loud by Mersiv
CharlestheFirst Forever. Well deserved and bittersweet to award this here. What more could we do to say farewell but throw this album on again.
The Nominees for Best Single of the Year are:
“Supersonic” by Skrillex
“Windhorse” by Of The Trees
“Do It To It” by Acraze
“Phases” by redrum
“Dangerous Sound” by EPROM
Here to prove his spot at the top is deserved, we have another award for Of The Trees and the perfection that was the single he released. Not that he needs to prove it, since it’s just common knowledge at this point.
The Nominees for Best Mix of the year are:
Night Drive 2 – Skeler
Halloween X – RL Grime
Gourmet Shit Vol II – smith
Sunday Bass Vol 5 – Super Future
Winning over Night Drive 2 by only one single point, its no surprise that RL Grime really brought it for the mix that he played live for the first time in ten years.
The Nominees for Best Remix of the Year are:
“Whole Lotta Money” by BIA (Detox Unit Remix)
“Breathe” by Pink Floyd (Common Creation Remix)
“Night goggles” by Mindchatter (Rome In Silver Remix)
“Cool Girl” by Tove Lo (Nora En Pure Remix)
“Overthinker” by INZO (CloZee Remix )
This artist took a song that we’ve already had on repeat for the past three years and made a new version so good we had to create a playlist with only this song and the original so we can simply press play and replay all day.
Best Live Stream
The Nominees for Best Live Stream of 2021 are:
GRiZ’s “Rainbow Brain”
Gravitas Recording’s ” Emergence“
Brownies & Lemonade “Open Aux”
Porter Robinson’s “Secret Sky“
It was so entertaining and cute watching DJs create their at-home setups, individualize their stage in a way they hadn’t got the chance to. But all of these humble sets were blown out of the water when Griz blessed us with this live stream.
Now for some… genre royalty.
Best Trap Release
The Nominees for Best Trap Release are:
“Nightrealm” by ISOxo
“Inferno” by Juelz
“Shimmer” by Cozway & Rossy
“FTSU” by Wreckno, jordnmoody, uujuu
“Here With Me” by Peekaboo
Its no wonder we have this song as the winner, when we have a triple powerhouse hanging around to bring the beat.
Best House Release
The Nominees for Best House Release are:
“Do It To It” by ACRAZE
“Wait A Minute” by Biscuits
“Human” by John Summit
“Sun Came Up” by John Summit & Sophie Tucker
This song took the scene by storm, inspiring even Barely Alive to create because of its existence. It is an irresistible beat that wiggles its way deep into your every muscle, you simply can’t help but dance.
Best Drum and Bass Release
The Nominees for Best Drum and Bass Release are:
“Aura” by Kumarion
“Breathe” by blanke
“Lidocaine” by Integrate
“Let Me Live” by Saka (Ft Amethyst)
“Mystery” by blanke
The first-ever Drum and Bass release from this pair and it wins our DnB track of the year… absolutely unstoppable these two are.
Best Dubstep Release
The Nominees for Best Dubstep Release are:
“The Drill” by Liquid Stranger
“Burn Up The Floor” by Jantsen & GRiZ
“Shadow People” by Eptic
“Dangerous Sound” by EPROM
Trust me when I say that this result… caused some fights. Fists were flying over slack, Electric Hawk HQ was simply a mess. But it’s undeniable that this award is well deserved here.
Best Techno Release
The Nominees for Best Techno Release are:
“For the Ride” by Lupa
“Darkness” (Extended mix) by Lupa
“Beware” by HELLBOUND!
“The Age of Love” by Age of Love (Charlotte de Witte & Enrico Remix )
“Signal” by Kill Script
This track won by a mile. over half the votes submitted were for this track. This became the most assured winner of the entire awards.
And that’s a wrap! We would love to hear what you think. Who or what should’ve made it into The 2021 Hawkies nominees that you didn’t see? Would you have chosen what we did?
Oh, we almost forgot – Happy New Year! This past year has been filled with some… turbulence, but the music that is the reason we all do this continues to chug along happily down the road. We are looking ahead to a new year of music in 2022 that will hopefully knock our socks off as much as the tunes this year did.
And if you’re looking for new music, keep up with our weekly Spotify Playlist, Fresh Hunts, or follow us on Twitch. Whether it’s the newest drops from Of The Trees, all your other favorite artists, some old school, or underground—we just want you to hear it.