[Review] NAP DNB - Best of 2015

Who is Courtney Tanasovich?
Dec 28, 2015 Courtney Tanasovich

[Review] NAP DNB - Best of 2015

Seasons Greetings, Family!! While it may not LOOK like Christmas outside here in Napghanistan, I hope you are all filled with happiness and joyous memories of this Holiday time. Adventures in NAP DNB Family road trip continued on Saturday, where Antik One put on a nice little set of some dark but groovy tunes that had a nice dance floor moving all night at Skeletunes for Mayhem! Gizzmo and Angie joined us to sip on delicious draft root beer and boogie with the Ft. Wayne heads. The NAP DNB team has also been hard at work over the past week to deliver our thoughts on our favorite mixes of the year. This was so way harder than I expected, and because of such, you're getting a couple more from me ;-) This project was a really great way to reflect on just how much we've heard in the past year. Juke was a strong presence throughout. We heard from a couple folks more than once over the year and each time they presented a NEW side to their musical tastes. And this is totally biased, but the amount of variation within this ONE genre always astounds me. And all of it matters. It all serves to add to the history of this music that bridges oceans, race and language. So without any further delay, lets see who really stuck out to the All-Stars and Jungle Birds in 2015!

Num3r1k's pick: Jin-XS was my favorite from this year. Nate is a multi-genre monster and I'm glad he took the time to pick through his diverse selection of liquid, jump-up, and some heavier tunes and seamlessly mashed them up with hip hop, pop, and other unexpected styles. A mix from him is always a treat because I never know what he's going to pull out of his hat, but I know I'm going to enjoy it.

Kayleigh Graul's pick: Maybe it's low down baby making dnb, or maybe it's his perfectly groomed mustache, but my pick for top mix of the year is #058 from Manic. He was so good to us this year, with 2 mixes AND a live performance! What you've heard is true, I HAVE been #teamMANIC for a while now, almost a year later and I still play his first napcast (#014) at least once a week. Really excited to see the Indymojo show on Wednesday this week when Manic throws down with the legendary DJ Dara and my sexy-ass husband, Num3r1k! Hope to see you out on the dance floor with all the other Naptown junglists at Hi-Fi New Years Eve Eve!

Gizzmo's pick: Favoritest NAPCast for the 15th of the 2000s, Number 50. Señor Carnie. Super high energy selection with enough ups and downs to keep you on your toes. Maintains said energy for the entire mix. I love a relentless dnb mix.

Antik One's Pick: Sinistarr was one of my favorite Tuesday nights of the year. I was so stoked he let us use the live recording for a NAPCast. His set goes to show just because it isn't loud and ragey doesn't mean it isn't a banger.... and that shit was just fun as hell. Can't wait to have him back.

Yvonne Noland's Pick: My favorite Napcast of the year goes to my awesome husband, Hollow Point. I've always enjoyed the variety that comes with his sets. It can be fast and angry but then give him 10 minutes and he'll play something completely different. I never get bored listening to him play.

Hollow Point's Pick: Roots Iric aka Kwenga has been a big part of NAP DNB's success and there's no doubt why: this guy knows his stuff. Precise mixing, a dangerous track list and super-clean transitions put this mix over the top. Easily one of my favorites of the year. Last but not least, we've reached my pick. Like I said, this was way harder than I thought it would be. I had a couple mixes in mind that I was looking forward to revisiting before moving forward with a final choice. But as I read through the blogs and played each mix, I found myself inspired by ones I had over looked. Ones that I was sure would illicit the same feelings as when I first listened didn't always hit the mark. So I came up with about 10 that I really couldn't discount enough to completely rule them out. I won't bore you with the details, but in no particular order:

  • Anita Vokill - Such a killer jungle session! Love love love the energy of unfettered drum edits.
  • Kaiten - This mix is so fun and gives you more bounce for the ounce.
  • Breakspeare - Favorite mix featuring heavy jazz infusion. Loved his careful attention to drum work.
  • Magenta - This is my love letter to dnb. We are crossing all our fingers she makes it back to Indy to hang out soon ;-)
  • Jin-XS - Dynamic master of mixing. Dance-ability scale: 10.
  • Roots Iric - Classic soundclash ragga sound.
  • Gizzmo - This mix was on heavy rotation for MONTHSSSSS. Still in love with the classic warehouse vibe.
  • DJ Hizer - Unexpected with a rich and complex tune selection.

But then there were THESE TWO. THESE TWO that I couldn't get enough of and was deeply bummed when they were over. So while these are technically the last two of that group above to round out the 10 I promised, they're both #1 in my heart this year! *drum roll please* Courtney's Top Pick of 2015...... NuM3R1K - Simply put, it's inspired. A total departure from the sexy liquid and jazzy jump-up we typically hear out of him at shows. I had honestly forgotten this had happened and IMMEDIATELY remembered being wildly impressed when we first heard it. All over again, still am. Seriously, this one is gold. This mix goes deep and I think really reflects NuM3R1K's personality. Thoughtful, measured and intentionally put together. The result is a fantastic piece that rolls and breaks, jumps up and gets dark, and generally grooves hard.

And..... with his SECOND appearance on the list.... Jin-XS - What can I say about Nate that hasn't already said a billion times? You're not dealing with just any "crate digger" and certainly not just any DJ. For me, there's not anything musically that Nate could do that I wouldn't be a fan of. This mix was the first of the year and I remember thinking it would be hard to beat. Like MuM3R1K said in is pick, you never know WHAT you're going to get, but you KNOW it's going to be great! Without fail it stole my attention for a long long time. Very few get my Jungle loving heart the way Jin-XS does and that Dance-ability scale I mentioned? Yeah, he's a pro at knowing how to get a dance floor working. I especially love it when he tells me he's "not a Junglist" and then he plays like this and I get to call him a liar. So there you have it folks. 16 (See what we did there?) very highly rated recommendations for mixes heard EXCLUSIVELY on NAP DNB.

Obviously this list is by no means exhaustive, and we'd LOVE to know which mixes are still in your Soundcloud rotation! As we start looking into our 2016 calendar for The Mel and The Bassment, we may be posting some surveys for feedback on the sort of acts you'd come out to see in Indy, so keep your eyes peeled for more on that! There will also be some other aesthetic changes coming to the site and our logo, and you know what THAT means.......NEW STICKERS!!! Be on the look-out for those too! All of us here at NAP DNB hope that everyone out there has a tremendous New Years celebration and stays safe! If you want to avoid the amateurs in Indy, my suggestion is to just come to Dara on the 30th for that Eve Eve business and stay warm and cozy at home for the 31st ;-) We'll be back at The Mel on 1/12, so hopefully we'll see your smiling faces at something soon!!