20 Best EDM and Electronic Albums of 2016

Flume, Kygo, Aphex Twin and more

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Equiknoxx, 'Bird Sound Power'

17. Equiknoxx, 'Bird Sound Power'

Jamaica's Equiknoxx turn more than 30 years of dancehall music upside down while losing very little of its visceral, grinding appeal. The production crew plumb traditional low-end and wind-ready rhythms with a decidedly post-modern ear for broken-sounding samples and errant noises (cawing birds, slurping turntable fuzz, synthwave pillows). It's dancehall painted by Picasso — the rhythms are familiar, but the snares splat ("Clunk") or splut like wet cardboard ("I Really Want to Write on Her Purple Wall"); melody lines are more like marimba patterns (Porridge Should Be Brown Not Green") or clanking cans ("Clink"). Part the Bug, part J Dilla, part Flying Lotus, part King Tubby, Bird Sound Power is a dark, demented journey that still grooves from top to bottom. C.W.

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