Words by: Felicity Martin

The 10 Best Acid House Tracks, according to Dusky

"The original is a such a stone cold classic that this version often gets overlooked but it’s a real gem..."

Ever since breaking through during the UK house renaissance with ‘Flo Jam’ in 2011, London production duo Nick Harriman and Alfie Granger-Howell aka Dusky have been on a sharp upwards trajectory. Eight years on, they’re still going strong, and earlier this year put out their ‘Imagine What‘ EP via their own 17 Steps label, an imprint that’s become a cornerstone for house and techno since its inception in 2014.

Ahead of their appearance at Bugged Out at XOYO in January – where they’re going to be playing a special acid house set in the Green Room – the pair dust off their favourite acid house belters of all time.

1. Marshall Jefferson – ‘Open Our Eyes (Spiritual Mix)’

“Such a satisfying bassline on this one from one of the godfathers of house music. This track chugs along rising and falling into and out of emotive moments built around its beautiful chords and sparingly arranged vocals.”

2. Tyree – ‘Acid Over’

“Tyree Cooper was one of the most prolific producers from the late ’80s and early ’90s Chicago scene and this is an example of some of his best work. Melodic, grooving and driving. Check out his Pet Shop Boys remix as well, pure vibes.”

3. Dreamatic – ‘Audio Trip’

“Classy and beautifully-produced Italian house music that still sounds great on a big system today. This one is a prime example of a 909 and 101 providing rock solid rhythmical foundations, an instrument combination upon which countless classic house and techno tracks have been built.”

4. A Guy Called Gerald – ‘Voodoo Ray (Paradise Ballroom Mix)’

“The original is a such a stone cold classic that this version often gets overlooked but it’s a real gem. A slightly deeper and piano-led Frankie Knuckles remix that always gets the dancefloor bubbling.”

5. Derrick May – ‘The Dance’

“This track was a precursor to where acid house would go after it came to the UK and morphed into a more rave-oriented sound. Undoubtedly influential on one of Britian’s greatest electronic duos in LFO and the blueprint for the much-loved Sheffield bleep sound.”

6. Annette – ‘Dream 17’

“Mick Pickering and A Guy Called Gerald combine forces to produce this bubbly acid classic. Elevated to anthem status by the otherworldly vocals from Annette Dos Reis.”

7. Orbital – ‘Chime’

“One of our personal top ten tracks of all time, regardless of its acid house categorisation. A seminal track that is synonymous with UK acid house and rave culture.”

8. Fallout – ‘The Morning After (Sunrise Mix)’

“Another awesome bassline. So nice it’s been used thrice. Probably inspired by the Paradise Garage classic Jago – ‘I’m Going To Go’, and then later used again on D-Tek – ‘Drop The Rock’. All three tracks have their own charm but Fallout nailed the balance of melody, groove and energy perfectly.”

9. Wood Allen – ‘Airport ’89 (Club Mix)’

“This track acts like a time machine that takes you back to experience the musical optimism of the era. Despite all the social and political challenges of the time, the song is able to push it aside and say ‘fuck all this, let’s dance.'”

10. Debbie Malone – ‘Rescue Me’

“One of the big vocal tracks from the acid house scene that has really stood the test of time. Worth checking out all the different mixes of this track, of which there are about four or five. They all bring something different and valuable to the table which doesn’t happen with packages of alternate mixes very often.”

Listen to the title cut from Dusky’s ‘Imagine What’ EP:

Dusky play an acid house set at Rise For Love x Bugged Out! at XOYO on January 10 – find tickets here.

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