Courtesy of the artist
Matthew Dekay closes a party.
Matthew Dekay closes a party. Courtesy of the artist
Of all of the building blocks that make up a house track — builds, drops and bridges, to name a few — "the groove" is the most vital to any dance floor destroyer. It's built in a 4/4 time signature and commonly made with the following elements: a bass kick on every measure, a 16th closed high-hat pattern, an open high hat on every offbeat, and a clap or snare on the second and fourth beats of every measure. Now, what happens between these basic parameters is what can make or break a groove. For example, shifting the snare drum forward a microsecond can give a beat drive that it hadn't had before, or placing emphasis on the first bass kick instead of the fourth can give a song the extra little rhythmic push it needs.
Musicians have been innovating on the four-to-floor pattern since swing music got people moving. Though groove concoction is a science that rewards precision, there isn't a set formula for making dance-floor magic. Here are five songs that find a way to a sort of magical dance-music alchemy, with deadly grooves that kill every time.
The 5 Deadliest Grooves of 2011