M.I.A – Bad Girls

The dawn of 2012 was all about the return of the ever wonderful M.I.A. Her most instantly accessible song to date, ’Bad Girls’ had it all. Brilliant, bombastic pop chorus lines that punctuate the overall middle-eastern inspired, mid-tempo r’n’b vibe. And then there was that video. Flawless.
- Rich Thane

Doldrums – Jump Up

Montreal noise-merchant Doldrums’ ‘Jump Up’ first appeared as a b-side to ‘Egypt’ back in May. A baffling tout de force of relentless acid drenched beats and psychedelic wails. ‘Jump Up’ is the sound of a riot taking place on the dancefloor… The kind of thing Kasabian have spent the past 10 years trying oh so desperately to make.
- Rich Thane

San Zhi – Ice Light

Bournemouth via Egypt boy-girl duo San Zhi blew us away with their debut EP Ice Light, the title track from which has earned its place our list through its dreamy, reverb drenched pop, wonderfully understated eighties nods and siren like vocal harmonies.
- Lauren Down

Luke Abbott – Modern Driveway

With its bulbous, gloriously analogue melody – all rough around the edges and unassuming – Abbott once again captured pure melancholy in aural form. ‘Modern Driveway’ is the sound of early morning, no-sleep heartache set against a rolling, distinctly English panorama.
- Josh Hall

Chvrches – The Mother We Share

A brilliant mix of bedroom producer electronics and the kind of fizzy melodies you’d expect to hear on the Disney channel, these hotly tipped Glaswegians defined the term ‘indie pop hit’ in 2012. About as addictive as a can of Irn Bru dropped in a deep-fat fryer.
- Luke Morgan Britton