5 Essential Kyle Watson Tracks
Apr 25, 2023
4 min read
Kyle Watson grew up in a musical family with lofty aspirations and abundant talent. While the Johannesburg-born South African DJ and producer has been making waves with his hypnotic basslines and infectious hooks for well over a decade, it was his 2018 debut album, Into The Morning, that catapulted his talent to the international stage. Since then, Watson has released a flurry of certified floor-fillers and taken his extensive catalog on the road garnering global clout within the house music scene.
His releases run deep and reside on a number of high-profile labels, including Dirtybird, Higher Ground, Ultra, and Spinnin’ Deep. Not only is Watson a highly talented musical threat, but he also has a background in motion graphic design, which elevates the captivating nature of his live show every time he steps on stage.
Most recently, Watson packed out Coachella’s legendary Yuma Tent to capacity for an electric performance that had been in the works since the festival’s 2020 iteration faced a pandemic cancelation. With a 2023 season littered with milestones, we decided to look back at his catalog to showcase five essential tunes that all house music fans should have in rotation.
1. Kyle Watson, MAY BBY - Magic Carpet
Tech house with a healthy dose of boisterous attitude; an undeniable gritty groove permeates the accessible vocals of “Magic Carpet.” Within the track’s opening cords, MAY BBY’s enchanting vocals echo the house war cry, “Feel the bass in my heart, like,” and within seconds, the crawling bassline grabs hold and never lets go. With over twelve million streams on Spotify, it’s safe to say “Magic Carpet” is essential for all dance music lovers who enjoy the vibes of dark-packed clubs.
2. Kyle Watson - Kick Drums
Not only is “Kick Drums” the debut release on Watson’s newly minted label—No Context—its driving bassline and simple vocal hook have catapulted the track into Beatport’s bass house top 10. The song embodies the new label’s vision that there is beauty in the seemingly disparate elements of music. Alone a simple kick drum is without weight, but combine it with the right ingredients, and magic is born. That coalescence is both “Kick Drums” and No Context Records.
3. Kyle Watson, Apple Gule - I Got You
Apple Gule’s haunting vocals wrap this track in pure silk. Progressive chords and a bouncing bassline elevate this accessible house track. It’s easy to see why the track is so irresistible and perfect for every listening occasion. Although it may be a divergence from Watson’s usual club-leaning productions, it is a testament to Watson’s diverse and endless talent as a producer.
4. Kyle Watson - The Reason
With a stuttering hook, a driving bassline, and a splash of playfulness— “The Reason,” is a certifiable banger ideally suited for the world of large-scale, big room tech house. Released in the fall of 2022 on Sink or Swim Records, the track instantly garnered support from the likes of Fisher and Chris Lake. Cracking the top 40 on Beatport’s main chart, this track’s discoverability has been immense since day one. If you’ve heard “The Reason,” it has been stuck in your head, and if you haven’t, you’re welcome.
5. Kyle Watson - Moments
Simply put, this song is beautiful. It may not be reminiscent of Watson’s current streak of tech house anthems, but that doesn’t mean it’s not essential. Warm, progressive, and effortlessly hopeful, “Moments” transports listeners away from their daily grind with ballad-leaning piano keys and low-end progressive scuzz. Although it has amassed hundreds of thousands of streams across various platforms, it truly deserves more. Do yourself a favor and listen to “Moments,” it will be a high point of your day, we promise.