10 Best Instrumental Beats

Trying to compile a list of the ten best instrumental beats is a highly disputable debate. There are the Eighties inspired electro beats, street hip-hop beats and dance club anthems. That said, try this list and see how many arguments you get into with your friends.

  1. “Chase” – Giorgio Moroder’s theme song from the movie “Midnight Express.” Almost overlooked this one, but thanks to the good old shuffle mood it happened to show up. The initially repetitive synthesizer builds up until it gives way to a somewhat cheesy chorus that makes up for it during the serious break of the song. It used to be a staple of the late night sports news casts when they would show the running backs in slow motion, and it would have you trying to do that in the house until you broke your mom's lamp and kicked you outside.  
  2. “Planet Rock” – The classic Afrika Bambatta 80’s track that practically ushered in the B-Boy era. This break beat track has been sampled over and over. Even if you've never heard it, you've heard it. You just might not know it since it's been used so much. This is the pop locking, break dancing track that had kids “up rocking” and “wind milling” on large pieces of cardboard in parking lots and schoolyards.
  3. “Paid in Full” – One of the most popular renditions of one of the most famous break beats ever put on wax. There have been several others, most notably PM Dawn’s “Set Adrift on Memory Bliss,” if only because the tempo is a bit slower and the track lends itself to both the slow drawl of a rapper or the melodic tune of an R&B singer. 
  4. “Moment’s in Love”  – Art of Noise’s 80’s classic was the precursor to the chill out club movement. This might be the ultimate down tempo beat that has been sampled and replayed and remixed many times.
  5. “Numbers” – Kraftwerk’s super robotic, electric, kinetic, mind-numbing groove. It might be one of the first “Trance” tracks. Yeah, it's got some vocal in it, but the vocal is used electronically as part of the instrumental. Plus, there are sections of the song that contain the same breakbeat used in “Planet Rock.” 
  6. “Tour De France”  – Kraftwerk’s mega beat track that blew up the 80’s was a tour de force that is often still sampled.
  7. “Sandstorm” – Darude’s megahit of 2000 that stills fills arenas and ballparks between breaks. It's frenetic beat is catchy the first time you hear it, but after the 100th time, it feels real familiar. This one will never go away.
  8. “Expander” – Sasha’s club trance classic anthem is inescapable in any huge global arena. Anyone who knows anything about dance music is familiar with Sasha and should know this epic wave rider well.
  9. Timbaland vs. The world – It’s impossible to limit Timbo’s tracks down to one. It just is. He even released his entire album “Shockwave” as an instrumental. It's a push for him to make the list because his songs are so radio friendly but when you actually do hear the tracks without the vocals, you are almost guaranteed to like them better.  
  10. “Confusion” – Better know as the “Blade Rave” from the blood drenched opening of that movie. Yeah, it's a hype, glam-trance track with minimal vocals overpowered by that relentless beat. But, it’s banging.
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