Robbie Williams? Seriously?? I was deep into dance music in 97 so... 1. Octave One – The Living Key (To Images From Above) I love Detroit techno. It was probably at the height of it’s popularity 95 to 97. Clubs that played it were packed and there were loads of mixes, compilations, albums, EPs and singles released in 97. Having exorcised all the mixes, compilations, EPs and singles for this poll there’s still a handful of great albums and this is the best. 2. Faze Action – Plans & Designs The UK deep house disco revival was in full swing in 97. In The Trees, with it’s soaring strings and cello, was the big hit, but the whole album is great from start to finish. He’s still going 20 years later and I’ve come to terms with the fact he’ll never do anything this good again. 3. Gas – Zauberberg Wolfgang Voigt is one of those prolific German techno types who’s released a mountain of music under various names – 38 different solo aliases and in 49 different groups according to Discogs. Who knows what he had planned when he went in the studio for this – the first Gas album was rooted firmly in Chain Reaction style dub techno, but here he turned out an ambient drone neo-classical dub techno masterpiece. Amazing. 4. K Hand – The Art of Music Kelli Hand released three albums in 97, but this is by far her best. Detroit techno built on bouncing electro beats rather than pounding four-to-the floor. I hadn’t listened to for years before thinking what to put in this poll, but I’ve been playing it loads this last week and it sounds better now than it did 20 years ago. 5. Photek – Modus Operandi DnB in 97 seemed to be dominated by either techstep or jazz’n’bass. Techstep I never took to – it was being played everywhere and people were mad for it – I couldn’t ask about DnB in a record shop without someone trying to sell me that No U-Turn Torque comp - but I found listening to it a chore. Jazzy DnB I like up to a point, but too often the producer will cross that line and I’ll find myself listening to some lightweight jazz funk tune with fast drums and that’s not what I signed up for. Photek did his own thing and made by far my favourite DnB album of the year. 6. Future Homosapians – Moonrock Another UK deep house disco album, this one a side project of DnB types London Elektricity. Everything they put out on their short-lived Galactic Disco label was excellent. Ignore the terrible cover, it’s great. 7. Carl Craig – More Songs About Food & Revolutionary Art A gorgeous Detroit techno album aimed more at the sofa than the dancefloor. It’s got Dominas on it, which is probably my favourite thing he did. 8. Two Lone Swordsmen – Stockwell Steppas Weatherall and Tenniswood doing their thing. A bit of house, some weird shit, some DnB type stuff thrown in. Listening to it again the other day I could almost smell the skunk that inevitably accompanied this album in 97. 9. Glenn Underground – The Jerusalem EPs Blissed out, sometimes jazzy, deep house from Chicago with enough groove to make you shake ya booty. 10. Maas – Latitude Melodic Scottish techno/electro on Soma produced by Ewan Pearson, who went on to make a name for himself as a remixer in the 00s. It might sound a bit dated now, but it’s a lovely, solid album and I played it so much in 97 it’d be wrong not to have it on my list.