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Electronic Dance Music (EDM) is a broad term that encompasses many different genres and sub-genres. Some of the main genres of EDM include:

  • HOUSE: characterized by a 4/4 beat and a focus on repetitive, hypnotic rhythms. It originated in Chicago in the 1980s and has since evolved into various sub-genres such as deep house and tech house.
    • Typically features a 4/4 beat, with a tempo range of around 120-130 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the downbeat and the hi-hat playing on the offbeats. House music often incorporates elements of funk, soul, and disco, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by a repetitive, hypnotic rhythm, with a focus on the bassline and the use of chord progressions and melodies.

 

  • TECHNO: originated in Detroit in the 1980s and is characterized by a heavy use of technology and electronic instruments. It has a focus on repetitive, mechanical beats and often features a minimalist aesthetic.
    • Typically features a 4/4 beat, with a tempo range of around 120-150 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the downbeat and the hi-hat playing on the offbeats. Techno music often incorporates elements of acid house, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by a repetitive, mechanical beat, with a focus on the use of basslines and the use of chord progressions and melodies.

 

  • TRANCE: characterized by a fast tempo, and repetitive beats and melodies. Trance music often has a euphoric or uplifting feeling and is designed to create a sense of heightened energy on the dance floor.
    • Typically features a 4/4 beat, with a tempo range of around 130-150 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the downbeat and the hi-hat playing on the offbeats. Trance music often incorporates elements of progressive house, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by a fast tempo, and repetitive beats and melodies. Trance music often includes a breakdown section which is a slower tempo section to build energy, and then a climax with a faster tempo.

 

  • DRUM AND BASS: characterized by fast-paced, broken beats, and heavy basslines. It originated in the UK in the early 1990s and has since evolved into various sub-genres such as jungle and neurofunk.
    • Typically features a broken beat, with a tempo range of around 160-180 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the offbeats. Drum and bass music often incorporates elements of jungle and breakbeat, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by fast-paced, broken beats, and heavy basslines.

 

  • DUBSTEP: characterized by a focus on bass-heavy beats and often incorporates elements of dub and reggae music. It originated in the UK in the early 2000s.
    • Typically features a tempo range of around 140-160 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the offbeats. Dubstep music often incorporates elements of dub and reggae, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by a focus on bass-heavy beats and often incorporates elements of dub and reggae music, with the use of sub-bass and basslines that are heavily processed.

 

  • ELECTRO HOUSE: characterized by a blend of house and electro music, it features a strong focus on basslines and often incorporates elements of pop and hip-hop.
    • Typically features a 4/4 beat, with a tempo range of around 120-130 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the downbeat and the hi-hat playing on the offbeats. Electro house music often incorporates elements of house, electro and pop music, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by a strong focus on basslines and often incorporates elements of pop and hip-hop.

 

  • FUTURE BASS: characterized by a blend of bass music, pop and hip hop, which is different from dubstep, it often features melodic, synth-heavy soundscapes.
    • Typically features a tempo range of around 130-160 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the downbeat and the hi-hat playing on the offbeats. Future Bass music often incorporates elements of bass music, pop and hip hop, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by melodic, synth-heavy soundscapes, often with a dreamy or ethereal feel, and a heavy use of vocal chops and pitch-shifted samples.

 

  • BASS HOUSE: characterized by a blend of house and bass music, it often features heavy use of basslines, and aggressive beats.
    • Typically features a 4/4 beat, with a tempo range of around 126-130 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the downbeat and the hi-hat playing on the offbeats. Bass House music often incorporates elements of house and bass music, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by heavy use of basslines, and aggressive beats, often with a focus on the use of chord progressions and melodies.

 

  • HARDSTYLE: characterized by heavy use of distorted kick drums, and aggressive synthesizers, it often features a fast tempo and energetic feel.
    • Typically features a 4/4 beat, with a tempo range of around 150-160 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the downbeat and the hi-hat playing on the offbeats. Hardstyle music often incorporates elements of hardcore and techno, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by heavy use of distorted kick drums, and aggressive synthesizers, it often features a fast tempo and energetic feel.

 

  • MOOMBAHTON: characterized by a blend of house and reggaeton, it often features a slower tempo and incorporates elements of Latin music.
    • Typically features a tempo range of around 108-116 BPM. The drums are usually made up of a kick, snare, and hi-hat, with the kick and snare playing on the downbeat and the hi-hat playing on the offbeats. Moombahton music often incorporates elements of house and reggaeton, with the use of synthesizers, drum machines, and samples. The sound is characterized by a slower tempo and incorporates elements of Latin music, often with a focus on the use of percussive elements and syncopated rhythms.

This is not a comprehensive list, and there are many other sub-genres and variations within EDM. Additionally, these definitions are not hard and fast, and new subgenres are constantly emerging and evolving.

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