In the last decade the evolution of electronic dance music has come into its own. What once was a collection of recordings on analogue tape quickly evolving into elaborate loops, has now blossomed into a highly individual and highly stylised audio art form. From the origins of ‘light techno’ and ‘house’ music on early 1980’s New York dance floors, to the worldwide mainstream breakthrough of such styles as house, trance and dubstep, electronic music has truly reshaped the popular music landscape. The birth of new dance styles and the growth of modern DJ’s careers have sparked an explosion in interest in electronic dance music from around the world. For artists and retailers alike the opportunity presented by the global growth of electronic dance culture offers immense commercial potential.
Technically speaking, the evolution of electronic music has taken place over the last few decades at a tremendous pace. Technological advances such as laptop sync recording and Pro DJ equipment have increased the possibilities and impacts of recorded music. Furthermore, technological improvements in sound reproduction and playback systems, hardware options and software options for editing and mixing have also dramatically expanded the possibilities available to producers and DJs. As a result the range and quality of electronic music have become widely accessible and affordable to an ever increasing number of people. It has also created a whole new breed of ‘DJs’ (or Music producers and DJs).
The evolution of electronic music is a process which can be described as the collision of various artistic sensibilities, musical ideas, techniques, genres, approaches and styles. A key feature of the evolution of electronic music is the proliferation of new forms of electronic music. This is most evident in the birth and growth of ‘progressive house’ and ‘Trance music’. Such genres, though relatively simple in structure, offer something unique and distinctive to the music world.
The birth of electronic music such as’Trance music is perhaps best illustrated by the case of rave. Though the term was originally applied to describe an American dance music, it grew into worldwide recognition with the spread of rave parties. rave was, in fact, the first major break from traditional dance styles. It combined innovative musical choreography and ’boutique music’ into a new form of electronic dance, which took rave to new levels of international popularity.
Another important example is techno dance. It too has had its fair share of breakthroughs and innovations. Though it may not have the same longevity as rave, it too began as an American take on ‘house music’. techno dance combines the best elements of traditional club music and the hi fi ambience of rave. While many believe the future of electronic dance lies with the underground, others are convinced that it will only be a temporary trend.
One reason for this is that it is difficult to find a consistent sound and style across all electronic dance tracks. A common factor in many electronic dance tracks is the use of reverb. Reverb is used to Enhance the sound of vocals and other instruments but is also common among all electronic dance tracks. Some artists choose not to include this feature in their songs and instead opt for the more traditional means of creating a drum ‘beat’.
Though the evolution of electronic music may seem to be limited to one particular form of dance, this is far from the truth. Due to the interlinking of electronic and dance genres, many other areas of dance are finding relevance in both the fields. For example, new forms of dance music are finding favor with the increasing popularity of EDM (Electronic Dance Music) and break dance. Electronic music is also finding its way into many traditional forms of dance, notably through the resurgence of Latin and Balenatics dance. In fact, many classical dance forms, which were once entirely dependent upon electronic dance beats, can now be found playing on home and club mixers.
The future of electronic dance music is looking bright as technology continues to advance. Technological advancements mean that producers are able to create high quality sound on a smaller and more portable platform. This has opened up the market for electronic dance clubs to expand into regions previously inaccessible to producers. Moreover, the internet provides an ever expanding source for purchasing electronic equipment and software. With online retailers such as iTunes and Amazon now offer a wide range of electronic dance products, making it easier than ever before to obtain great electronic music.