It’s 2016, and the music scene has been flooded with experimental electronic music. The big question is: Will it remain “underground” or will it hit mainstream? Let’s take a look at the overall picture:
The rise of Soundcloud
In 2013, Soundcloud had a massive leap in its userbase. With this leap came the discovery of new genres such as future bass. Artists such as Flume, What So Not and Ta-ku exploded on the internet due to their unique sounds and style.
I made a comment recently on how I used to hate electronic music but that it’s been growing on me. In particular, I’ve been listening to experimental electronic and in my opinion it is the best genre of music out there.
I believe that this type of music will hit the mainstream within the next few years, for a few reasons. One is that more people are starting to listen to it now, so it will get more exposure in the coming years. Secondly, there are now many more artists making this kind of music than before, and also there’s been an increase in quality from many artists (ESPECIALLY SOPHIE). And lastly, I believe producers will start using these techniques more often as time goes on due to the quality of sound that comes out of them.
The following article is written by a writer who has been monitoring the experimental electronic music scene for several years now.
The experimental electronic music scene has witnessed major changes in 2016. The genre has been one of the fastest growing ones in recent years and the last year has been no different. Several new artists have joined the ranks of more established acts while listeners have also seen an increase in the number of venues that cater to this niche. The main reason for this is that many people are looking for new genres to listen to, and experimental electronic music offers a lot of variety for those who want something new and different.
The past few years have seen an increase in support for experimental electronic music. While mainstream artists are still trying to fit into the pop mold, movement is happening in the underground that will inevitably make its way to the mainstream. Artists such as Flying Lotus and Jamie xx have been making their way onto the radio and we’ve been seeing more and more festivals dedicate a stage to electronic music.
As the world becomes more technologically advanced, there will be a demand for things that are futuristic and exciting. Electronic music has always been on the forefront of what’s “next” in music and it’s becoming increasingly popular for people to turn toward genres with darker sounds. I think we’ll continue to see more dark ambient, noise, deep house, and other experimental genres enter the mainstream.
The landscape of mainstream popular music has been shaped in large part by the work of experimental electronic artists.
In 2016, the Genre Exposition & Review (GER) Project will bring together experts from across EDM and pop music scenes to discuss, debate, and explore how this intertwining of genres has led us to this point — and where we might go next.
The past few years have seen an exponential growth in the influence of experimental electronic music on mainstream pop music. Experimental electronic music has now permeated every genre of popular music, from rap to EDM, and continues to gain more popularity with each year. The growing success of labels like Hyperdub, Tri-Angle, and Hessle Audio have demonstrated the commercial viability of experimental electronic music.
But why has this happened? How has a genre that was for decades only heard in small clubs, at underground raves, or through mail-order cassette tapes suddenly become so popular?
The answer is simple: technology. With the advent of the internet and software like Ableton Live, it’s never been easier to create new kinds of music. If you’re looking to make experimental electronic music, all you need is a computer and some ideas. As a result, there are hundreds of genres that would have been unthinkable in previous decades (e.g., vaporwave and footwork). These new musical possibilities are exciting for both producers and listeners alike.
How long will this trend continue? My guess is that it will continue indefinitely. We’ve got our entire lives ahead of us!
Experimental electronic music has, in the last 5 years or so, been slowly breaking into the mainstream. It’s been a slow process, but I feel that in 2016 this will accelerate significantly.
The basis of my argument is as follows:
1) The growth of EDM or “big room house” music culture has been fuelled by young people looking for new experiences
As electronic music has become more popular and more accessible through digital means, it has become a rich breeding ground for experimentation and innovation. The more popular it’s become, the more it’s branched out from established sounds and genres. This is partly because technology has made a wider variety of sounds available to producers, and partly because there are simply many more producers now than there were 20 years ago.
2) Young people have grown up with greater access to technology than previous generations
As technology becomes more pervasive in our lives, young people grow up with a familiarity with it that was absent in previous generations. They have grown up using laptops to do their homework, using tablets to play games, using smartphones to communicate with their friends. The fact that these devices are easy to use is an important factor here – you only use them effectively if they’re intuitive and well designed.