Why EDM Fans Should Embrace Sub-Genres [Editorial]
Within the last 5 years, electronic music has evolved faster than any other period in its 35+ year existence. The global advancements in technology and communication have given anyone with a computer and internet the ability to teach themselves how to produce and DJ. With this, the profile of electronic music has evolved into a multi-genre sound that can be heard on every continent of the planet.
We hear artists in every country imaginable delivering their unique, sonic perspectives on each genre, and it doesn't take long to recognize that A) these sounds are not the same, and B) they cannot solely be categorized as "EDM."
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand that dubstep isn't the same as progressive house, but it does get tough when the sounds start to unite different genres such as hybrid trap or future house. So the real question is: are these styles worth recognizing as unique to their parent genres? I believe they are, and you don't have to be a "music elitist" to understand why.
We've all experienced this scenario before - you go to see your favorite artist perform with your friends, the DJ drops a song you've never heard before, and you tell your friend "Oh my god I need this song!" So you go home and dig for hours and hours trying to find it, and when you do, you scream "hell yeah!" and proceed to dance for days on end to your new favorite track.
After a while, that super sick track you first loved loses its flare, and you go back online and start asking people for more songs like it. Despite the first 20 responses being some form of "Darude - Sandstorm," someone finally says "here, check these songs out: the genre is called psytrance."
What if you never received those "words of wisdom?" You might still be on Yahoo! Answers asking for that song that goes "dun dun dun dundundun dun." Sub-genres give us direct point of reference for expressing ourselves musically, and it allows us to evolve our tastes beyond the limits of an "electronic music fan."
That being said, one thing that must be understood is that music fans will not always see music the same way as an artist does. For the most part, producers look to use production as an creative outlet for expression, and that in itself is cannot be defined by a genre. However, when that sound is referenced to other productions by similarly-expressive artists, it is no longer just an emotionally-driven sound, but a movement as well.
Genres and sub-genres ultimately benefit the music listener by acting as a compass for finding unique sounds. Without it, our conquest for "musical enlightenment" so to speak is heavily obstructed, and we might all still be looking for that special track that goes "boom boom clap."