What's Up With All This EDM Business?

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Everyones_A_Critic

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I've been on a total and complete hip-hop binge for the last two years or so, only dabbling in EDM when it came to super mainstream acts like Daft Punk and Deadmau5. At the beginning of this year, however, I started getting more and more engrossed in it and even developed a fondness for dubstep. When I got into hip-hop I watched tons of documentaries, listened to many classic albums, absorbed lyrical techniques, and I basically immersed myself in the culture, as much as a white kid can without being douchy.

I've been to a few EDM shows as of late, and they've all been pretty mainstream acts. 3lau, Flux Pavillion, Bassnectar, etc. I follow these dudes and a bunch more on Facebook/Twitter, but yesterday it sort of dawned on me that I am to EDM what Drake fans are to hip-hop: that is, looked down upon for my ignorance to a culture I am unwittingly helping to destroy. Deadmau5 went on a rant that pissed a lot of people off, in which he claims all most non-turntable DJ's do on stage is "Push play", himself included. Given some of the reactions in my SHM Break-Up Thread got it's pretty obvious that there's a stigma against "Mainstream EDM", which I'm perfectly fine with. I just want to know why people find it inferior to the more obscure stuff.

Now, through following all these dudes on social networks, I've seen a lot of unrest in the form of comments and replies. Fans are worried about EDM becoming too mainstream, and thus, vulnerable to corporate meddling. Having jumped on the bandwagon pretty blatantly and recently with all of this, I can't help but feel I'm part of the problem. I don't really give a fuck whether a song is "mainstream" or not, because caring about that shit is just dumb: if you like it, listen to it. If not, fuck it then. But I want to educate myself about EDM in the way that I educated myself about hip-hop. When I started listening to rap I was that asshole that only liked super-lyrical artists. Now I've broadened my horizons much more, and for the better. I want to be on the same level with EDM, but holy fuck is it hard to keep up with all the new music. All the new bootlegs. DJ _____'s remix or DJ ______'s cut of DJ ________'s original song. It's exhausting.

So, why are all these DJ's getting pissed off and or worried about the future of EDM? Even Deadmau5 said it was a sinking ship, but I'm confused as to what he meant by that, since I'm obviously really new to all of this. This isn't a thread to post your favorite EDM track and nothing else, I really want some opinions here on what you value most in this music and why mainstream is or isn't satisfying that need. Educate me. I hope I haven't rambled too long.

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DeF

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#2  Edited By DeF

WTF is EDM? :)

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Everyones_A_Critic

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@DeF said:

WTF is EDM? :)

Electronic Dance Music. Probably should've included that in the OP.

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TheHT

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#4  Edited By TheHT

@Everyones_A_Critic said:

I just want to know why people find it inferior to the more obscure stuff.

Hipstering.

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DeF

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#5  Edited By DeF

@Everyones_A_Critic: Alright, thanks. That would've been my guess :)

That said, other than occasionally stumbling over songs from that field (like the Super Joystiq Podcast theme which is a remix from a game soundtrack), I really love what Pretty Lights do/does. It's some weird mix between Hip Hop and Soul samples with borderline wub wub instrumentation that is usually pretty mellow while still conveying a lot of energy. It should be a good fit for you since he/they (no idea if it's multiple people) mix/es both elements quite well.

A little overview:

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EuanDewar

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#6  Edited By EuanDewar

I thought Take Care was pretty good overall.

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Everyones_A_Critic

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@TheHT said:

@Everyones_A_Critic said:

I just want to know why people find it inferior to the more obscure stuff.

Hipstering.

Well, yeah, I figured as much. But is there anything more to it?

@EuanDewar said:

I thought Take Care was pretty good overall.

I'm just gonna go ahead and ignore that and say I checked out DFA and DAMN!

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EuanDewar

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#8  Edited By EuanDewar
@Everyones_A_Critic I fuckin KNOW RIGHT! So hot, so erotic, so fuckin pumped up
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Leptok

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#9  Edited By Leptok

I think deadmau5 had a problem with stuff like this:

http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DKv-EnsyI5ns%26feature%3Dshare&feature;=share&v;=Kv-EnsyI5ns≷=US

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Leptok

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#10  Edited By Leptok

Sorry, posting in mobile.

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TheVeteran13

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#11  Edited By TheVeteran13

You saw Flux Pavillion? You lucky bastard.

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ItBeStefYo

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#12  Edited By ItBeStefYo

You need to start listening to IDM

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hershey07

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#13  Edited By hershey07

I have no problem with DJ's going auto-pilot for their sets. I'm there for their identity as a producer, not as a DJ. But what really gets to me is the lack of variety in their shows. Usually, most DJ's will create one set, and one set only. They will recycle this set and use it for most of their tour. This entire debacle of EDM and DJing is more of a reality check for the fans and it's producers. Don't get me wrong, there are producers out there that put in a lot of work for their sets, but for most, it's just "push play".

EDM isn't particularly going mainstream in that it's on the radio, but rather because of this - (Exactly what Deadmau5 was talking about)

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Everyones_A_Critic

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@TheVeteran13 said:

You saw Flux Pavillion? You lucky bastard.

Yeah, he was great. Seemed like a really down to earth guy, too. Dude didn't go on until almost midnight but kept the place banging until 3 AM.

@Hershey07: Damn, that Paris video is cringe-worthy. I think I understand a bit better now. When I saw Bassnectar in Boston in April he was doing a double date, and I attended both shows. At the end of the first show he said "I realize we're in a recession and I just want to thank all of you guys for coming out anyway!" and then started his second set the next night with "I know a lot of you guys were here last night, so I've arranged an entirely different set for you all!" His lightshow/effects/sets were amazing.

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Harkat

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#15  Edited By Harkat

Eh, nothing to worry about dude. Like what you like. Flux Pavilion was pretty decent a few years ago, back when he made Meathead, Show Off, Steppa and stuff. No shame in liking Flux Pavilion.

EDIT: No shame in liking anything. Except fucking Levels. Fuck that tune.

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hershey07

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#16  Edited By hershey07

@Everyones_A_Critic: That Gotye acapella is forever ruined.

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DAFTPUNK

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#17  Edited By DAFTPUNK

just find the right artist! ex.

Hardwell, R3hab, Afrojack, Steve aoki, Nicky Romero, Tiesto, DaftPunk, Avicii, those are only some!

EDM is still fresh as ever!

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captain_clayman

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#18  Edited By captain_clayman

First start with the classics. Boards of Canada, Aphex Twin,DJ Shadow, Gorillaz, Fatboy Slim, The prodigy, Squarepusher, i know there's more but that's all i can think of at the moment.

Obviously cross by Justice if you havent heard that yet. Porter Robinson is really good, especially his early stuff. Mord Fustang is also amazing. also i know you listen to Deadmau5 but have you listened to his earlier stuff? Get Scraped is completely different than 4x4=12, and random album title is my favorite album by him.

For D & B, Spor is really intense so be warned, and so is Noisia. nero, netsky, and dirtyphonics are all super awesome too.

Koan Sound has some of the best Glitch-Hop/Dubstep i've heard.

And for the more obscure, the uk garage/future garage scene has a lot of interesting stuff going on right now. Burial is amazing. his stuff takes some getting used to though. i honestly didn't like him at first but every time i listened to his stuff it grew on me. in that same type of vibe are Moderat, Boxcutter, Synkro.

And that's just scratching the surface. there's so much more you (and i) havent even heard of yet

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Everyones_A_Critic

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@captain_clayman: D.A.N.C.E. and Genesis are the only Justice tracks I know, the first one I fucking despise and the second one is pretty damn good. I do know a good bit of Deadmau5's early material as he was one of the very first ones I got into. I saw Mord Fustang at a local event earlier this year and he was pretty damn good, I'll be seeing him and Porter Robinson at Camp Bisco in 2 weeks so I should dig deeper into them. I've been sleeping on Porter for far too long, I first heard about him buying Glowsticks at iParty one day. Some dude recommended him to me and told me and my friend to stay away from "That red ecstasy." Must be the Feeling was the first I'd ever heard of Nero but damn is that track great.

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Scrawnto

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#20  Edited By Scrawnto

@captain_clayman: Ooh! I've been trying to figure out how to find more artists to check out. There definitely some I'm not familiar with there.

Fun fact, if you don't follow his twitter, former Giant Bomb intern Nick Robinson is Porter Robinson's older brother. Nick's twitter is actually how I first heard of Porter.

@Everyones_A_Critic: Check out Justice's second album, Audio, Video, Disco. It's got a pretty different style that you might find interesting.

But yeah, EDM is still totally rad. Of course some of it is bad. That's true of everything, and it's not a sign of decay, by any means.

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Vault101

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#21  Edited By Vault101

EDM...like Electronic dance music? you can't lump all the sub-genres together as one...Dubstep or "Brostep" is whats popular now(somwhat infamous) personally I don't like calling it "dance" music...kind of implies its a shallow thing compared to other genres when it doesnt have to be also Glitch Mob...fucking awsome

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cookiemonster

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#22  Edited By cookiemonster

EDM is such a vague term that you could probably lump nearly all dance acts into it. So in saying that, most of the music that is popular at the minute is EDM, with the charts full of all this absolutely terrible sub-Guetta bullshit. And all of the songs being exactly the same - some pumping 4/4 beat, with vocals over produced to fuck and some kind of 'break down' which will be some horrific brostep wub wub shit or some noise in the song turned up a bit louder. So I can get why people are sick of it.

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deactivated-5b6c667dde711

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@CookieMonster said:

EDM is such a vague term that you could probably lump nearly all dance acts into it. So in saying that, most of the music that is popular at the minute is EDM, with the charts full of all this absolutely terrible sub-Guetta bullshit. And all of the songs being exactly the same - some pumping 4/4 beat, with vocals over produced to fuck and some kind of 'break down' which will be some horrific brostep wub wub shit or some noise in the song turned up a bit louder. So I can get why people are sick of it.

The breakdown of a song is where the beat stops. It's good for creating tension on a dancefloor... but if you're listening to dance music outside of a club or festival then I agree, the cookie-cutter production of tracks within each genre gets pretty tiring.

Joel/Deadmau5's rants... I can agree with some points he makes, though I don't think they're always that well thought-out. Dubstep is a fad which will die in a few years', tops. While I think EDM will continue being played in clubs in some shape or form, I think it won't be too long before it returns to an underground sort of state and the top-40 stops being ruled by Guetta's bullshit.

Anyway. I'd recommend Wolfgang Gartner, Netsky, Knife Party, Kaskade, Camo & Krooked, The Chemical Brothers, Chase & Status, Sub Focus, Danny Byrd, SBTRKT, Pryda/Eric Prydz/Cirez D -- depending on your preferences for genres. Also pretty much every artist which has been mentioned already in this thread is good.

I have a bunch of other artists in my library, but most of them only have a small selection of good songs. If you want to keep up, start browsing sites like Beatport, Junodownload and connect the dots from artist to artist through remixes, or by seeing who's following who on Soundcloud. It's pretty great discovering new and talented artists this way.