70 Techno Music Classics You Need to Know

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


In this blog post, we’ll be taking a look at 70 of the best techno music classics that you need to know. These tracks are essential for any fan of the genre and will help you get a better understanding of the history of techno music.


Techno music is a genre of electronic dance music that originated in Detroit, Michigan in the United States in the late 1980s. The first techno track is widely considered to be “Jaguar” by Joey Beltram, which was released on the New York City record label Transmat in 1987. Techno is characterized by a strong 4/4 beat, often with driving, hypnotic basslines and syncopated percussion. It is often played at fast tempos, ranging from 120 to 150 beats per minute (bpm).

Over the past 30 years, techno has evolved and splintered into many different subgenres, with each artist putting their own spin on the sound. Today, there are countless different subgenres of techno being made all over the world. In this list, we’ve selected 70 of the best techno tracks of all time, spanning the entirety of the genre’s history.

Classics You Need to Know

Techno music has been around for decades and has gone through many changes. There are a lot of great techno songs out there, but there are a few that are considered classics. In this article, we will list 70 techno music classics that you need to know.

“Strings of Life” by Derrick May

Derrick May’s “Strings of Life” is one of the most influential techno tracks of all time. The song helped to define the Detroit sound of techno music and was an instant hit when it was released in 1987. “Strings of Life” is a perfect example of the hypnotic, repetitive style that characterizes techno music. The song’s signature strings are provided by a Roland TR-909 drum machine, which gives the track its distinctive sound.

“Inner City Life” by Goldie

Goldie’s “Inner City Life” is one of the most iconic tracks in the history of drum & bass and jungle music. The track was released in 1994 on the Metalheadz label, and features a samples from the “Theme from Foxy Brown” as well as vocals from Diane Charlemagne. “Inner City Life” was a huge hit in the UK, reaching #19 on the UK Singles Chart, and helped to establish Goldie as one of the leading figures in jungle and drum & bass.

“Bug in the Bassbin” by Plastikman

“Bug in the Bassbin” by Plastikman is one of the most well-known techno tracks of all time. The track was first released in 1994 on Richie Hawtin’s iconic album Mixmag Presents Plastikman Live, and it quickly became a club anthem. The track is characterized by its dark, industrial sound and its simple, driving bassline. “Bug in the Bassbin” is a true techno classic, and it is essential listening for any fan of the genre.

“No Way Back” by Adonis

Adonis’s “No Way Back” is a classic techno track that was released in 1987. The song was ahead of its time, and its sound is still fresh and innovative today. The track starts with a simple, driving drum beat that sets the mood for the rest of the song. A synthesizer comes in, playing a catchy melody that will stay in your head long after the song is over. The track builds in intensity as it goes on, culminating in a powerful finish that will leave you wanting more.

“Flash” by Green Velvet

“Flash” is a 1996 techno track by American artist Green Velvet. The song was a major hit in the UK, reaching number 3 on the UK Singles Chart, and has been credited as one of the tracks that popularized techno music in the country. The song’s distinctive vocals, provided by Green Velvet himself, have also become iconic, and have been sampled and interpolated numerous times in subsequent years.

“Spastik” by Plastikman

“Spastik” is a 1993 techno classic by Richie Hawtin (a.k.a. Plastikman). The track was originally released on Plus 8, a Canadian techno label founded by Hawtin and John Acquaviva. “Spastik” is built around a simple, four-note bassline that drives the track forward with its relentless energy. The persistent hi-hats and cymbal hits keep the groove moving, while the sixteenth-note melody provides an ethereal counterpoint to the bassline. “Spastik” is a perfect example of minimal techno at its finest, and it remains one of Hawtin’s most iconic tracks.

“Phuture” by Phuture

“Phuture” is a track from the album We Are Phuture, which was released in 1986. The track is considered a classic of the genre, and is credited with helping to pioneer the use of acid house in techno music.

“Pac-Man” by Mr. Oizo

“Pac-Man” is a techno classic by French artist Mr. Oizo. The track was released in 1999 as part of Oizo’s album Analog Worms Attack.

“Pac-Man” is a minimal, glitchy track that features a distorted sample of the theme song from the classic video game Pac-Man. The track was an underground hit and helped to propel Oizo to prominence in the techno scene.

“I Feel Love” by Donna Summer

“I Feel Love” is a song by Donna Summer, released in 1977 on the Casablanca Records label. It was produced by Italian record producer Giorgio Moroder and co-written by him and American singer and songwriter Pete Bellotte. The song became one of the first Disco hits to have a completely synthesised backing track.

The song was voted the greatest dance track of all time byMixmag readers in 1993. In 2000, it was ranked at number five on VH1’s Greatest Dance Songs of the 20th Century countdown. In 2004, it was placed at number 51 inThe Observer’s 100 Greatest Tracks list. In 2011, Pitchfork Media ranked it seventh on their list of “The 200 Greatest Songs of the 1970s”.

“Tubular Bells” by Mike Oldfield

Tubular Bells is the debut album by English musician Mike Oldfield, released on 25 May 1973 by Virgin Records. Despite receiving mixed reviews upon its release, Tubular Bells became hugely popular and provided the name forRichard Branson’s Virgin Records label. It was not until Oldfield’s next album,Hergest Ridge in 1974, that he received critical acclaim from music critics. AllMusic later described the work as “a monumental achievement in progressive rock”.[1]

The piece was recorded in 1972 and 1973 at The Manor (Virgin’s rural recording studio in Oxfordshire) and Virgin’s Town House studios in London. engineered by Simon Heyworth and supervised byTom Newman, it was produced by Tollin/Robbins Productions, a production team consisting of young record producerSimon Draper and experienced engineer-producerMurray Head.


We hope you’ve enjoyed our guide to 70 of the most important techno music classics. Techno is a genre that has something for everyone, with its roots in both underground and mainstream culture. Whether you’re a fan of the early pioneers or the contemporary stars, there’s a lot to explore.

Techno is a genre that is constantly evolving, so this list is by no means exhaustive. But we hope it’s given you a taste of what the genre has to offer and inspired you to check out some of these tracks for yourself. Thanks for reading!

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