Has Electronic Dance Music Lost Its Way?

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

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


A look at how electronic dance music has changed over the years and whether or not it has lost its way.

The state of EDM

Electronic Dance Music, or EDM, has been around for decades now. It has evolved and changed a lot since it first started becoming popular in the clubs. Some people say that it has lost its way and is not what it used to be. Let’s take a look at the state of EDM today.

Mainstream acceptance

The term “EDM” has become so mainstream that it has lost its meaning. It is no longer just electronic dance music, but has become a catch-all term for anything that is produced with a computer. This includes pop, hip-hop, and even country music. While this may be good for the genre in terms of acceptance, it has led to a watering down of the sound.

Increased popularity

As the 2010s come to a close, it is safe to say that electronic dance music (EDM) has seen its fair share of good times and bad times. Nevertheless, it would be naïve to say that the genre is not as popular as it was 10 years ago. In fact, one could argue that EDM is more popular now than it has ever been.

There are a number of reasons for this increased popularity. Firstly, the 2010s saw the rise of social media, which allowed EDM artists to connect with their fans in a way that was never before possible. Additionally, the 2010s witnessed the birth of streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music, which made it easier than ever for people to listen to EDM music. Finally, the 2010s was a decade in which electronic music festivals such as Tomorrowland and Ultra Music Festival became increasingly popular, helping to further promote the genre.

The problems with EDM

In the past decade, electronic dance music has exploded in popularity. What was once a niche genre played in underground clubs has gone mainstream, with festivals and arena shows selling out around the world. However, some believe that EDM has lost its way, becoming too commercialized and cookie-cutter. In this article, we’ll explore the problems with EDM and see if the genre has lost its way.

Lack of creativity

EDM has become increasingly formulaic in recent years, with producers following a strict template to create hit tracks. This lack of creativity has led to listener fatigue, and many fans have become disenchanted with the genre as a result.


In the world of EDM, sampling has become both a god-send and a crutch. For artists, it’s an easy way to put together a song without having to come up with all new material. For fans, it’s a way to instantly recognize a favorite melody or riff. But at what cost?

On the one hand, sampling allows for a level of creativity and collaboration that wouldn’t be possible otherwise. After all, some of the most iconic tracks in EDM history have been built on samples (think Eric Prydz’s “Call on Me” or Deadmau5′ “Strobe”). But on the other hand, it can lead to a feeling of déjà vu, as if we’ve heard this song before – because we have. In an age where there are so many songs being released each day, it’s hard to stand out from the crowd when you’re using the same samples as everyone else.

There is no easy answer to this problem. Sampling is here to stay, and there will always be artists who use it effectively and creatively. But in a genre that is already struggling with originality, it might be time to start thinking outside the sample.

The future of EDM

Electronic Dance Music, once a niche genre, has now exploded in popularity in recent years. With the rise of mainstream artists such as Calvin Harris and Avicii, EDM has become a widely popular genre. However, some believe that EDM has lost its way, becoming too commercialized and losing its underground roots.

The return to underground

In recent years, there has been a growing trend of electronic dance music (EDM) producers and DJs returning to their underground roots. This move away from the mainstream EDM sound has been happening for a variety of reasons, but one of the main driving factors has been a desire to get back to the purer, more authentic sound of dance music.

This return to underground dance music has been led by a new generation of producers and DJs who are influenced by the early pioneers of EDM, such as Kraftwerk, Giorgio Moroder, and Afrika Bambaataa. These artists are now using modern production techniques to create fresh and innovative sounds that are getting people excited about dance music again.

So why has there been this return to underground dance music? One reason is that many people feel that mainstream EDM has become too commercialised and formulaic. By returning to its roots, underground dance music is able to retain its sense of adventure and experimentation, which is what made it so exciting in the first place.

Another reason for the return to underground dance music is that it simply sounds better. With its focus on quality over quantity, underground dance music is able to offer a more refined and mature sound that is both sophisticated and exciting. This is something that mainstream EDM often lacks.

So if you’re looking for something new and exciting in the world of dance music, be sure to check out the latest from the underground scene. You might just find your new favourite sound.

The rise of new genres

In recent years, electronic dance music has undergone something of a renaissance, with new genres and subgenres springing up left and right. This is partly due to the increasing popularity of streaming services like Spotify and Soundcloud, which have made it easier than ever for artists to reach a global audience.

However, some purists argue that the increasingly commercial sound of EDM has lost its way, and that the genre has become too watered down. They point to the rise of genres like “trap” and “future bass” as evidence that EDM has strayed too far from its underground roots.

What do you think? Has electronic dance music lost its way, or is it just evolving in response to changes in the industry?

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