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Dubstep Music

electronic music genres
sound of electronic music

I'm going to finally write about dubstep music now! One of my favorite genres of all time, and it's taken this long to write the page for it (shame on me!). This form of electronic dance music is a relatively new one, but it's also very popular (especially in the nightclub scene). It grabs its roots from many different styles, but mainly the genre dub, which comes from reggae. I put this in the drum and bass section because dub and reggae aren't really electronic genres.

When this genre first came out, it was usually placed on 2-step garage releases. It tried to fuse styles from breakbeat and drum and bass into 2-step, and came with a darker feel to it, with less importance placed on vocals. This style had a few changes it its lifetime, going from being its original sound to what it is now.

Older forms of this music placed very little importance on vocals. Due to that, most tracks were instrumental. It typically had a dark feel to it, using dissonant harmonies and slow, deep basses. The percussion is usually syncopated, like in breakbeat, and has an average tempo of about 140 beats per minute.

Some of it has changed a bit since the beginning, because now it can incorporate many different elements of other genres, like techno (minimal techno), ambient music, house, etc... This can give it a very different and even melodic feel to it. Vocals are also used much more in the modern form of dubstep.

One of the most definable characteristics is its signature "wobble bass" effect. That's where the term "wub" comes from, and also some comments placed below songs, like "WUB WUB WUB!" It's produced by manipulating a bass note on a synthesizer, using certain cut-offs, like volume, distortion, etc...

Also, the phrase "drop the bass!" is heavily referred to when talking about dubstep. A bass drop is when most or all of the sound of the track is reduced (similar to a break), and comes back with a more powerful, dominate bass, and more intense overall.

Here is some of the more modern dubstep sounds. As you can hear, it incorporates vocals, and even melodies.

history of electronic music

Dubstep music originated in England, in the South London area, which doesn't come as much of a surprise. It was around the end of the 1990s when the first tracks were released with the specifications above. By 2002, the term was used by growing record labels of this genre to describe a separate style altogether, releasing its 2-step chains.

Dubstep really grew in popularity during the middle of the 2000s, mainly 2006, when many websites, magazines and radio shows started to feature it. During this time, it spread throughout the world, to places like big cities in the United States (New York, San Francisco, Seattle, etc...), Barcelona and there are even some big names in Tokyo, Japan.

During 2007, the influences from other styles started to affect this genre. Pop performer Britany Spears, for example included some samples in her music. Songs like "Freakshow" had heavy influences from dubstep, incorporating the wobble effect and another one of her songs, released in 2011 called "Hold It Against Me" also had many characteristics of it.

In 2009, it continued to grow, both in popularity and worldwide spread. Many R&B, pop, hip-hop and mainstream celebrities started working with dubstep producers. Rihanna's album "Rated R" contained three tracks that fit the specifications, and gave this genre a huge boost in the markets.

By 2010, it was common to hear such sounds on the radio, with many tracks reaching the top 10 in the UK singles chart. Even some American producers did well with this music, reaching the same or better places in their respective charts.

Dubstep Music Specifications

Average Beats Per Minute: 140

Where It Originated: England

Stylistically Similar To: Dub, Drum and Bass, Breakbeat

Year Developed: Late 1990s


General Drum and Bass - Back to the overview of drum and bass.

Darkstep - It's dark, fast and full of energy. What more could you ask for?

Dubstep - Get with the "WUB WUB WUB" and feel that intense bass!

Post-Dubstep - The evolution of dubstep. Productions from 2011 and on.

Jump-Up - Jump up for this music! You really don't have a choice.

Liquid Funk -Softer and more ambient in nature. Does it taste good?

Neurofunk - Evolved from techstep, having many similarities to jazz and funk as well.

Techstep - A very technical genre, as well as being quite... step-like. Just read the page.

You are at dubstep music.

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