EDM vs. Electronic Dance Music – What’s the Difference?

Have you ever found yourself tangled in the web of electronic music genres, unsure of the distinction between EDM and electronic dance music? Music genres can often be a labyrinth of confusion, particularly when it comes to distinguishing between EDM (Electronic Dance Music) as a specific genre and electronic dance music as a broader term.

This confusion is not limited to any specific region, as many DJs, particularly in the Philippines, often find themselves perplexed by these terms. Many people erroneously categorize techno, house, trance, and other dance-oriented genres as EDM when, in fact, they fall under the umbrella of electronic dance music. Let’s try to dispel the misconceptions and shed light on the true disparities between EDM and electronic dance music, fostering a clearer understanding of these terms.

Defining EDM as a Genre

EDM, known for its accessibility and popularity in mainstream culture, is a genre that locally Filipino producer-DJs such as Strodano, Nerf, DJ Young, and Awit Awards Winner Louis Vint are actively involved in. It embraces catchy melodies, driving rhythms, and a focus on creating an immersive and energetic experience on the dancefloor. Renowned artists like Avicii, Calvin Harris, David Guetta, and Martin Garrix have been instrumental in shaping the EDM landscape, mastering the art of creating infectious beats and melodic hooks. These artists have become household names, attracting massive crowds and dominating festival lineups, contributing to the global success and dominance of EDM within the music industry.

Understanding Electronic Dance Music as a Broad Term

Electronic dance music, often referred to as EDM in casual conversation, is a comprehensive term that encompasses a vast array of dance-oriented genres and styles. It includes EDM as a specific genre but extends beyond it to include techno, house, trance, and other related subgenres. Electronic dance music serves as an umbrella term that unifies these genres under a single category, highlighting their shared focus on creating music for the purpose of dance and live performance.

EDM, EDM vs electronic dance music - Midnight Rebels
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Distinguishing Some Genres under Electronic Dance Music

  1. Techno: Techno originated in Detroit during the 1980s and is characterized by repetitive beats, hypnotic rhythms, and futuristic sounds. It has since branched out into various subgenres such as minimal techno, Detroit techno, and acid techno.
  2. House: Originating in Chicago, house music is known for its four-on-the-floor beats, soulful vocals, and uplifting melodies. Subgenres within house include deep house, progressive house, and tech house.
  3. Trance: Trance music is often associated with its euphoric melodies, uplifting atmospheres, and driving rhythms. It employs arpeggios, gated synths, and build-up/breakdown structures to create an immersive experience.

The Fine Line

EDM vs. Electronic Dance Music: EDM is a specific genre within the broader scope of electronic dance music. While EDM has gained significant popularity and recognition, it represents only a fraction of the diverse range of genres that fall under the electronic dance music category. Techno, house, trance, and other related genres are correctly categorized as electronic dance music, rather than being synonymous with EDM. – Difference between EDM and electronic dance music.

By understanding the distinction between EDM as a genre and electronic dance music as a comprehensive term, we can foster clarity and eliminate the confusion that often arises in music discussions. While EDM refers to a specific genre characterized by its energetic beats and electronic instrumentation, electronic dance music serves as a broader umbrella term encompassing a wide array of dance-oriented genres. By recognizing these differences, we can appreciate the diversity and richness of electronic dance music in all its forms. So, whether you’re a fan of EDM or any other subgenre within electronic dance music, there is an electrifying world of beats and rhythms awaiting your exploration and enjoyment.


DJ | Music Producer | Multi- Instrumentalist | Midnight Rebels CFO

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