This is a list of electronic music genres, consisting of genres of electronic music, primarily created with electronic musical instruments or electronic music technology. A distinction has been made between sound produced using electromechanical means and that produced using electronic technology. Examples of electromechanical sound producing devices include the telharmonium, Hammond organ, electric piano, and the electric guitar. Purely electronic sound production can be achieved using devices such as the theremin, sound synthesizer, and computer. Genre, however, is not always dependent on instrumentation.
In its early development, electronic music was associated almost exclusively with Western art music, but from the late 1960s, the availability of affordable music technology—particularly of synthesizers—meant that music produced using electronic means became increasingly common in the popular domains of rock and pop music and classical music, resulting in major electronically based subgenres. After the definition of MIDI in 1982 and the development of digital audio, the creation of purely electronic sounds and their manipulation became much simpler. As a result, synthesizers came to dominate the pop music of the early 1980s. In the late 1980s, electronic dance music (EDM) records made using only electronic instruments became increasingly popular, resulting in a proliferation of electronic genres, subgenres, and scenes. In the new millennium, as computer technology became even more accessible and music software advanced, interacting with music production technology made it possible to create music that has some similarities and some differences to traditional musical performance practices, leading to further developments and rapidly evolving subgenres.
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