Electronic Music Quizlet

Electronic music uses electronic instruments and circuit-based technology to produce sounds. It may feature beat-driven genres like rock/metal or be more ambient-styled.

Early 1900s electronics saw significant advancements; Pierre Schaeffer combined everyday recorded sounds to produce Musique Concrete while Telharmonium allowed musicians to manipulate sound frequency with keyboard control and Theremin allowed them to modulate its direction.


Electronic music employs electronic instruments and technology to produce musical sounds. Additionally, computer programs create rhythms, timbres and dynamics which may be modified or imitated to enhance film scores or create club-like environments. Compositions created from electronic music range from simple beats and basslines up to intricate compositions made entirely with computers and digital synthesizers.

Electronic music’s roots can be traced to composers in the 1950s who began experimenting with electronic instruments in their work, recording everyday sounds and then incorporating them into new compositions to explore aural collage. This form of composition came to be known as musique concrete before transitioning into more abstract spectralism styles created by Edgard Varese, Andre Jolivet, Olivier Messiaen and Tory Takemitsu who used this type of composition for avant-garde styles that integrated various elements like irregular melodies or asymmetrical structures and irregular melodies.

Synthesizers were made more affordable for musicians in the 1970s and 80s, leading to the proliferation of electronic genres such as disco, house and trance – often driven by rhythmically driven basslines with hypnotic synth modulations – often with elaborate lighting shows or visuals to enhance audience experiences of performances.

More artists than ever before are turning to this genre of music for inspiration and background score use in pop and rock bands as well as for movies and television. Additionally, its use has seen it evolve into dance genres such as techno and acid house; attributing its success to its ability to combine traditional forms with modern technologies.

Luigi Russolo was one of the earliest pioneers of electronic music and wrote a manifesto in 1913 that promoted noise use in composition. He believed that urban industrial soundscape had altered human auditory receptors and necessitated new approaches to composition and instrumentation in music.

Maurice Martenot was another pioneer in this field when he created an electronic musical instrument known as the Ondes Martenot in 1928. Resembling a keyboard without pipes or piano keys, it used a pressure-sensitive fingerboard instead. One of its early advantages was expressive playing; players could control dynamics without touching it; its sound is similar to that of theremin. Friedrich Trautwein later developed a more advanced version known as Novachord that used tube oscillators instead of soundwaves to generate tones instead of soundwaves while providing controls for depth, brilliance attack and vibrato to produce sounds.


Electronic music’s roots can be traced back to the early 20th century when scientists first created electronic musical instruments. Of particular note was the Theremin, a device which produced sounds by manipulating electromagnetic fields with player hands – its haunting, otherworldly tones were key precursors for future developments of electronic music.

In the 1940s, magnetic tape enabled musicians to record sounds and manipulate their pitch or speed, leading to electroacoustic tape music by composers such as Edgard Varese and Morton Subotnick as well as French musician Isao Tomita and Japanese musician Osamu Kitajima – two notable innovators who pioneered its development.

By the 1950s, electronic music had gained significant momentum and universities established research facilities to explore it further. Instruments such as the Telharmonium and Ondes Martenot allowed musicians to manipulate sound by sliding their fingers across a keyboard – providing new timbres of music and ultimately leading to genres like electronica and techno.

At this time, many popular artists began incorporating electronic sounds into their work. The Beatles released several albums featuring electronic instruments such as Theremin and Mellotron; other rock bands also added oscillators into their sound palette; composers Ramon Sender, Paulina Oliverose and Morton Subotnick were among those at this time who used electronics extensively in their compositions.

DJs in clubs, parties and raves began playing European electronic music during the 1980s in Germany and the UK, leading to new dance genres such as house, acid house, and trance forming alongside electronic subgenres such as dubstep drum and bass and breakbeat hardcore that emerged during this decade.

In the 1990s, digital audio workstations (DAW) unleashed an explosion of innovation in electronic music production, as musicians were now able to compose and produce their music entirely on computers using these new tools – opening up endless opportunities for new sounds and composition techniques; pioneers like Aphex Twin and Autechre were pushing boundaries of production further still.

By the 2000s, many forms of electronic music had emerged, with experimental styles like glitch and trip hop becoming popular. By 2010, US DJ and producer Skrillex had achieved prominence through his dubstep productions that fused hardcore drumming with heavy bass; his work inspired other producers of this style such as British artist Phaeleh; other prominent examples of this genre include Daft Punk, Underworld and Faithless.


Electronic music spans multiple genres and has become increasingly popular over time. While some electronic genres remain entirely digital, others have been remixed to fit with modern sounds that make use of laptop computers and production software to easily produce songs.

Electronic music can be defined by several distinct traits: firstly, its use of machine-based sounds to manipulate electric instruments that manipulate synthetic or sampled sounds; this allows musicians to compose various styles using filters and delays as well as playing multiple notes at the same time – creating complex soundscapes with complex layers.

Early development of electronic music was propelled by the invention and proliferation of electrical devices. This marked an important moment in music history, allowing composers to experiment with new instruments and sounds; one such groundbreaking example being Halim El-Dabh’s 1944 composition ‘Leiyla and the Poet’ which fused electronic with traditional Arabic instruments.

Discovering magnetic tape was another significant advancement that revolutionized recording and editing music, leading to further innovations such as sound speed adjustment and graphic sound technology. Electronic music allowed composers to create acoustic compositions combining electronic sounds with orchestral instruments, further expanding musical possibilities. Electronic music has flourished significantly since 2000 due to technological developments and DJing’s growing popularity. EDM (Electronic Dance Music) has become one of the most commercially successful electronic genres with artists like Skrillex and Zomboy performing regularly at large-scale festivals.

Ambient, vaporwave and tropical house music genres also fall into this genre category. Vaporwave has gained in popularity recently as it can be quite relaxing while also being humorous – sometimes making fun of our consumerist society and featuring long pads, evolving modulation and drones; similarly Tropical house has similar elements but with lighter sounds and catchier melodies; artists such as Kygo have created popular pop remixes within this style of music.

Drum and bass has also gained immense popularity. Based around samples of drum breaks from funk and soul records that are pitched up into an infectious dance rhythm, it has inspired other genres like glitch hop, grime and footwork. Electropop has also experienced growth recently with artists like Britney Spears, Calvin Harris and Dua Lipa championing it as ambassadors of this form of electronic music. Each genre offers something different allowing listeners to experience its diversity.