Why Melodic techno is bad dance music

We at Peace of Mind are not into melodic techno. We think that the music lacks rhythm and feels fake, overly emotional, melodramatic, pseudo-sentimental, and boring. The DJs sets are weak, stopping the rhythm and playing overly pretentious intros in the middle of the set is dull and interrupts the collective energy on the dance floor. While we feel it’s okay to play synthesizers and psychedelic intros as long as you keep up the rhythm, melodic techno does not. We go to nightclubs to dance, not to stand around and film the light show with our phones.

For example:

We have been very disappointed by Tale of Us for example a few times (Ibiza and Brussels) – can anybody explain to us why they are popular?

Tale of Us sets are spectacularly horrendous It is music for k-holers and selfie-centric instagramers who don’t want to mess up their makeup, their sets are not danceable and the crowd just stands around. And the tasteless visuals don’t make boring music better.

Tale of Us uses visuals that are distracting for the collective effervescence on the dance floor. Here is a disturbing example Anyma & Chris Avantgarde – Eternity [Live from Afterlife Tulum] (notice no one is dancing):

Good DJs don’t need visuals. Their reliance on badly conceived figurative robots videos in DJ sets is pathetic, the visuals create a sense of separation and detachment instead of enhancing the dance floor experience. The essence of a dance floor lies in the music and the collective energy it creates. A skilled DJ can create an ecstatic atmosphere through their music selection and mixing, engaging the crowd without relying on visuals that alienate. Instead of getting lost in phone-filming and sharing on Instagram and TikTok, let go and immerse yourself in the rhythm and connect with the music and the people around you. Create memories that go beyond social media, and feel the magic of the dance floor!

Kölsch, Artbat and many others that we have heard are really weak and undanceable like Tale of Us, pretentious and pseudo spiritual and bad for dancing.

It’s the kind of music that has flooded the festival world, delivered by artists like Kölsch, Mind Against and others in the Afterlife realm: big on feeling, light on personality (from the 2018 RA review of Agents Of Time ‎- Forest Of Lies https://ra.co/reviews/23335)

The danceability of music is influenced by several factors (besides BPM) that make people want to move and dance to the rhythm. These elements tend to make music more danceable and question melodic techno’s ability to deliver these basics. Here are some key factors:

  1. Rhythm and Beat: A strong and consistent rhythm with a prominent beat is fundamental to danceable music. A clear and easily recognizable beat gives listeners a stable foundation to synchronize their movements.
  2. Tempo: Danceable music often has a moderate to fast tempo. Generally, songs with BPM (beats per minute) in the range of 120 to 140 are considered dance-friendly. Melodic techno has a slower tempo, typically ranging from 120 to 125 beats per minute (BPM). Melodic techno also uses softer percussion. It often focuses more on melodic progressions than standard techno or house.
  3. Groove: A catchy and infectious groove that makes people want to move is crucial for danceability. This can be achieved through rhythmic patterns, syncopation, and other musical elements that create a sense of flow.
  4. Repetitive Patterns: Repetition is a common feature in dance music. Repeating musical patterns and hooks make it easier for dancers to anticipate the rhythm and join in.
  5. Strong Bassline: A well-defined and pronounced bassline can provide a solid foundation for dancers and enhance the overall energy of the music.
  6. Melodic Catchiness: Memorable and catchy melodies can make the music more engaging, encouraging people to dance along with the tune.
  7. Syncopation: Introducing unexpected accents or off-beat rhythms (syncopation) can add excitement and encourage movement.
  8. Upbeat and Positive Feel: Danceable music often has a positive, uplifting, and energetic vibe that motivates people to express themselves through dance.
  9. Simple Song Structure: Music with a straightforward and predictable song structure can make it easier for listeners to follow and dance to.
  10. Danceable Instruments: The choice of instruments can affect the danceability of the music. Drums, percussion, and instruments with rhythmic qualities often play a significant role.
  11. Production Quality: Well-produced music with a balanced mix can enhance the danceability by making the sound more immersive and enjoyable.
  12. Cultural Influences: Different cultures have distinct dance styles and preferences, so music that aligns with those cultural norms is often more danceable within those communities.

Melodic techno is bad new-age music – new-age music died in the early 90s for a good reason it was horrible, here is an example https://youtu.be/4F9DxYhqmKw

Melodic techno = Catatonic techno this is why:

Lack of Energy: We dance and prefer dance music with more intense and energetic beats, and melodic techno does not provide the same level of high-energy intensity as other dance genres.

excessively emotional or nostalgic, especially in a superficial or self-indulgent way.

Tempo and Energy: Melodic techno often features a more subdued and moderate tempo compared to other dance genres like house or techno. We prefer faster-paced and higher-energy music for dancing, we find it easier to move to.

Atmospheric Focus: Melodic techno tends to focus on creating a particular atmosphere and mood, which doesn’t always align with the party or dance floor atmosphere that some individuals seek when they want to dance and let loose.

Slower Tempo: Melodic techno often features a more relaxed and hypnotic tempo, which might not be suitable for high-energy or fast-paced dancing styles. The genre emphasizes creating an immersive and contemplative experience rather than encouraging constant movement.

Music provides catharsis for some individuals as it is a subjective experience, offering emotional release and a sense of identification and connection with the lyrics and melodies. It serves as a powerful tool for stress reduction, mood enhancement, and artistic expression, allowing people to subjectively channel their emotions into something meaningful and find solace. The neurological impact of music on the brain’s emotional and reward systems contributes to the subjective feelings of pleasure and satisfaction experienced by those who find catharsis in music.

We don’t feel catharsis or exuberance from the Melodic techno subgenre like we did with the similar progressive house from the 90s, or other more modern danceable subgenres.

We love Brian Eno’s ambient music, The KLF Chill Out, The Orb, Future Sounds of London to name a few. But we don’t listen to this on the dancefoor.

Lets hope this genre is over soon. Melodic techno doesn’t deserve to be called Techno.

4 responses to “Why Melodic techno is bad dance music”

  1. Ohh if you think that melodic techno is only about dance then you are so delusional! But if you asking questions such as why they are so popular is clear that you have no idea about them and just judging because you have created in your mind something different what of what music is and do. It not only about dance, it’s about opening your mind your soul your body and consciousness. Listening to music with your heard, let your emotions run, look back at your life and see what happened what can be changed. Listing to Tale of us is like meditating, finding and rediscovering yourself and seems that the way you writing you have no idea about it. Music it’s about simple song structure? Maybe you are a producer who cannot adopt and constantly making poor music and now judging others. I hope you get soon out of the scene because all you do is judging and judging and you must be very lazy. Yes people filming with their phones all the times at AL events and that’s indeed is very bad they should be dancing. But saying that “ Lets hope this genre is over soon‘’ showing the level you are and making you also an attention seekers. Melodic techno is what gets us going when we are at home. You can dance and enjoy music of melodic techno sets at home and emerge into yourself. You do not have to rave all the time outside you know. Let there be peace in your heard and stop judging. Everyone finds what they want. 

  2. Thank you for the well thought out feedback! We at peace of Mind really love to discuss music and other perspectives!

    We feel we are very experienced and maybe too opinionated, but we do feel having an opinion is valid

    We try to be delicate and we try to be a little cheeky but we find writing about musical tastes very difficult, so maybe it comes off as judgmental, abrasive or on a high horse

    sorry about that

    but in the article “Why Melodic techno is bad dance music” we try to focus on the effect the music has on the dancefloor experience maybe we should edit the article to be more clear about that

    • I’ll take melodic techno any day over pots and pans, air horn, whistles and substance less “tech house” sleep music.

  3. This genre is to dance throughout a sea of emotions, if you like high tempo genres with non sense like hardstyle is your choice. I don’t think there’s anything wrong in this genre. Of course if you attend to an event, the djs play a variety of genres in the same line such as house, afrohouse, indie dance, progressive house, but usually in the peak is melodic techno.

    You don’t need to be jumping 10 hours to have an exceptional experience.

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