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Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Melodic Techno

The sound of the island.

Ibiza is known for its dance music the world over, but that is an umbrella term for various different styles. Our series on the genres of music found on the island helps identify the parties, clubs and DJs best suited to your tastes.

To kick-off 2023, we're first looking at a genre that has grown exponentially in recent years: Melodic Techno.


If you're none-the-wiser, he's our introductory playlist to Melodic Techno.

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Melodic Techno

As the name implies, Melodic Techno is a derivation of Techno music. Well... kind of. That conversation with a music snob is probably best avoided. The "melodic" prefix is also a bit misleading - can't all music be argued to be melodic? Hmmm.

Let's not get too precious about the whole thing. It's not like it's the first silly genre name to do the rounds and it certainly won't be the last. But what actually is it?

Melodic Techno is an arpeggiated form of dance music that's very euphoric.

Rarely breaching the 115 to 125 bpm range, Melodic Techno is probably best described as a recipe as opposed to a single ingredient. That's to say, a set could be described as Melodic Techno, but to describe individual tracks as such is a bit disingenuous - though it does happen.

Very often it's an atmospheric mix of Techno and Deep House. Lots of the artists who fall under the banner were previously associated with one of the two camps. Tale Of Us are probably the biggest champions of the movement.

Masters of melody: Karm and Matteo form Afterlife duo Tale Of Us

Other DJ/producers who work in the Melodic Techno arena alongside Tale Of Us, are ARTBAT, Mind Against, Kölsch and DJ Tennis. Most, if not all, appear at Afterlife. Whilst you will certainly hear Melodic Techno elsewhere, if you love the sound then Afterlife is practically untouchable.

Any old guard reading this will probably have a wry smile by now. For all intents and purposes, what is now referred to as Melodic Techno is just Progressive House repackaged! The tag became unfashionable when the first wave of EDM producers mutinied the name.

Confused? Dance music is a political minefield, but we're about to muddy the waters a bit more...


Trance reborn?

Although it was hugely popular in the 2000s and still retains pockets of support, Trance has been on a downward trajectory for the last few decades. Clearly, music marketed as Melodic Techno is a lot slower than traditional Trance music, but there are a lot of parallels.

You will encounter lots of the Trance classics remixed in this modern way played at Afterlife, for example. Often, these get the biggest crowd reaction of the night. Maybe we shouldn't be so quick to write off Trance?

This link has led to Melodic Techno often being referred to as "Man-Trance" or "Neo-Trance". It's Trance, just a little more grown-up and higher-brow.

The current flows both ways though. As much as Techno acts have been quick to cash in on the Trance nostalgia, Trance DJs have found themselves incorporating Melodic Techno into their sets. This all furthers the point that all electronic music is inter-connected and overlaps.

The tribal nature of dance music is nothing new, but it's interesting to see what's regarded as cool and what isn't from generation to generation. No doubt the landscape will change again in ten years' time. What will the Ibiza class of 2033 be dancing to?

Cream ran from 1996 to 2017 when Trance was king

Maybe we'll have come full circle and Trance will once again reign supreme like it did in 2001?


Find here our other music guides:

Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Techno
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Minimal music
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... House music
Tech House
- Deep House
- Afro House
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Disco
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... EDM
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Reggaeton
Ibiza Virgins' Guide to... Garage


Read more...

This article is part of our Ibiza Virgins' Guides, packed full of information on how to get the most out of your stay on Ibiza. Check them out.

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