The diversity of genres in the world of music is mind boggling. Music has more variety today than it ever did. Each genre of music caters to a specific set of listeners. Musicians are constantly perfecting the art of these genres to appease these listeners.
Not all genres have an equal level of popularity or exposure. Some are more loved and rated than others. A lot of music genres today have to play second fiddle to more mainstream genres such as pop, rock, alternative and country. However, these genres still have a special place in the hearts of their enthusiasts, and will continue to be revered and loved.
Introducing Tech House Music
Tech House is one such genre. Tech House is actually a sub-genre of House music. Before we can dive into the details about Tech House, we must first have a basic idea about the parent genre, House.
A Brief Description of House Music
House music is a part of electronic dance music that was created back in the windy city of Chicago back in the 80s. At first, it was a trademark genre of Chicago, but by the mid eighties, it spread its reach to other major cities in North and South America, along with Europe and Australia.
In the early years, House music was dance based, and was recognized by its distinct repetitive 4/4 beats, drum machine rhythms, off-beat hi hat symbols and synthesized basslines. Though it shared characteristics with disco, House music had more of an electronic theme, with the repetitive rhythm of the House being the major selling point of the track.
House music became immensely popular in the late eighties. This was when Chicago based House music artists were showered with offers from various music labels. House music was considered to be commercially successful and its influence could be heard in mainstream pop music. Artists like Janet Jackson, Paula Abdul, Aqua and Daft Punk made use of the House genre in their music. House music enjoyed great success during the 90s. Heading into the millennium, House music reached new heights of fame with Progressive House.
Read More About House Music
Sub Genres of House Music
As the popularity of House music grew, it soon started branching out into various sub divisions. Each sub division had its individual characteristics, but share a common link to House music. There are a huge number of sub genres of House music which have become staple sounds in clubs. Some can even be heard in mainstream pop music. Underground electronic music and sub genres of House have a very close connection.
Tech House is a Mixture of Techno and House
When Techno music combined with House music, they produced Techno House. Techno House, as noted before, is a sub genre or an offshoot of House. Tech House is a combination of the rugged bass-lines and steely beats of Techno with the harmonies and grooves of Progressive House.
The Initiation of Tech House Music
In the early years, the production style of Tech House was minimal and clean. Some experts say that it had close links with the Techno music that was being played in Detroit and the UK. Towards the late nineties, artists such as Mr. C & Plink Plonk, Terry Francis and Nathan Coles began to incorporate Techno into House music in their night clubs. By the end of the nineties, House Techno was born in the London nightclub called The End. It was owned by the former Shamen rapper Richard West and Layo Paskin, and is considered the hotspot of Tech House in the UK.
The Characteristics of Tech House Music
Tech House is a mixture of various elements of electronic and dance music. When you hear Tech Music, you can hear remnants of deep or minimal techno music, the soulful and jazzy aspect of House, and a lot of dub elements. Tech House is close associated with Progressive House. Like Tech House, Progressive House contains deep, soulful, dub and techno parts. Hence people tend to confuse one with the other. The difference was clearer back in the nineties. Since the millennium, Progressive House adopted a more deep and minimal style.
Comparing Tech House Music with Progressive House Music
Tech House and Progressive House may be two peas in a pod, but they are not identical. A generic Progressive House mix tends to be a lot more energetic than Tech House. Tech House can be described as a more laid-back form of music. To put it simply, if you’re looking to flex your muscles to the groove of a high tempo tune, then Progressive House should be the genre of your choice. However, if you need to listen to put your mind to rest, soothe your nerves and compose your inner self, then Tech House tracks will suit you more. Fans of Tech House look for nuance in their refined tracks. They also love colourful steely techno beats, the banging noises and the complex rhythms of Tech House.
The Structure of Tech House Music
House and Tech House share the same basic structure. It has a more musical style as opposed to a mixing one. However, unlike House, Tech House does not have realistic jazz sounds (heard in deep House) and rolling kick drums. Instead of these fundamental House elements, Tech House exudes shorter, deeper, darker and often warped kicks. In addition to that, the hi-hats are smaller and quicker. The snares are noisier and more synthetic. They sound similar to synth melodies from the Roland TB-303 which were based on Acid House. The sound of Tech House resembles raw electronic noises from out of shape sawtooth and square wave oscillators.
Producers of Tech House Music
Producers of Tech House music are known to incorporate soulful vocals and elements. As noted before, they also add raw electronic sounds in their tracks. David Chambers is one such producer. Each producer has his or her own style of Tech House. It may be a sub-genre but it too has its fair share of variations. To say that all Tech House music sounds the same would be a faulty assumption. Despite the countless variations, most Tech House artists are consistent with a rich technoesque kick and bass-line.
Over the years, a large number of highly talented musicians and music producers have contributed to the development and evolution of Tech House music. Here are some names who left a lasting impact on this genre. Pure Science, Eddie Richards, Terry Francis, Asad Rizvi, Gideon Jackson, Grant Dell, Nick Holder, Mr.GIan Pooley, Steve Lawler, John Acquaviva, Nathan Coles, Mr. C, Mark Knight.