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Techno-DNB (also referred to as Techno Drum and Bass) is a subgenre of drum and bass that has emerged in the mid 2000s.


It is characterized by deliberately crossing borders between Techno and Drum and Bass, using counter-dynamic (call-and-response) percussion based halfbar loop patterns and stab constructions as the main musical theme. The sound aesthetic of many Techno-DNB tracks is quite far from what is commonly recognized as the characteristical Jungle / Drum and Bass sound. It's closest related subgenres are Neurofunk and Techstep. But unlike Neurofunk, in Techno-DNB the (commonly described) "midrange" synth sound (one of the key features of Neurofunk) has almost no importance and is seldomly used, beside the halfbar loop constructions. And unlike Techstep, it is very dynamic and not static at all in it's loop constructions, and does not try to sound distorted like Techstep used to.

Common features of contemporary Techno-DNB tracks are: Half bar looped percussion, 8-bar blueprint drum sequences, dark-sh or psychedelic-like melody based on stabs or bleeps, monotonious theme based on various samples that keeps on repeating sequentially through time.


The subgenre was, on the one hand, pioneered by some very few, very influential signature tracks in the early 2000s that would file under the contemporary definition of Techno-DNB in 2008, like "Vessel" by Universal Project or "Vandalism" by Fission. The first producers who fully concentrated on Techno-DNB were Kemal (who produced many Techno influenced tracks after leaving Renegade Hardware concentrating on a more stripped down experimental sound that had influences from Detroit Techno and the use of Techno production tools), Vector Burn& Pyro. They inspired a new generation of producers such as, Proket & Amex & Kaiza (back then as a duo) and others.

On the other hand, from the late 1990s on, a growing number of artists (Cause 4 Concern, Stakka & Skynet, Konflict and even more Kemal with his solo productions), Stratus, Gridlok, Rascal & Klone, Jarman aka Raiden, Bulletproof, Falcon (aka DJ Amir aka Tekken), also Bad Company (notably their "Digital Nation" LP), Black Sun Empire, STA, Paul B, SKC, Chris.SU, Dom & Roland, and others) produced and released many tracks in the then unclear, non-defined sub-generic field between Neurofunk and Techstep that experimented with subtle and technoid sound aesthetics, counter-dynamic and percussion-based loop constructions without the use of distorted midrange synths as lead sounds, rather using stabs and dark-ish, non-cheesy but trancey arpeggio melodies, often explicitly using Techno tracks as sources for samples and loops. These artists and their music did and does fit neither Neurofunk nor Techstep, they have rather been sometimes described as "technoid", but there had never been a proper, fitting genre name until the term "Techno-DNB" emerged in Mannheim (citation needed) in 2003. It was finally established (and explicitly accepted by the artists and labels) as the proper description of this small yet growing Drum and Bass subgenre which was more explicitly related to Schranz, having virtually abandoned melody, strings and chords as musical ingredients.

Early examples the genre first made thier way into circulation via a few pioneer labels such as Off-Key, Re-Con, Sinuous & Tilt-Recordings. As demand grew over time, more and more producers started to write Techno-DNB tracks which ultimatly led to more labels beginning to support and release them (M-Atome, Position Chrome, Freak Recordings, Leet Recordings, Subsistenz and others).



See also

External links

online community concentrating on this subgenre

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