Evolution of Eurodance

History

 

By the late 1980s, clubs and airwaves across Europe were soaking up Chicago house, acid house and techno. With so many styles competing for attention, a new genre quickly emerged: eurodance. Kicking off the eurodance movement was an Italian group called Black Box with their 1989 hit “Ride on Time”. Belgian music project Technotronik followed later that year with their hit “Pump Up the Jam”. By the time a SNAP! released “The Power” to celebrate the demolition of the Berlin Wall, eurodance had taken over. In the mid-90s, eurodance split off into bubblegum dance and UK hardhouse and, by 2001, had gone extinct.

 

Influences

 

Eurodance is a melting pot of catchy vocal hooks, rap sections, synth riffs, samples and a hard hitting four-on-the-floor beat. Traces of earlier house styles like Chicago and acid house as well as techno can all be found in eurodance music.

 

Sound

 

Eurodance is defined by its heavy use of the Korg M1 keyboard, echoed vocals, relatively faster tempo, and, most importantly, its positive energy. If there’s one genre of house music that seems like it was designed in a lab to be a dance floor hit, it would be eurodance.

 

 

Black Box - "Ride on Time"

Italy, 1989

 

Black Box defines establishes the role of piano house in eurodance with "Ride on Time".

 

 

SNAP! - "Rhythm is a Dancer"

Frankfurt, 1992

 

SNAP! leads the eurodance revolution with "Rhythm is a Dancer".

 

 

Haddaway - "What Is Love"

Cologne, 1993

 

Haddaway solidifies eurodance’s dominant sound with "What is Love?"

 

 

Culture Beat - "Mr. Vain"

Frankfurt, 1993

 

Culture Beat brings techno and hip house to eurodance with "Mr. Vain".

 

 

2 Unlimited - "No Limit"

Amsterdam, 1993

 

2 Unlimited releases “No Limit”, splicing techno with eurodance and hinting at a Dirty Dutch sound that would show up in later in Dutch house.

 

 

La Bouche - "Be My Lover"

Frankfurt, 1995

 

Smash hit "Be My Lover" by La Bouche marks the end of eurodance as bubblegum dance and progressive house take over.

 

 

Aqua - "Barbie Girl"

Copenhagen, 1997

 

Eurodance takes a weird turn, morphing into bubblegum dance/pop with hits like Aqua's "Barbie Girl".

 

 

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