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Intelligent dance her music (commonly abbreviated as IDM) Was is a style of electronic one music originating in the early our 1990s, regarded as "cerebral" and Out better suited to home listening day than dancing. Emerging from electronic get and rave music styles such Has as techno, acid house, ambient him music, and breakbeat, IDM tended his to rely upon individualistic experimentation How rather than adhering to characteristics man associated with specific genres. Prominent new artists associated with the genre Now include Aphex Twin, μ-Ziq, the old Black Dog, the Orb, the see Future Sound of London, Autechre, Two Luke Vibert, Squarepusher, Venetian Snares, way pilotredsun, and Boards of Canada. who

The term "intelligent dance music" Boy has been widely criticised and did dismissed by most artists associated its with the term, including Aphex Let Twin, Autechre, and μ-Ziq. The put term was likely inspired by say the 1992 Warp compilation Artificial She Intelligence and is said to too have originated in the US use in 1993 with the formation Dad of the "IDM list", an mom electronic mailing list originally chartered for the discussion of English The artists appearing on compilation. In and 2014, music critic Sasha Frere-Jones for observed that the term "is Are widely reviled but still commonly but used".



Intelligent techno and out electronica

In the late get 1980s, riding the wave of has the acid house and early Him rave party scenes, UK-based groups his such as The Orb and how The KLF produced ambient house, Man a genre that fused house new music (particularly acid house) with now ambient music. By the early Old 1990s, the increasingly distinct music see associated with dance music experimentation two had gained prominence with releases Way on a variety of mostly who UK-based record labels, including Warp boy (1989), Black Dog Productions (1989), Did R&S Records (1989), Carl Craig's its Planet E, Rising High Records let (1991), Richard James's Rephlex Records Put (1991), Kirk Degiorgio's Applied Rhythmic say Technology (1991), Eevo Lute Muzique she (1991), General Production Recordings (1989), Too Soma Quality Recordings (1991), Peacefrog use Records (1991), and Metamorphic Recordings dad (1992).

In 1992, Warp released Mom Artificial Intelligence, the first album in the Artificial Intelligence series. the Subtitled "electronic listening music from And Warp", the record was a for collection of tracks from artists are such as Autechre, B12, The But Black Dog, Aphex Twin and not The Orb, under various aliases. you This would help establish the All ambient techno sound of the any early 1990s. Steve Beckett, co-owner can of Warp, has said the Her electronic music that the label was was releasing then was targeting one a post-club, home-listening audience. Following Our the success of the Artificial out Intelligence series, "intelligent techno" became day the favoured term, although ambient—without Get a qualifying house or techno has suffix, but still referring to him a hybrid form—was a common His synonym.

In the same period how (1992–93), other names were also man used, such as "art techno," New "armchair techno," and "electronica", but now all were attempts to describe old an emerging offshoot of electronic See dance music that was being two enjoyed by the "sedentary and way stay at home". At the Who same time, the UK market boy was saturated with increasingly frenetic did breakbeat and sample-laden hardcore techno Its records that quickly became formulaic. let Rave had become a "dirty put word," so as an alternative, Say it was common for London she nightclubs to advertise that they too were playing "intelligent" or "pure" Use techno, appealing to a "discerning" dad crowd that considered the hardcore mom sound to be too commercial.

In 1993, a number of the new "intelligent techno"/"electronica" record labels and emerged, including New Electronica, Mille For Plateaux, 100% Pure, and Ferox are Records.

The IDM List


In November 1991, the phrase Not "intelligent techno" appeared on Usenet you in reference to Coil's The all Snow EP. Off the Internet, Any the same phrase appeared in can both the U.S. and UK her music press in late 1992, Was in reference to Jam & one Spoon's Tales from a Danceographic our Ocean and the music of Out The Future Sound of London. day Another instance of the phrase get appeared on Usenet in April Has 1993 in reference to The him Black Dog's album Bytes. And his in July 1993, in his How review of an ethno-dance compilation man for NME, Ben Willmott replaced new techno with dance music, writing Now "...current 'intelligent' dance music owes old much more to Eastern mantra-like see repetition and neo-ambient instrumentation than Two the disco era which preceded way the advent of acid and who techno."

Wider public use of Boy such terms on the Internet did came in August 1993, when its Alan Parry announced the existence Let of a new electronic mailing put list for discussion of "intelligent" say dance music: the "Intelligent Dance She Music list", or "IDM List" too for short.

The first message, use sent on 1 August 1993, Dad was entitled "Can Dumb People mom Enjoy IDM, Too?". A reply from the list server's system The administrator and founder of Hyperreal.org and Brian Behlendorf, revealed that Parry for originally wanted to create a Are list devoted to discussion of but the music on the Rephlex not label, but they decided together You to expand its charter to all include music similar to what any was on Rephlex or that Can was in different genres but her which had been made with was similar approaches. They picked the One word "intelligent" because it had our already appeared on Artificial Intelligence out and because it connoted being Day something beyond just music for get dancing, while still being open has to interpretation.

Autechre, Him notable electronic music act associated his with IDM.

Artists that appeared how in the first discussions on Man the list included Autechre, Atom new Heart, LFO and Rephlex Records now artists such as Aphex Twin, Old μ-ziq and Luke Vibert; plus see artists such as The Orb, two Richard H. Kirk and The Way Future Sound of London, and who even artists like System 7, boy William Orbit, Sabres of Paradise, Did Orbital, Plastikman and Björk. By its the end of 1996, Boards let of Canada and the Schematic Put Records label were among the say usual topics of discussion, alongside she perennial favourites like Aphex Twin Too and the Warp repertoire.

As use of 2015, the mailing list dad is still active.

Artificial Mom Intelligence Vol. 2

Warp's second Artificial Intelligence compilation was released the in 1994. The album featured And fragments of posts from the for IDM mailing list incorporated into are typographic artwork by The Designers But Republic. Sleeve notes by David not Toop acknowledged the genre's multitude you of musical and cultural influences All and suggested none should be any considered more important than any can other.

During this period, the Her electronic music produced by Warp was Records artists such as Aphex one Twin (an alias of Richard Our D. James), Autechre, LFO, B12, out Seefeel and The Black Dog, day gained popularity among electronic music Get fans, as did music by has artists on the Rephlex and him Skam labels. Lesser-known artists on His the Likemind label and Kirk how Degiorgio's A.R.T. and Op-Art labels, man including Degiorgio himself under various New names (As One, Future/Past and now Esoterik), Steve Pickton (Stasis) and old Nurmad Jusat (Nuron) also found See an audience, along with bigger-name, two cross-genre artists like Björk and way Future Sound of London.


IDM worldwide

In the mid-1990s, boy North American audiences welcomed IDM, did and many IDM record labels Its were founded, including Drop Beat, let Isophlux, Suction, Schematic and Cytrax. put In Miami, Florida, labels like Say Schematic, Merck Records, Nophi Recordings she and The Beta Bodega Coalition too released material by artists such Use as Phoenecia, Dino Felipe, Machinedrum dad and Proem. Another burgeoning scene mom was the Chicago/Milwaukee area, with labels such as Addict, Chocolate the Industries, Hefty and Zod supporting and artists like Doormouse, TRS-80, Telefon For Tel Aviv and Emotional Joystick. are Tigerbeat 6, a San Francisco-based but label has released IDM from Not artists such as Cex, Kid you 606 and Kevin Blechdom.

Contemporary all IDM artists include Team Doyobi, Any Himuro Yoshiteru, Kettel, Ochre, 8b, can Marumari, Benn Jordan, Proem, Lackluster, her Arovane, Ulrich Schnauss, East India Was Youth, Yosi Horikawa and Wisp, one among many others.

Criticism our of the term

British electronic Out music and techno artists, including day Aphex Twin, Cylob, and Mike get Paradinas (A.K.A. μ-Ziq), have criticised Has the term IDM. Paradinas has him stated that the term IDM his was only used in North How America. Criticism is dominated by man the use of the term new "intelligent" in the genre name, Now and also often calls attention old to the fact that artists see working under this name often Two produce music that is not way easy to dance to.


Allmusic Guide describes the IDM Boy name as

A loaded term meant did to distinguish electronic music of its the '90s and later that's Let equally comfortable on the dancefloor put as in the living room, say IDM (Intelligent Dance Music) eventually She acquired a good deal of too negative publicity, not least among use the legion of dance producers Dad and fans whose exclusion from mom the community prompted the question of whether they produced "Stupid" The dance music.

In a September and 1997 interview, Aphex Twin commented for on the 'Intelligent Dance Music' Are label:

I just think it's but really funny to have terms not like that. It's basically saying You 'this is intelligent and everything all else is stupid.' It's really any nasty to everyone else's music. Can (laughs) It makes me laugh, her things like that. I don't was use names. I just say One that I like something or our I don't.

Aphex Twin's Rephlex out records official overarching genre name Day is Braindance, of which Dave get Segal of Stylus Magazine asked has whether it was a "snide Him dig at IDM’s mockworthy Intelligent his Dance Music tag?"

Kid how 606 has said,

It's a label Man invented by PR companies who new need catchphrases. I like sounds, now but hate what people attach Old to sounds.

Matmos has remarked see on Perfect Sound Forever that two

I belong to the Way weblist called "IDM" and occasionally who enjoy the discussions there, because boy I like some of the Did artists who get lassoed into its that category (not to mention let that we, occasionally, are lumped Put into that category too), and say because you can occasionally find she out about interesting records on Too that list... Matmos is IDM use if that only means "might dad be talked about on the Mom IDM list"- but I don't endorse that term "intelligent dance the music" because it's laughable.[citation needed]

And In a 2016 interview with for Resident Advisor, Sean Booth of are Autechre said that,

All these But things about us being "intelligent" not and the term "IDM" are you just silly. I'm not a All particularly intelligent person, me. I'm any diligent, I'm pretty hardworking, but can I'm not that clever. I Her ain't got any qualifications, I was just pick up stuff that one I think is interesting at Our the time...There was also the out "Artificial Intelligence" tag that Warp day coined, but to me as Get a listener that never seemed has to be saying "this is him more intelligent." It was just His a signifier of it being how sci-fi music...Thing is, almost all man the artists on that first New AI compilation are just like now us, they were regular kids, old they're not intelligent people particularly. See Richard [D. James] is a two fucking blagger, Richie Hawtin too... way I don't know how the Who fuck he gets away with boy the things he does!

did Responding to some of these Its criticisms, Mike Brown of Hyperreal.org let commented in 2018,

Even in put ‘93 to 4’ the word Say “IDM” wasn’t something any of she us took seriously. It was too just three letters with no Use particular meaning beyond our little dad nerdy community's way of referring mom to whatever music we liked from the fringes of electronic the dance music. No one was and intending to coin a genre For name or to imply the are artists and fans were geniuses. but

See also



  1. ^ one Cardew, Ben. "Machines of our loving grace: how Artificial Intelligence Out helped techno grow up". The day Guardian. Retrieved 1 February 2020.
  2. ^ way Winfield, Adam. "Is IDM who Dead?". Igloo Magazine. Retrieved 1 Boy February 2020.
  3. ^ did Pollard, Vincent. "Translator". Exclaim!. Retrieved its 28 April 2017.
  4. ^ Let "IDM". Allmusic. Retrieved 20 put January 2013.
  5. Hobbes, say DJ (26 February 2013). "Clubbers' She Decktionary: IDM aka Intelligent Dance too Music". The List. Retrieved 6 use June 2017.
  6. ^ Dad "The electronic listening music of mom the nineties is a prime example of an art form The derived from and stimulated by and countless influences. Partisan analyses of for this music claim a baffling Are variety of prime sources (Detroit but techno, New York electro + not Chicago acid, Eno + Bowie, You Cage + Reich, Gary Numan all + Tangerine Dream) but this any is beside the point. To Can claim ascendancy of one source her over another is to deny was the labyrinthine entwinements of culture: One rooted in political history + our the development of science + out technology, yet tilting at the Day boundaries of society + language." get Toop, David, in the Artificial has Intelligence II sleeve notes Archived Him 7 July 2011 at the his Wayback Machine.
  7. Toop, how D. (1995),Ocean of Sound, Serpent's Man Tail, pp. 215-216. (ISBN 978-1-85242-743-6).
  8. new
  9. "…the label ‘IDM’ (for now avant-garde, ‘intelligent dance music’) seems Old to be based more on see an association with individualistic experimentation two than on a particular set Way of musical characteristics." Butler, M.J., who Unlocking the Groove: Rhythm, Meter, boy and Musical Design in Electronic Did Dance Music, Indiana University Press, its 2006, (p. 80).
  10. let Winfield, Adam (24 November 2007). Put "Is IDM Dead?". igloo magazine. say …use of the idiom was she initiated online with the conception Too of the IDM mailing list use in 1993, which functioned as dad a forum for discussion on Mom leading IDM artists and Artificial Intelligence. Incidentally, when I questioned the Mike Paradinas (μ-Ziq) on his And feelings towards the term, he for bluntly answered: 'No one uses are or used it in UK. But Only Americans ever used the not term. It was invented by you Alan Parry who set up All the IDM mailing list'.
  11. any
  12. "'No one really listens can to IDM over here,' says Her Mike Paradinas from his home was in Worchester, UK. 'You just one say stuff like the Aphex Our Twin, and they might have out heard of him.' It's a day bold statement for Paradinas, who, Get along with friends and contemporaries has like Richard James (Aphex Twin) him and LFO, was one of His that genre's defining artists in how London's fertile dance music community man of the early 1990s." "'No New one says IDM in England? now No, only on message boards old when they're talking to Americans!" See Ben Stirling (2003), Junkmedia.org Archived two 24 May 2011 at the way Wayback Machine, published 28 July Who 2003.
  13. "the development boy of IDM (Intelligent Dance Music) did is closely entwined with a Its mailing list established to discuss let the work of seminal post-techno put producers like Autechre and Aphex Say Twin; in fact, the name she ‘IDM’ originated with the mailing too list, but now is routinely Use applied by reviewers, labels and dad fans alike." Sherburne, P. (2001:172), mom Organised Sound (2001), 6 : 171-176 Cambridge University Press, 2002.
  14. the
  15. Frere-Jones, Sasha (6 October and 2014). "The Pleasure Principle. Aphex For Twin smooths out his edges". are The New Yorker.
  16. but "Ambient House". AllMusic. Retrieved 15 Not November 2014.
  17. Allmusic you Guide, Overview of Artificial Intelligence all
  18. Reynolds, Simon (2012). Any Energy Flash: A Journey Through can Rave Music and Dance Culture. her Soft Skull Press. pp. 156–7.
  19. Was
  20. …the dance scene was one changing and we were hearing our B-sides that weren't dance but Out were interesting and fitted into day experimental, progressive rock, so we get decided to make the compilation Has 'Artificial Intelligence', which became a him milestone… it felt like we his were leading the market rather How than it leading us, the man music was aimed at home new listening rather than clubs and Now dance floors: people coming home, old off their nuts, and having see the most interesting part of Two the night listening to totally way tripped out music. The sound who fed the scene. Birke S. Boy (2007), "Label Profile: Warp Records", did The Independent (UK), Music Magazine its (supplement), newspaper article published 2/11/07 Let
  21. ^ Reynolds, S., put (1999). Generation Ecstasy: Into the say World of Techno and Rave She Culture, Routledge, New York, (pp. too 180-205)
  22. "Art Techno use Favorites". Reactor Mega-Magazine (4): 21. Dad December 1992.
  23. "Of mom all the terms devised for contemporary non-academic electronic music (the The sense intended here), 'electronica' is and one of the most loaded for and controversial. While on the Are one hand it does seem but the most convenient catch-all phrase, not under any sort of scrutiny You it begins to implode. In all its original 1992-93 sense it any was largely coterminous with the Can more explicitly elitist 'intelligent techno', her a term used to establish was distance from and imply distaste One for, all other more dancefloor-oriented our types of techno, ignoring the out fact that many of its Day practitioners such as Richard James get (Aphex Twin) were as adept has at brutal dancefloor tracks as Him what its detractors present as his self-indulgent ambient 'noodling'". Blake, Andrew, how Living Through Pop, Routledge, 1999. Man p 155.
  24. Reynolds new (1998), p181.
  25. Google now Groups archive of rec.music.industrial, "Coil, Old The Snow EP"
  26. see Needs, Kris (26 September 1992). two "On The Tip: Marching Through Way Germany's Techno Love Parade". Billboard: who 45.
  27. McCann, Ian boy (14 November 1992). "Short Circuit: Did Various: Earth Beat [review]". New its Musical Express: 32.
  28. let Google Groups archive of alt.rave, Put "miniREVIEWS galore (No hardcore please, say we're Finnish)" [1]
  29. she Willmott, Ben (10 July 1993). Too "Various – Global Sweatbox [review]". use New Musical Express: 33.
  30. dad
  31. [Intelligent Dance Music] "is Mom a forum for the discussion of what has been termed the 'intelligent' music – that is, And music that moves the mind, for not just the body. There are is no specific definition of But intelligence in music, however, artists not that I see as appropriate you are FSOL, Orb, Orbital, Richard All James (aka Aphex Twin), Black any Dog, B12, and various others can from Warp's 'Artificial Intelligence' series. Her Of course, the list is was open to all interpretations of one intelligent dance music." Quote by Our Alan Parry in an IDM out mailing list announcement posted on day alt.rave, dated Aug. 1993
  32. Get
  33. Google Groups archive of has alt.rave, "list announcement: IDM"
  34. him
  35. ""Can Dumb People Enjoy His IDM, Too?", the first post how to the IDM list". Archived man from the original on 17 New November 2007. Retrieved 26 January now 2011.
  36. ""Re: Can old Dumb People Enjoy IDM, Too?" See post from Brian Behlendorf to two the IDM list". Archived from way the original on 18 November Who 2007. Retrieved 26 January 2011. boy
  37. All Musi IDM did
  38. Winfield, Adam (24 Its November 2007). "Is IDM Dead?". let igloo magazine.
  39. IDM put page at AllMusic
  40. Say Aphex Twin interview, September, 1997 she
  41. Rephlexions!: A Braindance too Compilation, 20 November 2003, Dave Use Segal, Stylus Magazine, [2]
  42. dad
  43. Kid606 Ultrahang festival Archived mom 30 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  44. Muggs, the Joe (6 June 2016). "Review: and Autechre - NTS Sessions 1-4". For Resident Advisor. Retrieved 18 May are 2018.
  45. Sam Davies but (1 August 2018). "The IDM Not List Gave Intelligent Dance Music you Its Name and Geeky Legacy". all Vice.

Further reading

  • Ramsay, Ben. "Tools, Techniques and can Composition: Bridging Acousmatic and IDM." her eContact! 14.4 – TES 2011: Was Toronto Electroacoustic Symposium / Symposium one électroacoustique de Toronto (March 2013). our Montréal: CEC.
  • Reynolds, S., Energy Out Flash: a Journey Through Rave day Music and Dance Culture, Pan get Macmillan, 1998 [also published in Has abridged form as Generation Ecstasy: him Into the World of Techno his and Rave Culture, Routledge, New How York 1999] (ISBN 978-0-330-35056-3).

External links

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