SoundCloud’s listening trends show the fast evolution of dance music culture [IMS Business Report 2023]

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According to the 2023 IMS Business Report, the post-lockdown growth of SoundCloud’s listening trends provide valuable insights into how dance music culture is evolving and shifting to new territories.

SoundCloud has long been a popular platform for DJs, producers, and music enthusiasts to showcase their music and engage with their fans. As a community-driven platform, it is an ideal space for musicians to experiment with new sounds and styles, making it a hub for creativity and innovation in the music industry. SoundCloud’s listening trends reflect the resilience and creativity of dance music culture, particularly in the post-lockdown period.

After lockdowns were lifted worldwide, there was a noticeable trend towards harder and faster music genres. In particular, genres such as hard techno and industrial have seen a significant increase in both beats per minute (BPM) and plays on music streaming platforms.

According to the 2023 International Music Summit (IMS) Business Report, the BPM of these genres has increased by 13% since the beginning of 2018, and there has been a 144% increase in year-on-year (YoY) plays in 2022. The popularity of these music styles has resulted in an 89% increase in listeners. Countries such as Germany, Australia, the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, and Spain have shown the highest levels of consumption for these genres.

Based on the latest IMS Business Report,

Top 5 global dance / electronic genresTop 5 global scenes and dance / electronic communities
1. House1. UK / Irish Dance
2. Hardcore2. Hardstyle
3. Trance3. Vinahouse
4. Dubstep4. Hard/Industrial Techno
5. Techno5. Melodic House and Techno

Drum and bass has emerged as one of the most popular UK dance/electronic genres, with a significant increase in plays and search queries. The genre has seen a rise of over 59% in plays compared to 2021, with tracks from popular artists such as Venbee, Hedex, Bou, and Goddard topping the SoundCloud charts. This surge in popularity has led to drum and bass becoming the third most popular genre in the UK dance/electronic scene.

Despite a surge in the popularity of dance/electronic tracks from UK and Irish artists such as Ewan McVicker, Elisza Rose, Schak, Belters Only, and LF System, house music has managed to retain its number one position. According to the IMS Business Report, the increased interest in dance/electronic music has helped UK and Irish artists gain more recognition. However, house music continues to be the most dominant genre in the UK and worldwide.

Image Credits: © Rachit Tank |

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Rahul Kale
Rahul Kale
A designer with a love for problem-solving and a strong passion for dance music.


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