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- 1+ 162- 63v
Germany's Kraftwerk is arguably among the very best when it comes to influential electronic music. With a signature style that also includes some pretty awesome hooks, Kraftwerk remains a leader in the genre, influencing everyone from David Bowie to Afrika Bambaataa.
- 2+ 150- 63v
Depeche Mode deserves a place on any list that includes pioneers of electronic music, particularly electro-pop. This British band, fronted by the brilliant David Gahan, has recorded heavily synthesized tunes that range from the upbeat (early Depeche) to the brooding and dark (later years). Depeche remains hugely popular today. Bands like The Crystal Method cite Depeche Mode as a massive influence.
- 3+ 167- 83v
The Grammy Award-winning French duo Daft Punk collaborate to create innovative and fascinating electronic music that not only thrills critics, but also fans. Daft Punk is still collaborating with mainstream artists like Kanye West and the duo also composed the movie soundtrack for the 2010 film "Tron: Legacy." If you ever get the opportunity to check out a Daft Punk live show, do it. Move Heaven and Earth to get there - you won't be disappointed!
- 4+ 106- 41
Peer Van Mladen Added by: predragv
- 5+ 102- 46v
The British alternative/electronic band New Order burst onto the scene in the 1980s, putting out a series of mainstream hit songs that remain a staple on radio today. New Order became extremely influential - the band's unique blend of electronic dance and new wave music spawned a host of other acts. New Order was also part of the alt dance supergroup Electronic, which featured members (or former members) of the Pet Shop Boys, the Smiths, and - lo and behold - a former member of Kraftwerk.
- 6+ 97- 46v
The British electronic group The Prodigy was extremely influential in the genre, particularly in the so-called "big beat" area of music. With heavy back beats and rhythm similar to techno, The Prodigy managed to influence while enjoying a great deal of mainstream popularity. Listen to The Prodigy and you'll hear everything from rave music to industrial to rock and punk and, of course, electronica.
- 7+ 73- 37v
The electronic musician Aphex Twin (aka Richard David James), is a tremendously successful contemporary electronic musician. Influences from Kraftwerk to Tangerine Dream can easily be heard in the music, which runs the gamut from ambient techno to trance and, of course, electronica.
- 8+ 67- 32v
Omitting Jean-Michel Jarre from any list involving the most influential music pioneers would simply be a crime of epic proportions. This French composer and musician has put out decades of incredible, melodic electronic music. He's also given stunning concert performances, particularly in the 1970s (where he achieved mainstream success).
- 9+ 83- 46
- 10+ 76- 41v
No list of influential electronic music pioneers would be complete without the great Brian Eno and his brilliant ambient music. Eno's solo work (after Roxy Music) is considered by many to be a positively dazzling example of ambient music. Eno's influences run deep - Aphex Twin comes to mind immediately.
- 11+ 75- 41v
Massive Attack is a true pioneer in the field of "trip hop," offering up a remarkable blend of trippy, hypnotic music blended with dub and even dramatic melodies to fans for decades now. Massive Attack's music has influenced a number of modern electronic artists, including Beth Orton, Portishead and Sneaker Pimps.
- 12+ 64- 32
- 13+ 63- 43v
Arguably, one of the most modern influential electronic pioneers in music is Moby. This DJ, songwriter and composer does it all. Moby burst on the scene in the early 1990s, with his ambient electronica music and upbeat tunes. Moby also achieved a great deal of mainstream success, with his 1999 album 'Play.' Love him or hate him, there's no denying his importance in electronic music today.
- 14+ 49- 30
- 15+ 45- 29v
The British electronic duo Underworld might be included on genre fans' "best of" list. Musicians Rick Smith and Karl Hyde, together with DJ Darren Emerson, created a unique blend of techno, trance and pop music (heavy on the techno).
- 16+ 43- 30
The German electronic music group Tangerine Dream definitely deserves a spot on any list of the most influential electronic music pioneers. The band, which formed in the late-1960s, embraced the digital technology in the 1980s, which allowed them to combine stunningly unique sounds via synthesizer. Today, Tangerine Dream's influences can be heard in music from Radiohead to DJ Shadow and Art of Noise.
- 17+ 38- 30v
The British electronic group The Orb is virtually synonymous with ambient house music. The band's oft meandering tunes are without question totally trippy - and worth a listen, if you want to hear the beginnings of the ambient house genre (and totally chill out after being up all night).
- 18+ 51- 49
Trent Reznor could be considered a pioneer in the world of electronic music. The Nine Inch Nails singer first made a name for himself with the band's industrial rock sound - today, Reznor is branching out. His music now runs the gamut from dark ambient to electronica. Most recently, Reznor's been busy with movie soundtracks. His collaboration on the dark ambient 'The Social Network' soundtrack, with fellow British musician Atticus Ross, earned him an Oscar for Best Original Score. Now, he's working again on a soundtrack for a David Fincher movie: 'The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.' He's definitely a visionary worth watching for years to come.
- 19+ 37- 35v
Vangelis is a renowned Greek composer whose five decades of music has no doubt influenced scores of electronic artists over the years. While he's well-known for composing the score for the 1981 movie 'Chariots of Fire' (yes, he won an Oscar for that), Vangelis' music is much more than one composition. His music is heavily synthesized, definitely ambient and very, very progressive. Vangelis may be one of the fathers of electronic music. Try arguing it - you'll likely lose.
- 20+ 37- 36v
Bronx DJ Afrika Bambaataa (Kevin Donovan) is arguably among the best in his field. Some consider him the father of electro funk and there's no question that his tunes helped to give birth to hip hop. In the early 80s, Bambaata combined unique sounds from German-influenced electronica with his own innovative style, giving birth to electro funk. Not sold? Check out the song 'Planet Rock.' Any doubt about his influence? No. His influence can be heard in the music of everyone from Leftfield to Rage Against the Machine.