image of a beatport screen with UM Records releases featured

What is Tech House?


Tech house is a subgenre of house music that combines elements of techno with house. The term tech house developed as a shorthand record store name for the genre. The sound is identified by steely beats, driving harmonies and progressive house grooves.


Where did tech house come from?

The genre came to life in the 1990s in England around club nights such as The Drop run by the former Shamen rapper Mr C and Wiggle run by Terry Francis and Nathan Coles. Other DJs and artists associated with the sound at that time included Charles Webster, Bushwacka!, Cuartero, Dave Angel, Herbert, Funk D'Void, Ian O'Brien, Derrick Carter and Stacey Pullen. By the late 90s, London nightclub The End, owned by Mr C and Layo Paskin, was considered the home of tech house in the UK.


DJ/producers like Anja Schneider,, Rodriguez Jr., Shlomi Aber, Marc Scholl, Tom Flynn, Steve Bug, and Timo Garcia kept the scene moving in the 2000s, as superstars of the scene started to emerge by the end of the decade. The label Crosstown Rebels seemed to have one foot in tech house since its inception in the early ‘00s and is one of the most elastic imprints to really champion the sound.


What are the best tech house record label?

Huge labels operate in the tech house space including Toolroom Records, Hot Creations, CR2 Records, Diertybird, DFTD and more.


What bpm is tech house?

Tech House plays around 120-130 bpm so in a similar range to other genres around it such as deep house, but much slower than Afro House for instance.


What is the difference between tech house and techno?

Techno is based on 4/4 rhythm. Over four beats, you get four kicks and four bass. House is 3/4 rhythm, so over four kicks, you have three bass. Tech House is 1,5/2 or half a House loop.


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image of a beatport screen with UM Records releases featured
image of a beatport screen with UM Records releases featured
image of a beatport screen with UM Records releases featured

What is Beatport?


Beatport remains the biggest retail site for dance music, despite recent difficulties. Founded in 2004 until streaming took off via Spotify it was the prime source to hear and buy dance music and was said to account for as much as 70% of all dance music sales globally. But since its financial collapse in 2017 the site has changed a few things and refocussed on added revenues.


Its vision as quoted on the website is “Beatport provides the global DJ community access to a vast catalogue of high quality, expertly curated digital music from the industry's leading artists and labels. Our knowledge of, and passion for, DJ culture results in a constantly evolving and dynamic experience for our unique ecosystem. Created by DJs, for DJs, Beatport doesn’t just serve DJ culture, it defines it.”


Personally I know like all sites, feature placement can make a huge difference to a release, and when I start UM Records I had this dreamy notion that good music was all that it took to get there - wrong! And so it’s continuing in the new world of Beatport.


What is Beatport Hype?

Beatport pitches its ‘Hype’ product as “the ultimate promotional platform, with a suite of custom features to take your label to the next level.” Suggesting for the $9.99 a month subscription fee your label will benefit from a 70% increase in track sales. Dedicated Hype Charts and the ‘opportunity’ to be featured in high-visibility contexts.


I have read online the Hype Chart tracks selected are picked by the editorial team to be fair so maybe I am being a little negative - of the homepage featured tracks within the deep house genre - 3 of the 8 were Hype tracks for reference on cut through.


The package offers homepage banners, and tiles, access to the Hype Charts and if your release drives enough sales to reach the Beatport Top 100 you’ll feature in both charts - let’s forget the quality fo the music - money talks on Beatport.


Don’t get me wrong, Traxsource is just as ‘commercially available’ - a track sitting on top spot on Traxsource Pre-Orders will not get feature placement unless you’ve paid for the additional promotional services they offer or your distributor does on their behalf. Beatport too offers access to media partners, social media campaigns and post lights on Hype artists.


With over 25,000 new tracks delivered to Beatport every week, gaining attention is a competitive business - and distributors such as Symphonic as in favour of Beatport Hype to help smaller, boutique labels grow their audiences.


What is Beatportal?

What use to be the name of Beatport’s own distribution service has become a blog with news, articles and features - all helping drive organic search results for the platform in an era that Spotify, RA and Soundcloud all perform better. At a quick look around there’s a good mix of features and genres covered - although frequent advertising for Beatport Link (read more here) did get a little annoying. I didn’t see much connection to the Hype offering though - a missed opportunity for sure!


What are Beatport DJ Charts?

DJ charts on Beatport are perhaps my favourite part of the site - giving you an insight on what your favourite DJs and Producers are picking and playing right now - although I do get annoyed when a producer has a chart full of their own tracks! To create charts you’ll need a DJ profile on the site then simply follow the My Charts section.


Personally both Beatport and Traxsource charts are great for the label - it gives you something other than sales links to use as content on social media and shows new listeners who listens and plays the tracks on the label. It might be just me, but I feel Traxsource Charts are more common these days - that’s certainly been the case in 2020 for UM Records - I’m not sure we’ve been charted once on Beatport, but many times on Traxsource.


What is Beatport Loopcloud?

Beatport Loopcloud is a partnership between the two sites offering sample packs to producers for creating new music. The Loopcloud app and plugins lets producers slice, edit and pitch millions of samples.


What is Beatport Stems?

A Stem file is an open, multi-channel audio file that contains a track split into four musical elements—bass, drums, vocals, and melody. With each element available independently as a DJ you can mix it live and as a producers take elements and reimagine a track, create acapellas of mash-ups.


What is the Beatport App?

Well firstly it’s not an app - the site just directs you to add the website to your Home Screen on your phone and it’ll detect if you’re viewing it on a phone of the device.


image of a beatport screen with UM Records releases featured
image of a beatport screen with UM Records releases featured
image of a beatport screen with UM Records releases featured