The Belleville Three performing at the Detroit Masonic Temple in 2017. From left to right: Juan Atkins, Kevin Saunderson, and Derrick May
Roland TB-303: The bass line synthesizer that was used prominently in acid house.
The original Tresor club (1991–2005)
Doorway to Dorian Gray in Frankfurt, famed for the Technoclub dance event by Talla 2XLC
Tanith in 1994
Robert Hood, techno minimalist, in 2009
A sound system at Czechtek 2004
Underworld during a live performance
Example of a professional production environment
The Roland TR-808 was, according to Derrick May, the preferred drum machine during the early years of techno.
Berlin's Berghain techno club

Use of the term "techno" to refer to a type of electronic music originated in Germany in the early 1980s.

- Techno

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Kraftwerk (, "power station") are a German band formed in Düsseldorf in 1969 by Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider.

Kraftwerk performing in Kyiv, in 2008
Concert in Zürich, 1976
In Stockholm, February 2004
Early 1970s vocoder, custom built for Kraftwerk

The band's work has influenced a diverse range of artists and many genres of modern music, including synth-pop, hip hop, post-punk, techno, house music, ambient, and club music.

Trance music

Trance Energy Festival at Utrecht
Psychedelic trance culture of KaZantip in 2006, with decorations commonplace at trance parties.
Roland JP-8000, a synthesizer famous for its incorporation of the supersaw waveform
DJ Tiesto playing progressive trance music in Bangkok, Thailand.
Sunburn Music Festival in Candolim, Goa.
Clubbers at Gatecrasher on 16 April 2006
Sensation White at Amsterdam Arena 2006

Trance is a genre of electronic dance music that emerged from the British new-age music scene and the early 1990s German techno and hardcore scenes.

Derrick May (musician)

Electronic musician from Belleville, Michigan, United States.

Derrick May

May is credited with pioneering techno music in the 1980s along with collaborators Juan Atkins and Kevin Saunderson, commonly known as the Belleville Three.


Subgenre of new wave music that first became prominent in the late 1970s and features the synthesizer as the dominant musical instrument.

The Prophet-5, one of the first polyphonic synthesizers. It was widely used in 1980s synth-pop, along with the Roland Jupiter and Yamaha DX7.
Kraftwerk, one of the major influences on synth-pop, in 1976
Yellow Magic Orchestra in 2008
Gary Numan performing in 1980
Midge Ure performing with Ultravox in Oslo in 1981.
Eurythmics (Dave Stewart and Annie Lennox) on stage in Germany in 1987.
The Pet Shop Boys performing in 2006.
Elly Jackson of La Roux performing in 2010
Martin Gore of Depeche Mode photographed in Los Angeles in 1986, wearing some of the fashions that were criticised for gender bending.

In the mid to late 1980s, duos such as Erasure and Pet Shop Boys adopted a style that was highly successful on the US dance charts, but by the end of the decade, the 'new wave' synth-pop of bands such as A-ha and Alphaville was giving way to house music and techno.

Detroit techno

The Belleville Three performing at the Detroit Masonic Temple in 2017. From left to right: Juan Atkins, Kevin Saunderson, and Derrick May

Detroit techno is a type of techno music that generally includes the first techno productions by Detroit-based artists during the 1980s and early 1990s.

Drum machine

Electronic musical instrument that creates percussion sounds, drum beats, and patterns.

A BOSS DR-3 Dr. Rhythm drum machine
Rhythmicon (1932) and Joseph Schillinger, a music educator
Wurlitzer Sideman (1959, inner view)
Korg Donca-Matic DA-20 (1963)
An Ace-Tone Rhythm Ace drum machine
Linn LM-1 (1980)
Roland TR-808 Rhythm Composer (1980)
E-mu SP-1200 (1987)
Alesis SR-16 (1991)
Korg Volca Beats (2013)
4-on-the-floor on Roland TR-707

Its successor, the TR-909, introduced in 1983, heavily influenced techno and house music.

Kevin Saunderson

American electronic music producer.

Front page of Scientific American in 1907, demonstrating the size, operation, and popularity of the Telharmonium

Saunderson, with Atkins and May (often called "the Belleville Three"), is considered to be one of the originators of techno, specifically Detroit techno.

Tech house

House music pioneers Alan King, Robert Williams and Derrick Carter.

Tech house is a subgenre of house music that combines stylistic features of techno with house.


American music collective of rotating musicians headed by George Clinton, primarily consisting of the funk bands Parliament and Funkadelic, both active since the 1960s.

George Clinton and Parliament-Funkadelic performing at the Granada Theater in Dallas, Texas, May 4, 2006
Bootsy Collins
George Clinton and Parliament-Funkadelic at the Roskilde Festival, 2006.
Umbria Jazz 2004
George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic performing in Waterfront Park, Louisville, Kentucky on July 4, 2008
George Clinton and P-Funk All Stars in Long Beach 2009
Clinton performing in Centerville, 2007

Their distinctive funk style drew on psychedelic culture, outlandish fashion, science-fiction, and surreal humor; it would have an influential effect on subsequent funk, post-punk, hip-hop, and techno artists of the 1980s and 1990s, while their collective mythology would help pioneer Afrofuturism.

Roland TR-909

Drum machine introduced by the Roland Corporation in 1983.

Roland TR-909 rear view

Though it was a commercial failure, the 909 became influential in the development of electronic dance music genres such as techno, house and acid.