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What is hardstyle music? Hardstyle is an electronic dance music genre with a tempo of 140-150 BPM. It has influences of both hardcore and house music and the beats per minute lie exactly between these two. Several subgenres have developed over the years, such as raw style and terror. The hard sound of the first years is now often referred to as 'early' hardstyle.

Hardstyle is an accessible genre because of all the subgenres. Hardcore, freestyle, euphoric, uptempo or extra raw? There is one for everybody. Most of the time the artists choose to focus on one specific style, but they also often experiment. Leading artists of the euphoric style are for instance Brennan Heart, Noisecontrollers and Wildstylez. Popular hardcore and early hardcore artists are Nosferatu, Angerfist, Mad Dog and The Viper. Leading raw and extra raw artists are Radical Redemption, Warface, Requiem and Delete. Popular freestyle artists are Paul Elstak, Darkraver, and Vince.

The origins of Hardstyle In the year 2000 the hardcore genre had reached his peak. This was the call for new sounds and it was loud and clear.

On the 3rd of February 2001, the very first edition of Qlimax took place in a sports center in Amsterdam. Later that month, the very first edition of Qlubtempo was held in the “Hemkade“ in Zaandam. It was the beginning of a new, fresh and hard sound that would grow to become one of the most important genres in the EDM industry, hardstyle.

The first editions of Qlubtempo were a mix between German, Italian and UK hard house records. A little rough at first, but it didn’t last very long until it developed into a completely new sound. In December of 2001, Q-dance sold out the 3rd edition of Qlimax in the Heineken Music Hall, being their first major hardstyle event.

After several successful editions of Qlubtempo and Qlimax, the word hardstyle was born. Q-dance registered the word 'hardstyle' as their brand on the 4th of July 2002.

While Qlubtempo saw its last edition in 2003, Qlimax is still one of Q-dance’s most popular concepts and the biggest indoor hardstyle event in the world.

Subgenres