The (electric) guitar is a hugely popular instrument, defining genres and likely present in most of the bands you can immediately rattle off. Strings going twang are curiously absent on a lot of dancefloors though, where synthesizers, sequencers and drum machines form most of the sounds we move our bodies to in dark club spaces.
In terms of general groupings of music: krautrock and post-punk include a lot of looped or drum machine beats with guitar riffs. This trend is particularly noticeable in newer post-punk, prog-rock, and even jazz. Nearly every genre of music is drawing elements from electronic music; – check out Big Yuki and how he uses a keyboard to make a techno bassline (SPOILERS: article coming soon). Plenty of drummers are incorporating drum pads into their kits in order to make live drummed electronic beats. Indie dance is also a good example of bands making dance-floor-ready music, some indie rock albums even have straight up dance tunes, for example checkout Jagwar Ma and remixes by the likes of Soulwax and Andrew Weatherall.
We’ve put together a list of tunes that straddle and bridge the gap between dance-y, electronic music and shredding guitar riffs. What the guitar does can be quite different though – we’ve listed a few songs here that have distinct guitar riffs as an element or sample, and some where it forms a huge basis for the whole song.
Bonus Selections from Crispian (aka Furoar):