[[quoteright:250:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/This-was-a-popular-rhythmic_8653.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:250:[[IncrediblyLamePun I wub you.]]]]

->''[[WrittenSoundEffect Wubwubwubwubwubwubwub...]]''

->''Skrillex got famous for creating an album that tries to sonically represent the sound of two fax machines fucking.''
->{{Website/Cracked}}, [[http://www.cracked.com/blog/4-artists-who-should-probably-just-take-break-while 4 Artists Who Should Probably Just Take a Break For a While]] ({{Skrillex}} was not among said artists.)

Dubstep began in [[LondonTown South London]] in the early 2000s, and has risen to become the most popular form of {{electronic music}} in years. Branching off from UK garage and grime, dubstep primarily became known for a moderate tempo (typically around 140 bpm), a heavy emphasis on bass and frequencies under 100Hz and often (but certainly not always) with a distinctive "wobble" sound. Many artists even delve into infrasonic territory below 20Hz, which is not so much ''heard'' as ''felt''. Rhythmically, dubstep is in CommonTime by definition and owes a lot of its sound to dub reggae: both usually have a snare hit on the third beat of the bar, and both drums and bass tend to make heavy use of triplets.

Originally minimalistic, dark, and atmospheric, dubstep evolved over the course of the last decade. Beats became heavier, bass more abrasive, and as the sound gained mainstream popularity, more attention was paid to big drops and "filthy" wobbles (usually preceded by a 30-60 second long intro) than atmosphere. This new form of the style became known (somewhat derogatorily) as "brostep"; that is, dubstep that "[[{{Main/Fratbro}} bros]]" could enjoy. Contrast [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ovQS1o6Dxfc "Midnight Request Line" by Skream]], one of dubstep's first crossover hits, with [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K1VLaXoRRdk the Flux Pavilion remix of "Cracks" by Freestylers]], a popular song from about 2010. This division in sound has led to massive amounts of FanDumb and BrokenBase in the dubstep community, and it will most likely [[ThisIsGonnaSuck only get worse]], as dubstep has, as of 2012, appeared even in advertisements for films, television shows and products. Many artists that once associated with the genre are splintering off and working on other forms of electronic music, such as post-dubstep (dubstep meets R&B/soul), bass music and glitch hop.

In the current scene, there are two popular varieties of dubstep; the aforementioned "brostep", which is harder and more abrasive, featuring a "filthy" sound, start-stop basslines, heavy drops and more emphasis on heavily distorted riffs as opposed to the conventional "wobble" sound of classic dubstep, and often with significant Music/HeavyMetal influences (hence the alternative name "metalstep"); and "chillstep", a LighterAndSofter take on traditional dubstep which features less distorted bass, a more spacey sound, little to no wobble riffs, less emphasis to near-absence of drops and a generally "angelic" or "uplifting" feel, although many other varieties exist, such as drumstep (dubstep + drum and bass), glitchstep (dubstep + glitch music, occasionally with some chiptune thrown in) and noisestep (dubstep + noise/industrial) Dubstep is known among artists for its ease of fusion with non-electronic music genres, such as classical, hip-hop and soul music. Its influence has also been felt in other genres of electronic music, particularly in EBM (electronic body music), IDM (intelligent dance music), IndustrialMetal and some hard varieties of {{Techno}} and {{Trance}}.

One aspect of Dubstep the technically inclined troper might find particularly interesting is that it represents the first time outside of esoteric [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Experimental_music Experimental Music]] [[note]]Most notably by avante garde composers such as [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giacinto_Scelsi Giacinto Scelsi]], [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phill_Niblock Phill Niblock]], and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alvin_Lucier Alvin Lucier]][[/note]] that the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beat_%28acoustics%29 beating]] phenomenon has ever been deeply explored as an integral, preplanned, part of composition. When two disharmonious tones are played simultaneously, the out-of-sync soundwaves alternately combine and cancel, forming a third wave. This third wave is heard as a pulsing, or ''beating''. When this pulse is slow, it is perceived as a rhythm, and when it is fast it perceived as a third tone. Adding additional disharmonious tones to the mix adds more beating to the sound, which creates more complex interactions, and thus additional illusory notes and rhythms. The wubs and wobbles of dubstep are essentially dramatic demonstrations of a bizarre and novel new area of musical exploration; paradoxically using precisely engineered sets of disharmonious tones to create harmonious sounds that blur the line between rhythm and tone.

While the fans and critics of dubstep will doubtless be trolling each other in music forums for years to come over its [[LoveItOrHateIt artistic merits or lack thereof]], the impact dubstep has had on the electronic music world is undeniable.
----
!!Notable Artists:
* 12th Planet
* 16bit (Arguable TropeMaker[=/=]co-TropeCodifier for noisestep and glitchstep)
* 2562
* 501
* 50 Carrot
* Alvin Risk
* Antiserum
* Appleblim
* Artwork
* Au5
* Bar 9
* Barely Alive
* Bassnectar (Major contributor for modern dubstep; possibly a TropeMaker for brostep)
* Benga
* Blackleg
* Music/{{Blackmill}} (Major contributor for the chillstep genre)
* Borgore (TropeCodifier for brostep)
* Boxcutter
* {{Burial}}
* Caspa
* Chase & Status (mixed with UK garage, drum and bass and electro house; Co-TropeCodifier for drumstep)
* Coki
* Cookie Monsta
* Culprate
* Darkstar
* Datsik
* Destroid (supergroup consisting of Excision, Downlink and [[Music/{{Pendulum}} KJ Sawka]])
* Dillon Francis (mixed with moombahton; TropeCodifier for moombahcore)
* DJ Alex S.
* Downlink
* Doctor P (one of the very heavier brostep artists around)
* Dodge and Fuski
* Digital Mystikz
* Dirtyphonics (mixed with drum and bass)
* Distance
* DZ
* El-B
* Ephixa
* Eptic
* Music/{{Excision}} (TropeCodifier for death metal-influenced brostep, also known as deathstep)
* Far Too Loud (mixed with breakbeat and IDM; Co-TropeCodifier for drumstep)
* Feed Me
* Flux Pavilion (Co-TropeCodifier for noisestep, though he is much more influenced by reggae music than other dubstep artists)
* [=FuntCase=]
* Gemini
* Getter
* Horsepower Productions
* Ill Gates
* Jack Sparrow
* James Blake
* Joe Ford
* Joker
* J:Kenzo
* Kill Paris
* Kill the Noise
* Killsonik (formerly known as Chasing Shadows)
* [[Music/KnifeParty Knife Party]]
* Kode9
* KOAN Sound (though they mostly do Glitch-Hop)
* Kromestar
* Kuedo
* Lazer Sword
* LD
* Music/LindseyStirling
* Loefah
* Liquid Stranger
* Magnetic Man (a {{Supergroup}} comprising Artwork, Benga and {{Skream}})
* Mala
* Modestep - Full-fledged live band which plays brostep very blatantly influenced by {{hard rock}} and {{thrash metal}}.
* Monsta (brostep trio led by R&B singer Bryn Christopher[[note]]Yes, their songs do have full, discernible lyrics[[/note]]; renamed in 2013 as I See Monstas)
* Music/{{Nero}} (The EnsembleDarkhorse of the genre)
* Mount Kimbie
* Music/{{Noisia}} (Although they've only done a few songs in the style, their main Neurofunk/Drum and Bass style was quite influential to the "brostep" style.)
* Omnipony
* Peverelist
* Pinch
* Posij
* Reso (Originally did, but now mostly creates more experimental material)
* Rusko (Either the TropeMaker or UrExample of brostep)
* Scuba
* Seven Lions
* Shackleton
* [=SKisM=]
* {{Skream}} (co-TropeCodifier (chillstep))
* {{Skrillex}} (co-TropeCodifier (brostep))
* Submotion Orchestra (a vocal jazz band featuring dubstep producer Ruckspin at the helm)
* Terravita - A prime example of the hardest side of Glitchstep
* V.I.V.E.K.
* Vex'd
* Vexare
* Xilent - Polish rising star who fuses {{chiptune}} music with pounding brostep, with influences from [[MelodicDeathMetal melodeath]] and {{metalcore}} here and there.
* xKore
* Music/{{Zomby}}
* Zomboy - Mixes Dubstep with {{Grindcore}}, {{Industrial}}, {{Speedmetal}}, and [[NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly complex classical (yes, as in symphony) influences]]. Particularly notable for producing demented [[CuteAndPsycho wacky upbeat hardcore brostep tracks]].
----
!!Tropes associated with the dubstep genre:
* AutoTune: Commonly used by artists in the genre, mostly to add vocal effects rather than cover up bad singing. The results can range from [[MostWonderfulSound angelic vocal runs]] to [[IndecipherableLyrics incomprehensible singing]].
* BrokenBase: One of the most divisive genres in modern music; fans are divided over whether to listen to the more atmospheric "chillstep", or to the more metallic "brostep". The dubstep fandom continues to schism at an alarming rate due to the ever-increasing number of dubstep variants in the current scene.
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: Where most dubstep tends towards a dark or even harsh tone, Zomboy's music is best described as a mix of wacky AffectionateParody, beautiful chillstep melodies bordering on {{Trance}}, and [[MoodWhiplash sudden plunges into speaker-destroying brostep]]. These shifts happen ''multiple times mid-song'', mind you.
* DigitalPiracyIsOkay: Well it ''generally'' is, as the dubstep scene is mostly filled with indies musicians. [[KeepCirculatingTheTapes Some musicians actively encourage fans to do this]].
* EnsembleDarkhorse: While the genre as a whole [[LoveItOrHateIt isn't particularly well-received]] by fans of heavy music and fans of any genre, the scene is also notable for putting forth some of the most highly acclaimed and pioneering artists in ElectronicMusic, some of which include the following...
** Music/{{Nero}}, is ''by far'' the most respected brostep act, as their debut album, ''Welcome Reality'', received highly positive reviews from critics, rave fan response and stepped up brostep's mainstream popularity up a notch thanks to their constant inclusion in modern media. In fact, they have even produced a song for the soundtrack of the 2013 movie reenactment of ''The Great Gatsby''.
** Music/LindseyStirling has become one in some circles.
** Excision also gains massive respect from not only dubstep fans but also from fans of heavy music in general, thanks to his furious sound influenced by genres such as brutal death metal and HarshNoise. This respect led to the sudden bump in popularity of the otherwise obscure "noisestep" genre, ultimately bridging the gap between established heavy ElectronicMusic styles and experimental subgenres such as noise and {{industrial}} and bringing a new, more futuristic vibe to an otherwise stagnant style of music.
** Zomboy, thanks to his [[NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly seamless]] [[SongStyleShift fusion]] in his songs, is regarded by many as a rising force in brostep.
* EverythingIsAnInstrument: Dubstep artists often use a wide variety of musical instruments, despite what [[PublicMediumIgnorance most people think]]. Guitars, basses, synthesizers, drums, violins, wind instruments, computer software, theremins and sequencers are commonly used instruments in dubstep, but sometimes artists opt for rather bizarre instrument choices. The use of jackhammers and circuit boards is not unheard of...
* IndecipherableLyrics: Dubstep artists, especially more modern acts, tend to throw in vocals for whatever reason. Combining vocals with the SensoryAbuse the genre is known for often results to this. The vocal work in Music/{{Skrillex}}' "Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites" is a particularly grating example.
* ItsPopularNowItSucks: A common perception from longtime fans of the genre.
* HarshNoise: A very, very big influence to brostep, with artists such as Skrillex, Excision and Kill The Noise being the most blatantly influenced by it. Noisestep artists tend to draw even more inspiration from the genre, leading to some overlap with {{industrial}} (especially the power electronics and EBM subsets).
* KeepCirculatingTheTapes: Many dubstep releases (especially the older ones) tend to be very hard to find; much of the traditional dubstep that still exists today has virtually gone out of print, and new artists rarely release professional studio records, therefore the only practical way of obtaining most dubstep is through file sharing sites. Some artists have taken advantage of this by deliberately releasing albums for free, and making money through other means, such as performing live or selling dubstep-related merch.
* MohsScaleOfRockAndMetalHardness: One of the non-metal genres that have crept up in the scale, due to its many similarities (and crossovers) with rock and metal music, and one of the few genres that covers (almost) the entire scale. The lowest reached was with Burial, a 1-2, and the hardest dubstep artist on the scale is an ex-aequo between Kill The Noise, Datsik, Excision and Downlink, all usually having songs residing at levels 10-[[UpToEleven 11.]][[note]]If you want to know, Skrillex is mostly a hard 9-standard 10.[[/note]]
** Chillstep is usually a 1-2, most traditional dubstep can be found at levels 3 to 5, modern dubstep typically ranges from 6 to 7, and brostep starts at 8 and can go up to 10, with the [[HarshNoise noisier]] and more [[DeathMetal slam]]-influenced varieties going [[UpToEleven up to 11.]] Here are some examples of dubstep music at each level.[[note]]TV Tropes encourages you to put more examples here and in the scale.[[/note]]
*** Chillstep (like {{Trance}}, only more window-rattling)
** 1. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSUu32d8b3g Burial & Four Tet -- Moth]]
** 2. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlEkvbRmfrA Burial -- Archangel]][[http://youtu.be/sf6LD2B_kDQ Lindsey Stirling -- Elements]]
** 3. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9CoUJAyeOfM Skream -- Listenin' To The Records On My Wall]]
** 4. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOjHFeckZik Benga -- 26 Basslines]]
** 5. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B5hhy9OAmlE Chase & Status ft. Liam Bailey -- Blind Faith]]
** 6. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eE-dwpWpscU DJ Fresh ft. Sian Evans -- Louder]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bGl4wM8J30I Kill Paris -- Slap Me]]
** 7. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_chHL-57i0 Flux Pavilion -- Blow The Roof]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlNg_ZgihC0 Bassnectar -- Empathy]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GhkQ6FfQ3KE Rusko -- Woo Boost]]
** 8. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1S35THmZD_E Nero -- Innocence]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SXyW-oyc7-c KOAN Sound -- Dynasty]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=COfzQaTJoP0 Savant -- How I Roll]]
** 9. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u553T1-LRgs Monsta -- Holdin' On (Skrillex & Nero Remix)]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VlnBh0hRpfM Far Too Loud -- Firestorm]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XWAIJTtvhK0 Killsonik -- Slaughterhouse]]
** 10. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F21aifX0lZY Skrillex -- Kill EVERYBODY]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7-3hRyCEunA FuntCase -- 50 Caliber]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2paRu1lpXs4 Alvin Risk -- Skyclad]]
** [[UpToEleven 11.]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8OICbb0lpQ Excision, Downlink, Space Laces -- Destroid 2. Wasteland]], [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CVxC0j1wK0 Zomboy -- Organ Donor]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNgpjn1llCw xKore -- The Saw]], [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zH4WHE0HZe8 Doctor P -- Big Boss]]
*** Brostep (Doubles as paint remover)
* PublicMediumIgnorance: Anyone who has a passing knowledge of what dubstep is would immediately think of Music/{{Skrillex}} upon hearing the word, not knowing that a whole scene of active dubstep musicians exists. This knowledge often reaches FanDumb levels as they continue to associate Skrillex with the genre,[[note]]when in fact, Skrillex usually produces house music and {{trance}}, but his dubstep has become so well-known that even his non-dubstep works are easily overlooked.[[/note]] to the point where the rest of the dubstep scene is perecived as irrelevant. This can get particularly grating in some cases, as many music [[FanDumb fans]] now believe that Skrillex is an even better composer than Creator/HansZimmer, Creator/{{Mozart}}, or Music/YoshikiHayashi simply because [[InsaneTrollLogic Skrillex makes dubstep]].
** Moreover, many people have grown so accustomed to the brostep sound, to the point where they have come to believe that "all dubstep is brostep" or "brostep is the one true dubstep" and shun all other varieties due to not being "filthy" enough.
** It has gotten progressively worse in recent years, as dubstep continues to displace established electronic music genres such as eurobeat, industrial and trance, to the point where some ignorant listeners have begun calling all forms of electronic music "dubstep". [[{{Techno}} This sounds eerily familiar...]] Becomes especially annoying to those who still work with non-dubstep electronic genres, especially toward the ends that aren't as "danceable" as brostep (such as psytrance or Goa trance where the point is creating a story of sound, not necessarily being catchy or even danceable - a psytrance song can actually be meant more for contemplation or tripping as opposed to dancing for example)
* RearrangeTheSong: Dubstep musicians frequently rearrange songs from within and outside the genre. Some even go as far as making multiple versions of their own songs.
* SensoryAbuse- Fans of the brostep and noisestep flavors would add "but in a good way!". Particularly harsh tracks tend to be fondly referred to as "dirty" or "filthy", playing off of those being the next level of grit up from "grungy".
* TheScrappy: To ElectronicMusic, at least. For artists, however, Borgore was this, although many successful collaborations with various artists (more emblematically with MileyCyrus) and his ownership of a very promising electronic-centered label, Buygore, [[RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap retroactively gave him lots of respect.]]
** Music/{{Skrillex}} has become this, arguably due to the FanDumb's apparent worship of his music, but in recent times his music seems to have gained much less respect [[SeinfeldIsUnfunny thanks to the ever-growing number of producers who seek to copy his metal-influenced brostep style]].
* ThreeChordsAndTheTruth: While most dubstep makes use of melodies, they tend to sound more simple in comparison with other ElectronicMusic genres. This trope comes into play in many "bass drops" where musicality is dropped in favor of rhythmic "wobble" bass riffs. Brostep takes this UpToEleven by eschewing bass wobbles for heavily distorted riffs reminiscent of {{industrial}} music, although there are exceptions: some artists, such as Flux Pavilion and Borgore, subvert this trope, as they keep a certain amount of musicality in the drop. Chillstep artists, and even a handful of brostep artists[[note]]Examples are Feed Me and Monsta[[/note]], however, avert this trope altogether.
* TropeCodifier: Skream or Music/{{Skrillex}}, [[InternetBackdraft debates]] [[FlameWar are]] [[SerialEscalation continuing]].
* UncommonTime: Usually used in the harder varieties of brostep, such as noisestep and glitchstep, to make the already-harsh drops even more harsh and disorienting. Borgore, Excision and Kill The Noise have made time-signature torture an art form in brostep. Speaking technically and aesthetically, this, combined with the stops and skips, actually forms one of the more innovative aspects of Dubstep, and a major point in the "artistic merit" column. By fluidly warping, stuttering, and halting the actual timing of tracks independently of one another ''and'' as a whole, a skilled producer can wrangle a chaotic tangle of dissonant notes into incredibly complex [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polychord polychord harmonies]] and meta-rhythms with multiple levels of synchopation and cross-beat. Even wildly experimental genres like Freeform Jazz and the Modernist Period of classical music had only flirted with the idea of a non-unified, non-linear time signature.
----