I had a very similar musical journey as your by the sounds of it - I was brought up on Rock N' Roll that my parents were into (40's, Post-War generation) & Pop music I was hearing on TV & Radio. But I always loved computer game music, which I'd been into since the early 80's. So when my best mate's brother gave us a copy of JMJ's Rendezvous to listen to I was completely blown away! Following that all my paper round/pocket money went on JMJ albums. I explored other electronic music as well but it wasn't until House music hit around 1986 that things really started to get going .... the rest as they say is history
But my theory on what comes next has been the same for some years now. I think when House music hit from 86 to around 95 there was a real surge in the evolution of dance/electronic music. So much happened in such a short time & I think styles evolved & moved on well before they were even properly explored! Beyond the mid 90's I think people started looking back more & a lot of what had come before was re-examined & built upon. I don't think there has been ANY significant developments in style since that time. But that's not to say there hasn't been any good music. Quite the opposite. I think things have gotten more interesting as old ideas are explored & re-invented.
In some ways now it's a problem that every man & his dog can & are making music. EVERYONE & ANYONE can do this. There is nothing special about it at all anymore. Making music is something that EVERYONE now has access to, which is a huge difference to how things have been 10, 15, 20+ years ago. In the past it was obviously a very specialist area that not many had access to without spending lots of money or being very successful in order to open doors. It's hard to imagine this now we are making music on our mobile phones these days!!
So in order to move things forward I think it's really important that people making music more than ever have a strong focus, discipline & direction if they are going to make something that stands out & has any chance of being 'genre defining' where electronic music is concerned. That's a good thing though as any real quality I think has a chance of standing out. But I do kind of feel that everything HAS been done & these days it's more about re-inventing the wheel rather than making a new one!
Going back to our rave roots - A lot of the music from back then sounds pants now. It was very of the time & is quite embarrassing to listen to these days musically. But It's great to listen to because of the memories we have of it & the nostalgia. And there are some things which still sound great today, but not many. Have a listen to this - http://boomkat.com/downloads/593097-...ions-1994-1996
This has it's roots, inspiration from Rave music but the sounds are used in very different ways. This is one of my favourite albums from last year & is the kind of thing I was talking about earlier - Old sounds & ideas completely re-imagined in extremely creative ways. Fantastic stuff