Pick the ideal headphone for your favourite music genre

Music is a personal experience. Different genres appeal to different people. You might love listening to loud music while your friends may like slow, soft tunes. It’s not the first thing that pops to your mind when buying headphones, but you should choose a pair depending on the kind of music genre you love listening to.

If you ever were to listen to slow music with a bass heavy headphone, you can be sure you’ll have a lousy experience. The sound which you would have been craving would be destroyed right then and there. Ideally, every kind of genre deserves to be played with a compatible headphone to give you the best sound output.

Raghav Somani, Founder and CEO, Headphone Zone, shares a genre-based collection of headphones for fans of Rock, Classical, EDM/Bollywood, Pop, Hip- Hop, Jazz etc to make sure you are never disappointed after buying a new set.

Rock Music

A genre of popular music that originated as “rock and roll” in the US in the 1950s, and developed into a range of different styles. Rock as we know it today musically manages to stay centered on the electric guitar, usually as part of a rock group with electric bass guitar and tons of aggressive drums. It is a well-known fact that there are a vast number of sub genres under the Rock music moniker, thus you would always need something highly versatile. The requirement is definitely something that performs across the range, with an intense energy and has no problem playing laid back tunes. Capturing the slightest elements of your metal music is the most important function of your headphones.

Seek out: Open-Back or Closed Back, Supra-Aural, Circum-Aural or even In-Ear. An Open-Back will give you a spacious feeling with buttery smooth upper and lower mids. A Closed Back headphone will deliver intense drums and percussion and won’t earn you annoying looks from people sitting next to you.

Pop Music

Pop music is a genre of popular music that originated in its modern form very recently – just some 50 years ago! It is undoubtedly all about energy and enjoyment. Sure there will be a mellow song here and there, but well, you know what you like Pop for, it’s so much fun! As a genre, it is not highly demanding of the equipment needed to listen to it. It just needs a pair of headphones that deliver, with a fair bit of accuracy and loads of energy. The bass needs to be fast, but controlled and the mids and highs need to be clear.

Seek out: Pop is meant to be fun, thus you need headphones that aren’t very analytical, doesn’t sound harsh and should be easily accessible and not a hassle to use.

Electronic Dance

Is the music of the current times, even Pop and Hip-Hop artists turn to EDM Producers to produce their tracks. This is highly evident by the music of well renowned artists like Beyonce, Madonna, Justin Bieber, A$AP Rocky, etc. EDM is not produced in the same fashion as normal music. Just like Rock Music, EDM also has a vast variety of sub genres that deliver their own kind of sound. Electro-Pop, Electronica, Dubstep, House, Deep House, Trap, Club House, Brostep, Reggaestep are a bunch of the popular ones right now. EDM is all the rage right now and you definitely need the right headphones to get the best of it.

Seek out: You need headphones that have loads of fast paced bass and don’t sound harsh: one that does the job for most sub genres. One with good performance throughout the frequency range will take care of the rest.


Jazz spans a period of over a hundred years, encompassing a very wide range of music, making it difficult to define. It makes heavy use of improvisation & swings. Very reminiscent of European harmony, pop, blue notes and ragtime. Jazz is always a tough nut to crack, whether you are playing, recording or even listening. No wonder it is one of the most exciting genres in the world of music. It needs clinical perfection, but with a soul of its own. You want to be able to experience the madness of Buddy Rich, but feel the love of Charles Barkley.

Seek out: You would need a headphone that has the most velvety smooth mids that you have ever heard, tight bass that is fast and warm at the same time and highs that are controlled and not harsh. An open back set of headphones would be preferred, but selected closed back sets and in-ears would also perform well.

Classical music

Is an art form. A very high level of complexity, classical music achieves a remarkable marriage of boldly distinctive melodies with harmony in order to create beautifully rich symphonies & orchestral pieces. Classical is a genre that demands perfection! Astonishing clarity and immense attention to detail are the key elements that your headphones should comprise of. Equipment that are sub-par can not do justice to this genre. You need neutrality, accurate imaging and an expansive soundstage. Having said this, your headphones have to be engaging enough for you to comfortably enjoy Pavarotti’s Baritone or Pt. Zakir Hussain’s Tablas, for hours on end.

Seek out: Since you’re going to be wearing your headphones for a while if you’re listening to classical music, you really want them to be comfortable enough to sit back and enjoy. Open-Back, Over the Ear headphones are recommended, but certain in-ears can also do the job well.

(Puja Gupta)