Canadian EDM titan Joel Zimmerman aka Deadmau5 has traditionally been one of dance music’s most prickly characters, as much as he’s been responsible for those thundering club anthems. He’s in the past been characteristically (and very loudly) ambivalent about his ranking in the Top 100 poll, and this year he declined again to be interviewed by DJ Mag. However, with the action-packed year that Deadmau5 enjoyed, ranking in the poll was always a given.
Firstly, 2014 finally saw the release of the long-promised double-album epic ‘(1<2)’, which in spite of the fact it was preceded by several other full-length efforts stretching back to 2005, was described on Twitter as “the first album I’ve ever done that I would even call an album.”
“I know the album release has been dragging, but after yet another listen here, I think it’ll be worth the wait,” he said of the effort that saw him stretching his creative legs across a number of different styles, genres and tempos. “It’s put together like an album, not a compilation.”
On the flipside, we’ve also seen Deadmau5 scaling back his live gigs this year, in exchange for plenty more straight-up DJ performances. Back-to-back shows with fellow leviathans like Richie Hawtin and Eric Prydz have been joined by sets that embrace more of a stripped-back techno aesthetic. One such performance was his visit to Ibiza’s Amnesia in July to play Cream’s 20th anniversary party, which he subsequently shared online with his fans.
“I personally feel like I gave a piece of me to Amnesia tonight, regardless of what big room tunes I didn’t play,” he told his fans on Twitter. “Cleaned the foam up.”
The greater number of DJ sets this year though, alludes to the fact that he’s readying his next tour, a ‘360’ concept that he promises is bigger than anything we’ve seen from him before. All signs point to one of dance music’s most visible artists being more visible than ever in 2015.