Poll 2008: Deadmau5 | DJMag.com Skip to main content
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Questions Top100 DJs 2008 - admin - 2015-06-30 17:20

Music of the electronic variety.
Best known for: 
'Faxing Berlin'
Tune of the year: 
Daniel Papini 'Church of Nonsense' (Alchemy)
Producer of 2008: 
John Dahlbäck
First record you ever brought: 
Petter 'Some Polyphony' (Border Community)
Weirdest thing you've seen all year: 
An airport in Brazil, it was the smallest airport I've ever seen. It was one room with one door, and farmer Joe and his tractor taking the luggage off the plane.
Top gadget of 2008: 
The Jazzmutant Lemur because it's very versatile - it's modular, you can update it as your set updates.
Your year in five words...: 
Absolutely, undoubtedly and incredibly insane!
Most important thing you've learnt recently: 
Airplanes don't have horns on the steering column, we checked!

There's nothing dead about Canada's hottest export Joel Zimmerman, aka Deadmau5. To say that this electro expert has had an insane year is a vast understatement. The Highest New Entry in this year's Top 100, it's hard to believe that last year he was relatively unknown, until his massive trance-house production 'Faxing Berlin' hit, that is. Now, he's rocking crowds from Brazil to the UK, wearing that distinctive giant mouse head and leading dance fans of all stripes on an exhilarating new electro ride. "I'm not too finicky about certain genres," shrugs Zimmerman, perfectly pinpointing his ability to meld different styles of dance music together to create an amalgam with universal club appeal. Named in last year's poll as Producer of the Year by Armin Van Buuren and Tiësto, and garnering awards left, right and centre from online retailers Juno and Beatport, Deadmau5 has become big business, super fast. A succession of immense tunes like 'Not Exactly' (slowed-down melodic trance/house hybrid peppered with groovin' kicks and hits), 'Arguru' (propulsive electro shapeshifter) and 'The Reward is Cheese' (squelching bassline filth) have catapulted him up the dance music ladder, and now you'll see Deadmau5 tunes jostling for space in the CD wallets of everyone from Van Buuren to Kevorkian and Kleinenberg to Tong. Acquiring that unusual name after finding the stinky surprise of a frazzled rodent in his computer, the Canadian beat-smith, originally from Niagara Falls, now resides in Toronto, from where he emits his consistently on-point dancefloor bombs. Committed to the digital age, most of Deadmau5's productions have been available exclusively online, with their rapid adoption by many of the major DJ players a genuine indication of where DJ culture and indeed music in general is going. A true techno freak, Deadmau5 isn't content with just DJing and his gigs have become closer to live shows, riffing on his already large catalogue with state-of-the-art computer wizardry. With the giant mouse head on and flashing eyes wired into the mainframe to strobe to the beat, Zimmerman is intent on crafting an all-encompassing world for his alter ego, which is set to grow, with a constantly shifting tech set-up. For this Canadian wonder, it's all about manipulation of technology to its logical, spectacular conclusion - pushing the machines as far as they'll go whether the medium be within music or within the visual arena. Still bowled over by the speed of his ascent into the upper echelons of dance, Joel distinctly remembers the tipping point at which the Deadmau5 phenomenon kicked off in the UK. "The best thing for me was playing before Fatboy Slim at the 02 Wireless Festival, it was really cool to be able to introduce so many new people to my music." This summer, Zimmerman laid the groundwork for his new album, 'Random Album Title' (out now on Mau5trap Recordings), with new tracks like the funky electro bounce of 'Hi Friend', featuring Toronto MC Flipside, and the more deep house flavoured 'I Remember', a collaboration with Kaskade, further cementing the Mau5's already considerable reputation. And with the album composed of a clutch of classics, alongside several new killers - including 'Brazil', a killer ode to the country's most impressive clubs - it's set to have an incendiary effect across clubland. He's also fired up his Mau5trap Recordings stable, which up 'til now has been largely an outlet for his own productions, and promises new music from Sydney Blu and drum & bass turned electro dude Feed Me. With a massive world tour continuing throughout November and December, touching down in LA, Buenos Aires, Rio, Sao Paulo, Boulder, NYC, Detroit, Yucatán, Mexico City and Phoenix, to name only a few, and a big Australian tour in early 2009, we have a new dance music hero in our midst. It seems that the madness has only begun…