Now, the inevitable Deadmau5 ‘we all hit play’ backlash

Earlier this week, one of the world’s biggest dance stars wrote a blog post entitled ‘We all hit play’. We’re talking, of course, about Deadmau5 – no stranger to incendiary statements. “I think I might have pissed off more people than I would have liked to in my previous posts and rants,” he later wrote. ‘We all hit play’ argued that there’s nothing all that ‘hands on’ about performing electronic music as a DJ or live act. “I’m just so sick of hearing the, ‘NO!!! IM NOT JUST DOING THIS, I HAVE 6 TABLES UP THERE AND I DO THIS THIS AND THIS,’” he wrote. “Like…honestly. Who gives a fuck?”

It’s certainly an argument that spread far and wide this week, inciting comment from a range of dance figures who look at DJing very differently from the mau5. One of those to unleash was the always-outspoken London veteran Mr C.

“Mixing isn’t about counting to 4, it’s about selecting the right record at the right time to CAPTURE THE MOMENT in creating extended long DJ mixes (beat matching) that make the tunes sound like live remixes,” he wrote. “FYI Deadmau5, there’s a magic that happens when 2 tunes are mixed properly together by a real DJ. Now you run along & carry on button pushing to play your cheesy pre organized shit to children in fluffy boots & stop bothering us adults all with your uninformed opinions & lies. FUCK YOU IN EVERY ORIFICE.”

Acid house pioneer A Guy Called Gerald had a similarly vitriolic response. “You come into our system that we have nurtured for the last 25 years, trick hardworking people into giving you their money, con honest promoters, take large sums of money out of the system and then spit back into our faces that YOU are tricking everyone,” he wrote on his blog. “I agree there are loads of people like you who do fake it. It is easy with the software you are using. Don’t worry we are going to find ways of stopping you. You greedy rat head fuck.”

Deadmau5’s response to that: “Let him go back to being no longer relevant.” Aside from all the swipes, there’s the makings of an interesting discussion here. Deadmau5 has pointed out that his comments aren’t as catch-all as they seemed (“I know MANY groups and individuals out there who put in serious work and effort to bring a live or creative element into EDM performance”), but that those are the exceptions that prove the rule. A response from U.S. star Bassnectar is worth a read.

“At the end of the day, this live experience is more important than what is happening on stage,” he writes in just one section of the lengthy post. “I have seen DJs completely fake their mixes, but the audience doesn’t know or doesn’t care, and is having the time of their life. And personally I have been working my ass off at times, blowing my own mind with how complex and technical my mix is, and all the while nobody can even see my hands or notice what I am doing.”