Why Deadmau5 and Eric Prydz Are The Superduo We Deserve
Whenever two unique, creative producers get in the studio together and collaborate on a song, it causes quite a stir in the dance music community. Questions like “is there more to this project than just this collaboration?” start to fly around, and there is a noticeable excitement surrounding these producers. As of late, we've see quite a lot of "superstar" producers get into a studio together, build off of each other’s production abilities, and form yet another superduo. We’ve seen this countless times within the last couple of years - Skrillex and Boys Noize forming acid house superduo Dog Blood, Ferry Corsten and Markus Schulz coming together to become New World Punx, Dubfire and Sharam together as Deep Dish, and maybe the original supergroup in dance music, Steve Angello, Sebastian Ingrosso, and Axwell together as Swedish House Mafia. The formula for success for these superduos is simple - get together and release a few creative productions, generate buzz around their names, and then set off on a tour hitting big cities and festivals.
However, just last year, it seemed as if a new superduo was going to form that would change this trend in dance music, and elevate our expectations of superduos to new heights. No, I’m not talking about Skrillex and Diplo’s project Jack U, but rather deadmau5 and Eric Prydz, two producers who are already considered elite by their peers and their fans and who could take dance music to places that its never been before.
EDM is in an interesting state in the U.S. right now. Dance music has gotten increasingly popular in the last couple of years, and as more and more people have joined the scene, there’s started to become an increase in the commercialization of the movement as well. A culture that’s been supported by a sense of community and togetherness that has been forced underground by social norms for years is now starting to see an influx of new music fans who have a completely different idea of what EDM is. And because of this new accessibility to dance music via social media and online avenues, many DJs are now truly under the microscope as they are behind the decks and in the studio.
Right now, the dance music community has the opportunity to see two of the best and brightest come together and potentially do something that’s never been done in dance music. Eric Prydz, a legend in progressive house and techno under his aliases Pryda and Cirez D respectively, is known for pushing the envelope and challenging his sound creatively and visually. In a comment on the Reddit AMA, Prydz said “we have a guy who comes with me to all the EPIC shows in America who controls the lasers. It's not computerized as he has to respond to the music as I play it; we can't pre-program as no-one knows in advance what I will play." At EPIC 3.0, Prydz played a three-hour long set complete with visuals, lasers, and the largest hologram America has ever seen. However, as he explains in the comment above, not a single minute of a Prydz set was ever pre-planned or pre-recorded. It is all mixed live by a master technician for his fans. This kind of passion towards his art and towards his fans is uncommon in dance music nowadays, where making money and gaining popularity has seemed to become bigger priorities.
Even though deadmau5 has openly come out to say that he is not a DJ but rather a producer, he is quite a talented producer at that. Arguably, the space where deadmau5 shines most is in the studio, where he has a discography that can rival the likes of any other producer in dance music. Producing great music takes time, energy, and talent, and deadmau5 is definitely one the best there is, and possibly one of the best we’ll see, in dance music.
The two superstars, while unconventional for a superduo, are primed to make waves in dance music. Not only do their individual talents rival that of any other superduo, but together, their potential to shine is unmatched. Between their respective discography's and Cirez D and testpilot, their techno aliases, Prydz and deadmau5 have a lot of pliable material to weave together and to create soundscapes that can only be imagined by the rest of us. And while their three-hour b2b set at HARD Day of the Dead in Los Angeles on November 1 is sure to be one of the best sets of the weekend, attendees of Day of the Dead are not only getting the treat of seeing these two unparalleled stars play together, but will get to see them handpick and curate their own stage.
Their stage, aptly named mau5-ville, stems from deadmau5 and Prydz’s labels mau5trap and Mouseville. While we don’t know who Prydz and deadmau5 have hand selected to be on their mau5-ville stage just yet, a quick look at the lineup can fill in some blanks. Mau5trap star recruit Eekkoo and Pryda mainstay Jeremy Olander will probably snag coveted spots on their labelheads’ stage, as well as techno producer Gesaffelstein, who Prydz has openly said he’s a big fan of. Another potential spot may go to ZHU, the LA-native who has remained mysteriously anonymous, while garnering over 5,000,000 plays for his track “Faded.”
Other names to keep an eye out for during the weekend are Knife Party, who earned a headlining spot on Saturday night with their debut album Abandon Ship set to be officially released just days after, and Anna Lunoe, the Aussie producer in the middle of her huge All Out Fall Out tour.
On Sunday, the star of the festival may be the Dirtybird BBQ stage, curated by Dirtybird labelhead Claude vonStroke. The stage is sure to feature Dirtybird artists like Justin Martin, Eats Everything, Shiba San, Christian Martin, and more.
While HARD Day of the Dead has a diverse lineup with talent everywhere, the star of the festival is sure to be Prydz and deadmau5’s Mau5-ville stage. It isn’t often that we get to see two great minds come together to not only play a three-hour set, but to curate their own stage and handpick the talent to play it.