OAKLAND — Deadmau5 continued his string of Bay Area shows Tuesday night and dazzled a full house at the Fox Theater. The highly anticipated tour featured Canadian DJ Joel Zimmerman’s new and enormous “Cube 2.1,” an LED light-encrusted production element that dominated the stage, with Deadmau5 atop, running the show.
The set started out slow and melodic with new track “Imaginary Friends,” showcasing Zimmerman’s ability to captivate an audience, and ultimately crescendoed into his classic electronic beats that made him a star more within the last 10 years—”Maths,” “Strobe” and others. If the track names induce feelings of sensory overload, so did the music and the production. The first few tracks were heavy on synthezier. They paid homage to early electronic produced music decades ago, yet still had a modern feel. Most of the material came from his latest album, 2016’s W:/2016ALBUM/. The set lasted two hours, during which Deadmau5—best-known for wearing a giant light-up mouse head—also played older cuts like “Ghosts ‘n’ Stuff ” and “Some Chords,” as well as more tracks from his latest album, W:/2016ALBUM/.
The electronic dance music DJ was an innovator in turning his remixes into visual art, and he continued the trend on this tour. As Deadmau5 transitioned his tracks between hard electro, house and even dubstep, the visual spectacle of the the cube changed from sweeping arrays of light to zany cat animations and a nature tour with a birds-eye tour over a mountain range. The audio transitions felt natural, with new material fitting in alongside the more classic tracks.
The show’s production, paired with Zimmerman’s charisma on stage, created a highly memorable performance.
U.K. dubstep and electro house producer Feed Me (Jon Gooch) had a strong presence opening up the night with a similar sounding feel to Deadmau5.