What are electronic music artists doing during live shows?

There is no right or wrong answer, even not for deadmau5. He does what he does.

Some people just press the play button and pretend to do everything (e.g. Justice’s famous photograph below).

Some people press play and wave their hands around while mostly mixing multichannel prerecorded audio (chemical brothers were pretty famous for doing this with an ADAT back in the 90s).

Some people use fx to live manipulate prerecorded audio by pressing play.

Some people prefer sequenced, live synthesizer over prerecorded audio tracks in Ableton (e.g. daft punk).

Some people perform the beats quantized live on MPCs/APDs/Monomes. (e.g. araabMUZIK).

Alternative controllers or systems with Monomes controllers are used by some people to reinterpret recorded audio in live settings (e.g. Daedelus below). You can also mix it with live instruments or cut the audio.

Some people do all-hardware sets. John Tejada, my partner in crime, and I conducted a tour that used only Elektron Monomachines or Machinedrums.

Some people do crazy all-live stuff through looping pedals (or ableton rigs w/foot controllers) + fx, like beardyman.

So on. It’s amazing to see new techniques and ideas when electronics are interwoven with live performance. Every performer has their own unique ways of having fun. There are many ways to have fun, and neither is better than the other.

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