Timo Maas made a splash in the dance music world a decade ago with his epic remix of Azzido Da Bass' squelching track "Doom's Night." Since then, the German trance and house superstar has rocked club crowds all over the world with his dark, dissonant, in-your-face style. Check out his compilation mixes "Music for the Maases" Vol. 1 and 2, plus sets for Paul Oakenfold's label Perfecto Records and his excellent new experimental double-disc "Balance 017."
Maas, who steps behind the decks Wednesday night at downtown Miami's Nocturnal, talked to Miami.com about the show.
"Balance 017" is your first compilation mix in nine years. What drew you to that label?
I was thinking anyway to do a compilation for a while, but there was nothing that really appealed to me. And the Balance guys came exactly at the time I was talking to my management - you know, a compilation would be great, but what is there that will suit me? I want to express myself. And the Balance guys came and asked me if I wanted to do the compilation, and I was like, "OK," because it's quite a high-profile thing and I had all the freedom to do my thing for nearly three hours and I'm quite happy with the results.
What kind of sound or feeling were you trying to create?
I call it trippy. A continuous mix that touches every different type of music styles that make sense together, but not too much vocals or hands-in-the-air stuff. For me, a good DJ set is like an adventure, like a really good trip - it takes you out of reality for a few hours and spits you out afterwards and you're thinking, "What the f--- was that?"
Can we expect that kind of vibe at your live show?
It depends on the venue, it depends on the people, how open-minded they are. I'm always very open-minded with the kind of music that I play - I don't care if it's techno, house, minimal or whatever you call it. The energy is something that I'm always putting into my DJ sets.
Do you ever get tired of the DJ lifestyle? Does it get old?
I'd say I can't drink as much as I was able to drink 10 years ago. And I cannot say I have the same energy - of course, I have the same energy for the music, but it's a completely different experience. Yeah, sometimes it hurts a bit more when you don't get your sleep and you drink too much, but on the other hand, with all the experiences I had for the past 28 years and all the energy I hope I'm able to create - I think I can do this another few years. I'm having fun with it, and that's the most important thing - I love what I do.
Have you performed at all the Winter Music Conferences?
Yeah. Well, not all of them, but I think the first time was in 1998 and then there was only one or two years I wasn't there.
Do you have plans scheduled yet?
I'll definitely do a Balance party, I think on a boat. And also I'm looking into an interesting idea for a Rockets & Ponies party [Maas' record label] with all our artists there. I still have to figure it out. But last time in Miami, it was six gigs in four days I played. So I'm pretty sure there's something cool coming up.