Anyone can be a DJ, right? You just hit play and move your hands around, and sometimes you don’t even need to do both of those. Of course, that’s only really true if you plan on mastering the wedding/bar mitzvah circuit — those with loftier ambitions need to find a way to cast a wider net. The past few years have seen an explosion of stadium electronica, as DJs now pack coliseums while many traditional acts are struggling. The key is creating an event, from shock-and-awe staging to blow-the-roof-off musical euphoria that never stops — and currently, no one has that combination down as perfectly as Joel Thomas Zimmerman. As his alter ego Deadmau5, he’s donned a mousehead mask and ran a howitzer through the esoteric k-holes of previous decades of techno, so that everyone could finally, once and for all, “get” this electronic music that previously had been so carefully cultivated by a fervent few.
RUNNERS-UP: Diplo, Skrillex, Swedish House Mafia