How I Play: Datsik Interview

A few weeks ago we had a chance to sit down with the Canadian-based dubstep DJ and producer Datsik for an extensive interview. He dropped some great production knowledge in the interview, as well well as discussing how he performs live using Ableton Live, a Launchpad, and a custom mapping for a DJM-900. 

Special thanks to Datsik for sitting down with us, as well as to the I Love This City festival in Mountain View for letting us film on location!  You can check out and buy Datsik’s tracks, including the ones featured in this video, on his Beatport page!

If you enjoyed this piece, check out some of the other awesome artists we’ve interviewed in the past.


ableton liveDatsikdjdubstepHow I Playi love this cityinterviewlaunchpadmountain viewpioneer DJM-900remapping pioneer mixerssan franciscoshoreline amphitheater
Comments (62)
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  • h8er boi

    So I don’t understand why you guys didn’t ask him to demonstrate how he hooks up DJ-900’s to Ableton. That would be very useful knowledge. This interview is not all that useful

  • Dionpangallo

    sounds like he sampled skrillex over and over rather than his own shit

  • Snowtrixxx1301

    some of you guys need to stop hating. just because datsik doesnt produce stuff like the garbage guetta puts out doesnt mean his MUSIC isnt just as good.

  • Aaronseimandi

    110? dubstep? BITCH PLEASE…

  • datsik is a good man

    can’t stand his music, but some really cool tips. i like how he emphasizes the importance of resampling

  • DJDstortion

    *And of course Datsik for sharing these wonderful production tips.

  • DJDstortion

    DJTT I love you. You are my lover, fatherly figure, and friend all in a bundle. Without you and my other lover, Live, I’d be lost and alone.

  • PsyEntz


  • itsbentheboy

    this was pretty interesting to hear as im trying to do more producing. seeing his methods being just so obvious, but kinda taboo. nice to hear that not everything is necessarily “off limits” 

    that you can use non professional stuff and make something out of it, and also do the professional route, but make your workflow simple to play on.

  • Anonymous

    Terrible music, just not my style… but interesting interview, and as always great production by DJTT.

  • PanPan

    For all the people complaining about the sound, this video shows how a dubstep producer actually puts time and thought into making this “horrible” sound.

    Give credit where it is due.

  • Jake

    I notice everyone hating on Datsik for some of his methods…
    It’s called a jumping off point. He uses randomize to get a fresh start and
    then modifies the sound from there. If anyone has ever attempted to
    produce their own music without sampling other music, you know it’s a
    very involved and tedious process. Randomizing stuff can help you
    discover new methods and ideas.

    “let he who is without sin cast the first stone”

    i.e. as soon as you can produce and DJ as well as Datsik, then you can
    talk shit, until then, shut up and gets ta practicing your craft and
    quit trolling…

    • Jake

       Also, why does everyone feel the need to critique DJTT. They are doing us all a GIANT favor. If you don’t like what they are doing for you, go find another sick blog with a ton of info about digital DJing… oh wait, that’s right. There isn’t one.

      • Cake

        Digital DJ Tips? Digital DJ Tools? DJWorx (the new Skratchworx, which probably provides the best equipment of any dj site); Also, if we all abided by the ‘let who he is without sin cast the first stone’ bullshit, constructive criticism wouldn’t exist.

        • Jeremy Searight

          djworkz? which only provides news and product reviews??…no tutorials,no custom made products let alone any kind of products,no interaction/promoting dj controllersim,no extensive resources like dubspot or native instruments….sounds like djworkz is the best alternative to djtechtools…. lmao!! btw people proclaiming that dub is easy to produce and call it crap is not considered constructive criticism.

          • calkutta

            DJWORX is riding in the ‘coat-tails’ of DJTT…like greatly stated above…unless you suck gizmo’s ego ‘or genitals’…he will black-list you if you dont ‘agree’ with the all knowing gizmo over a wack review,that was here on DJTT 6 months earlier.yet has footage of him skratching on you tube that is below C- average.jus get with it ,San Francisco has been ahead of the game in almost everything in the WORLD…half the shit yall doing they created the shit….he obviously trolls here a lot…

      • Civ142000

        I don’t understand how people can ciritique something that is FREE!!!
        If you don’t like it, don’t read it. Its really simple

  • Steve

    Glad this interview is longer than some of the ones in the past – like actually hearing what incredible producers like DATSIK have to say as opposed to just cutting it out for a cooler-looking video

  • Jim

     Great video. Thanks.

  • Dansac

    Dubstep is awful to listen to …. so easy to produce tracks and churn out crap….!!
    my ears are bleeding…. !

    • Jake

       You’ve obviously never attempted to produce your own music.

    • Jeremy Searight

      its not easy and if you think it’s easy than your feeble attempt on creating a edm/dub track would sound worse than this 

  • Jeremy Searight

    not that surprised that he uses logic but i wouldnt use it,even if i had a mac.but anyone has info on 110? sounds interesting

    • Jake


      • Jeremy Searight

        oh go figure,lol.yeah moombahton is getting pretty big

        • Hugo Martinez

          And they said it was “dead” already. Funny huh?

          • Jake

            I’m noticing more & more dubsteppers getting into it. Dr. P, Datsik, Flux Pavilliion. Although it’s not a giant leap, it’s cool to see these guys crossing genres.

          • Jeremy Searight

            yeah moombahton and liquid dnb is taking over.i wonder what will be the next big anticipated genre

          • Robert Chung

            To be honest I don’t see their version of moombahton as “crossing genres” – ya it’s 110, but if a metal band played one song at 140 and another at 110, no one would think it different.
            Yes, it’s different than traditional 140-150 d-step, but c’mon the synths are basically equal. Not to be a hater on anyone, I just think it’s silly to make it into some huge movement. “When i listen to music, bpm and genres are the last thing i worry about.” – Netsky

    • Arcrunner

      a synth playing quater notes at 110 bpm equals triplet half notes at 140bpm.  instant integration; just move the drum loops around to shift perception.

  • Andrew Northern

    Troy is a super awesome guy.  When I played with him on Global we got to talk a ton about production and dj theory.  Back then he was playing using serato scratch live 2 cdj’s and an kontrol X1 for cue points and filters.  I was using the same kind of setup prior to that and I was trying to convince him to use an S1.  Very cool guy lots of good vibes!

    • Data Dude

       what’s a S1?

  • jayowi

    damn, great interview, expected him to be far more douchey. good stuff guys 😀

  • iwaiwa

    Here’s a (slow moving) but good video on showing what Massive’s Performer is:

    Massive Performer – Advanced Bass Techniques

  • RockingClub

    Thanks a lot DJTechtools for this video and especially for having a huge focus on both Djing AND PRODUCTION!

  • Woooooooooooo

    moombahton movement !!! 

  • Lylax


  • Karms

    Track at 3:30? 

  • Donmecz

     After all these years… NI Massive is still Front Line Artillery in Many a Producer’s Arsenal! DATSIK man YOU sir is a STRAIGHT G!!! and a huge inspiration to me!

    One Love from Deadmonton 🙂
    Keeps It Classy Sir!!!

  • Kaïou

    Yeah, nice to hear this guy talking about his music! I wish next interview would be Noisia 🙂

  • Chris Combe

    cool interview but absolutely horrible sounding music.. sounds like a transformer fucking kermit the frog.. guess I am guessing old.. sorry if I sound like a hater.. 

    • 110sucks

       i’ve seen that video, it’s a good one

    • moonunit

      cool story breh

    • Jeremy Searight

      dont be sorry,you just got old.Its a common occurrence for old people to scoff at new genres of music.

      • Safadao

        I see your point. Just play some straight-ahead jazz for most young people and see how they scoff ; )

        • Jeremy Searight

          actually im 20 and i enjoy various jazz genres/artists but i primarily enjoy the rippingtons. 😉

          • UltimateAwesomest

            You are the coolest guy ever. Bar none.

  • PanPan

    Awesome insight from dude, but video could be a little more fast past but def has the old skool djtt videos, either way…


  • victor kim

    best dubstep interview

  • Rutger Willems

    nice video!

  • swagstrangler

    it must be nice to not have to worry about DJing

    • cabdoctor

      Oh for sure.  Because making your own beats from scratch must be so much easier than making two songs go the same speed.

      • swagstrangler

        yeah because letting your VST randomize your automation is really doing a whole lot 

        • ShuffleSam

          i agree im more than a little disappointed in what dakstik revealed about his live performance and production in this video.. pretty lame if you ask me…

  • Maze

    The Performer? Can anyone tell me what that is?

  • 11kyle Mac

    I… I… Im the First comment… I feel so happy! Oh yea and that was an okay article too… but yea first comment! Mom will be proud