Without a doubt, Berne's Sam Geiser has skills. His 2008 offering for the Fuse mix series documents his energetic, dense and speedy mixing style—by default on three decks simultaneously. Deetron's expert sleight-of-hand owes to his early days as a hip-hop DJ: "At 15, scratching was the thing," he recalls. "But as soon as I started throwing Todd Terry records into my mixes, it became a whole different story. That stuff sounded so fresh, we didn't know what to call it then, it sounded like hip-hop, but different. Hip-hop with another beat."
Four-to-the-floor, indeed. It was the sound of Detroit that became the main well of inspiration, with anthems like E-Dancer's "Pump the Move" sparking the flame. In the late '90s, it was hard-edged loop techno, leading to releases on labels such as Carl Cox's Intec, Dave Angel's Rotation and Belgium's Music Man. The uncompromising 2003 banger "Don't You Know Why?" propelled him into the crates of his personal idols Jeff Mills and Robert Hood, while 2006 saw the arrival of Deetron's solo album, Twisted, in which he toned down the action for home-listening compatibility while staying faithful to his old-school flavoured aesthetic.
His muscular productions tend to unfold in a dramatic, suspense-laden rush. As a DJ, he's much the same way: "I want my sets to build and build and then break it down altogether. Even if that's risky. Honestly, I'm just bored of too many uniform, functional DJ sets." Does he hold any other ambitions as a record spinner? "Beat mixing remains a constant challenge, it's just what I love doing. A colleague recently asked me why I still bother to use the pitch faders. Well, that would be like asking a guitar player, 'Why are you still plucking the strings?' Beat mixing is one of the reasons I'm at this game. I guess the day I stop beat mixing, is the day I call it quits."