4×4=12 (pronounced Four Times Four Equals Twelve) is the fifth album by Canadian electronic artist deadmau5 (his third mainstream album). It was released worldwide (except in the U.S.) on 6 December 2010 through Virgin Records. The album was released in the United States on 7 December 2010 through Ultra Records. The album's name references an incident on deadmau5's Ustream channel, where he mistakenly said that his live setup of four banks of four "equals twelve". On 30 November 2011, the album received a nomination at the 54th Grammy Awards for Best Dance/Electronica Album.
The album was generally well received among music critics. Metacritic assigned it an average score of 66 out of 100, based on 13 reviews. Will Hermes of Rolling Stone touted the album writing, "4×4=12 is audacious, mixing generic house grooves with electric fare." Many reviewers praised the album for its universal appeal to a diverse audience. Annie Zaleski of Alternative Press wrote, "The collection is mostly instrumental tracks, ranging in style from insistent progressive house to watery techno…Without vocals to provide structure, 4×4=12's variety stems from deadmau5's sense of dynamics and pacing, as well as his diverse sonic influences". However, some critics seem to be wanting more from the artist whose man-behind-the-mask intrigue may be upstaging his albums. Allison Stewart of The Washington Post states, ""4×4" is a breakthrough album that doesn't feel like a breakthrough album. Not accessible or crowd-pleasing enough to court non-electronic music fans, not adventurous enough to satisfy die-hards, it pleases, but it rarely dazzles." Dave Simpson of The Guardian shared in Ms. Stewart's sentiments by noting, "Undoubtedly, the deadmau5 appeal hinges on the astonishing live show in which Zimmerman performs in a giant, illuminated mouse's head, but it wouldn't work without his tracks. His third production compilation again shows that he is a master at doing simple electro house music very well: humongous beats and basslines blend with straightforward chord progressions and, when interest may start to lag, sonic diversions."
4×4=12 proved to become a breakthrough commercial success for deadmau5 when it became his first studio album to chart on the Billboard Top 200. It eventually peaked within the top fifty of the Billboard Top 200 and has spent over 100 weeks on the chart. It also narrowly missed the top spot of the Billboard Electronic albums, reaching number two. Internationally, the album was received warmly as well. It managed to chart within the top forty of various European nations, replicating and in many cases eclipsing the chart success of his previous efforts. In the United Kingdom, however, the album achieved a lower peak compared to his previous albums which all entered the top twenty, missing the top forty altogether.
Note: If you get the international mixed CD version of the album and get the track names on iTunes,
it states "A City In Florida" as "City In Florida", "Cthulhu Sleeps" as "Cthulhu Steps" and "Raise Your Weapon" as "Raise Your Weapons".
"Some Chords" was the first official single from the album and was released on 3 May 2010 exclusively on Beatport. It was featured as a track in the game The Sims 3 as well as on an episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, where deadmau5 played himself in the episode. "Animal Rights" was the second single and was a collaboration with Wolfgang Gartner. It was released exclusively on Beatport on 6 September 2010 and followed by general release on 17 September 2010. The third single was "Sofi Needs a Ladder", which became available on 31 October 2010. It features vocals from SOFI and is the highest charting UK single from the album, reaching #68. "Sofi Needs a Ladder" is also featured on the soundtrack of The Hangover Part II. The song is played in the club scene of the flashback. The track also features in the game Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit.
Deadmau5 was the house DJ at the 2010 MTV Video Music Award show hosted by Chelsea Handler in Los Angeles, California on 12 September. He opened the event with "Some Chords", then as the night progressed, he played "Sofi Needs a Ladder", "Cthulhu Sleeps", and "Animal Rights".
"A City in Florida" was featured in the 2011 video game Saints Row: The Third, appearing on the in-game radio station "97.6 K12 FM", primarily associated with the cyberpunk "Deckers" gang.
Deadmau5 also performed on the Grammy Awards 2012; first he performed with Foo Fighters ("Rope" deadmau5 Remix) and then played "Raise Your Weapon". On the same day he revealed two new Mau5heads.
A new DVD, Meowingtons Hax 2k11 TORONTO, was released in February 2012, which includes live tracks from his performance in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, during his Meowingtons Hax Tour.