Performing contemporary popular electronic music commonly incorporates audio playback, either from digital audio files or vinyl records. A software environment (Deviate) has been constructed, which employs generative methods for performance and control and allows new note level musical material to be created in real-time. This discussion fOcuses on the contextual issues of using and designing this system, with regard to contemporary methods for computer-based and laptop performance, and critiques of these approaches. Standards for performance environment design and practice are introduced, which outline primary areas to be addressed in the construction of a performance environment such as Deviate. Audio examples of Deviate are located online, at http://www.cetenbaath.com/cb/about-deviate/.