The 15th annual Electric Daisy Carnival took place on the inside of a 1.5 mile long race track at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway this past weekend, and ushered in a community of over 200,000 festival-goers in a span of three, art-enthused, bass-pumping, pour-your-heart-out on the dance floor nights, reminding those who participated under the Las Vegas sky -attendees and staff alike- that life is about experience, passion, and music.
The festival consisted of one main stage and three ancillary stages (though all three could pass for main stages at any other event!) that hosted a vastitude of talent from all around the globe and music as diverse as the multitude of nations represented by the DJ’s. Mau5trap records phenom and E.D.C. newcomer, 23-year-old Skrillex, brought his eclectic style to the Neon Garden (picture the soundtrack to the apocalypse), mashing up his signature vocal melodies with an onslaught of heavy drums and womps and wobbles as the crowd poured out in to the surrounding stages to watch his performance. Newcomers Porter Robinson and Zedd proved that age is just a number as the 18-year-old producer/DJ’s hit the stage with their high-energy, innovative electro/house grooves, while fellow youngster, 21-year-old Avicii, took his melodic, feel-good, piano-driven tracks to the main stage.
Veterans to the scene like Holland’s Tiesto, Afrojack, and Laidback Luke brought the dirty dutch and big-house bangers to the main stage and Swedish based house trio, Swedish House Mafia, sent a riddle of life through the spines of attendees with their heavy-hitting, huge sound. Half-step enthusiasts packed the Bass Pod to see England’s finest bass duo Scream and Benga slang dubstep as well as dubstep pioneer, Rusko, drop his raw and evocative sound. 47-year-old trance forefather, Paul Okenfold, lit up the main stage with his deep, hard house tracks, while French born producer/DJ David Guetta (“Sexy Bitch,” “Memories,” “I Gotta Feeling”) brought a more mainstream sound that everyone could sing along too.
Socially conscious, Santa Cruz born producer/DJ, Bassnectar, brought the bass with his forceful sound and fusion of familiar and unknown songs, while fellow Americans, Grammy-nominated Wolfgang Gartner, and Los Angeles based duo, Crystal Method, held their own respectively. Last, and certainly not least, Chuckie, hailing from Suriname in South America (Dutch), brought the energy with his enthusiastic stage presence and never-let-down set, while Swedish natives, Dada Life, brought the power with a fat, electric sound, along with their signature champagne and bananas . . . oh, did I mention a marching band too?
Insomniac Events didn’t skip a beat on this one; from the art exhibitions to the stage décor, from the carnival rides to the stage performers, Electric Daisy Carnival went to great lengths to make this festival a true experience of artistic expression. Whether it was Go-Go dancers, fire twirlers, trampoline gymnasts, clowns, men on stilts, a giant Ferris wheel, or gigantic glow in the dark snakes on wheels, the festival never let down on bringing the carnival experience to full fruition.
Art installations like towering flowers and LED lights that create optical illusions made for a place where attendees could gather and meet new people. For each headliner, fireworks comparable to any Fourth of July event were lit and turned the Nevada sky into a parade of lights. To top it all off, the event had skydivers equipped with LED lights descend from the sky as festivalgoers below mused at the dancing lights above.
Whether it was the DJ’s or the performers, the sound and lighting guys or the stage managers, the fans or the security guards, the pyrotechnic guys or the skydivers, everyone was having fun. For one weekend in the Las Vegas desert, Electric Daisy Carnival brought together professionals of all careers in a communal effort to bring happiness and entertainment to those in attendance through the medium of music. Consider the Electric Daisy Carnival everyone’s destination for individuality and self-expression.
Photos by Ryan Espinoza