The second year of EDC in Las Vegas was wild to say the least. As always, the Las Vegas Motor Speedway was chock-full of world-renowned DJs and producers, awe-inspiring art & light installations, festive carnival rides and almost 300,000 eager music fans. Get a feel of what EDC 2012 was all about with photos, video and more in this MetroWize-approved recap.
EDC Week Parties
The pools and nightclubs at Las Vegas' premier hotels and resorts are always packed in the summer. But during EDC week, the parties got an extra boost of energy with EDC's biggest DJs spinning at all of the Strip's hottest venues.
The night before the first day of EDC kicked-off, Insomniac got the city's EDM fans in the mood to party with a huge event at Orleans Arena featuring 12th Planet, Bassnectar, Borgore, Datsik, Excision, Fury, Knife Party, Noisia and Sigma. Bassnectar was a crowd favorite, throwing down hip-hop infused dubstep jams along side more laid back tracks like "Timestretch." As soon as Excision came on stage, the crowd went wild, holding up their arms in an "X" formation.
All weekend long, Sin City's pool parties were overflowing with lively EDM fans, bustling to get some sun and fun before a night of dancing at the EDC festival grounds. From Marquee Dayclub, to Tao Beach and Liquid Pool, the party was raging from sun up to sun down at these wet n' wild pool venues. Highlights include a high-energy set from Cazzette on Saturday at Aria's Liquid Pool as well as Avicii + Gareth Emery's epic 'Levels' set at Marquee Dayclub on Sunday.
Due to the early closure of EDC on Night 2, the nightclubs on the Strip were packed on Saturday night, as frustrated fans let out their anxiety by partying at Marquee Nightclub, TAO and Drai's After Hours. After party highlights included an extended DJ set from Kaskade at Marquee Nightclub, late night sets from Carl Cox and Richie Hawtin at Drai's After Hours, and special guest performances from Skrillex and Steve Angello at XS nightclub.
EDC wasn't all about partying. On Thursday, June 7th, the business executives, planners, artists and industry leaders who made EDC possible got together to discuss EDM as a culture and as a expanding worldwide business. Kaskade, Richie Hawtin, Steve Angello and other huge stars took part in the discussion of free parties, the term "EDM" and the future of dance music. Check out some quotes from EDMbiz below:
"In some ways [the EDM explosion is] a little bit scary. The challenge now is to work even harder to not let it slip through our fingers, and keep control. The people behind the scenes have matured; if this happened 20 years ago, we would have lost control. It needed to gestate." - Richie Hawtin
"There have been difficulties and some decisions to adjust along the way, but when you've got a format where the music has grown literally in two years from club level to arenas, we're going to have our challenges. We as leaders in the business are going to have to overcome working with our promoters to achieve that." - David Brady, Spin Artist Agency (Avicii's Agent)
"Maybe you should drop the 'D,' perhaps it tightens the spectrum too much. Not everything we do is danceable. Maybe it should be 'EM,' and leave it as open as possible." - Richie Hawtin
EDC Key Performances
• Steve Aoki + Afrojack - The two house music stars teamed up on night 1 to bring down the house with a back to back DJ set full of surprises. At one point, the duo called out female rapper Iggy Azalea who joined them for a climactic performance of her single "Beat Down," capped off by crowd-pleasing a stage dive. Steve Aoki returned at 4 am on Saturday night to play a surprise set for all the fans who were still inside the arena.
• Feed Me - UK house and dubstep mastermind, Feed Me, brought his seizure-inducing "teeth" on stage for a massive set filled with classic tracks and heavy new bangers.
• Calvin Harris - Though his set was cut short due to the wind on Saturday night, EDM fans were disappointed by Harris' "press-play" performance at EDC 2012. Rather than showcasing his vocals by singing live, Harris simply played out his most well known songs, throwing in a couple classic electronic tracks to try to add diversity.
• Kaskade - As a veteran of EDC and a long-time Vegas DJ, Kaskade did what he does best and made the crowd go wild with an epic mix of new and old Kaskade tracks.
• Knife Party - Former Pendulum DJs Rob Swire and Gareth McGrillin played an insanely heavy set for the bass heads and dubstep fiends at EDC, breaking out heavy-hitting tracks from their new EP, Rage Valley.
• Rusko - Rusko blasted the crowd with an eclectic mix of face-melting dubstep bangers and high-tempo dance tracks, giving the crowd a reason to celebrate before the wind brought the night to a close on Night 2 of EDC.
• Avicii - Despite being cancelled on Saturday night, Avicii returned on Sunday to perform a surprise DJ set for his masses of fans, chock-full of pyrotechnics and a blinding light show.
• Armin Van Buuren - The king of trance wouldn't let a little bit of wind derail his EDC performance - Armin returned to the EDC festival grounds on Sunday after having to cancelling his Saturday night performance. His surprise performance helped ease the frustration from the night before and brought EDC 2012 to a successful close.
Night 2 of EDC was brought to an early close when officials shut down music at 12:30 am due to 40 mph winds at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Officials believed that the high winds were capable of wreaking havoc on the stages and installations and did to avoid putting anyone in danger, evacuated the Las Vegas Motor Speedway around 1:00 am. Unfortunately, sets from Calvin Harris, Avicii, Dub Fire, Tiesto, Markus Shultz and Armin Van Buuren had to be cancelled or cut short due to the wind. Fans who bought single-day tickets for Saturday were allowed back on Sunday, causing a bit of overcrowding and traffic issues around festival entrances and exits.
Light & Art Installations
As always, Insomniac spared no expense to make the festival grounds at EDC 2012 come alive. Amazing art installations, fire sculptures, costumed carnival performers and wild lasers + LED light shows complimented the throbbing and grinding of the massive bass from each of the main stages.
An epic fireworks show gets the crowd amped on Day 3 of EDC 2012.
Photo Credit: Kirvin Doak Communications | Rukes | Erick Kabik