The third and final day of EDC was not for the feint of heart. After a brief respite during day 2, the energy was cranked up to 11 for the grand finale. The Las Vegas Speedway was flooded with thousands of attendees to see the likes of Paul van Dyk, GTA, Zeds Dead and R3hab rumble through their sets. Although most of the festivalgoers have been operating on limited sleep, there was a wave of liveliness that pulsated throughout the venue. Day 3 went out with a bang.
9:42 p.m.: There are a lot of couples at EDC. Some stay close to each other and enjoy the festivities in unison. But then there are those couples where one isn’t necessarily enamored with being anchored to their significant other. A pair of 20-somethings hanging out by the circuitGROUNDS, where Clockwork has just kicked off his set full of genre changes and mashups encompasses this element in its entirety. The guy – dressed in a tank top and shorts – has his and wrapped around the arm of his woman, who is sporting in Maple Leaf shaped pasties and a thong. Her eyes are surveying the landscape and she’s exchanging smiles with a group of shirtless men. His disdainful eyes are fixated on her every movement as he attempts to drag her away. Something tells me that this will be their last EDC festival as a unit.
10:15 p.m.: Although much has been made about the death of a 24-year-old man that is still being investigated after he collapsed outside of the festival Saturday morning, it’s also important to shed some light on the overwhelming sense of community that festivalgoers harness at EDC. For an event that houses over 120,000 people daily, it is remarkable how helpful everyone is. If someone falls ill, you won’t see a bunch of people standing around to capture it on their cameraphone. Instead, help is sought after. There are many, many examples of this that take place throughout the weekend but aren’t discussed. One such instance finds an inebriated young woman struggling to find her friends. Rather than leave her to her own drunken devices, a group of people help her by offering water and keeping her close until she has been spotted by her separated party. It could have gone much worse, but it didn’t.
10:33 p.m.: A group of girls are considerably overdressed. Clearly, this is their first EDC because a knee length dress and shoes that have any elevation are an awful idea. Hell, a t-shirt and a pair of cargo shorts can be considered overdressed here. It’s all about barely there swimsuits and showing as much skin as possible without being buck-naked. They’ll learn before the night is through.
10:45 p.m.: On Day 3, you become numb to the sight of cleavage, outlandish outfits and props. It takes a lot to capture your attention around these parts. But a guy holding up a “Fuck Her RightN’Da Pussy!” sign is, for all the wrong reasons, hilarious.
11:45 p.m.: If you haven’t had a chance to witness a Bassnectar set, EDC was the place to be. Holding court in front of a seemingly endless sea of fans at the cosmicMEADOW stage, the DJ’s ground shaking bass-laced dub-step set melted down the crowd. It’s truly amazing to see so many people dance in place without crushing the person next to them.
12:12 p.m.: A guy with a giant inflatable penis is running wild throughout EDC. It’s pretty difficult to miss this guy mobbing through the crowd. Every now and then, he’d slam the latex phallus into an unsuspecting festivalgoer’s head. Before they can get upset, his Cheshire cat grin and the fact that he walloped them upside the head with a penis dissolves any anger. It was arguably the best and most inappropriate prop at EDC.
12:25 p.m.: Calvin Harris’ set in the circuitGROUNDS is truly a sight to behold. If you didn’t arrive on time for his 11:45 p.m. set, you were stuck outside the open venue and had to use your imagination to figure out the madness going on inside. If you managed to get a spot inside the covered venue, then you were a part of some monumental madness. You would have thought that the U.S.A. won the World Cup with the way people roared at every new song Harris put on. When his collaboration with Florence Welch “Sweet Nothings” exploded from the earth rattling sound system, the thousands sang in unison as streamers burst into the air. Sometimes it is hard to believe that a guy who spins records can demand such attention.
12:31 p.m.: The backstage area for Harris’ set is a circus in its own right. Everyone is trying to get close to the stage and a pint sized security woman is doing her best to keep everyone in check. But when one of the VIP’s attempts to reprimand her for not letting him past, she loses her cool and delivers an outburst of four-letter words that causes the fellow to scurry away with his tail tucked between his legs.
12:53 p.m.: It’s at this point that you realize that we all are prisoners to Calvin Harris’ set. Even if you wanted to escape, the thousands of people crammed in the space made it nearly impossible. But with Dillion Francis already on stage at the cosmicMEADOW, a path must be made. After going against the currant of fans and making it to the stage area, a suited Francis is in the midst of annihilating his set. Unfortunately, I found out that I missed the new song Francis opened with. Doh!
1:16 a.m.: Over in the fairgrounds, the carousel has become a “who can ride the plastic horse with the most sexual energy” competition. Although there are quite a few women who seem as if they’ve done this a time or two (or 13), a pair of shirtless men in wizard hats are ravaging the poor horse beyond comprehension. I feel sorry for the next child that rides on the carousel.
1:27 a.m.: A guy in a full out Winnie The Pooh costume is going ape to Axwell /\ Ingrosso’s set in kinectFIELD. It’s hard to take your eyes off of him considering that he’s sweating his soul out and will likely to pass out at any minute. Anybody who has the balls to wear a furry costume in Vegas weather (and not get paid for it) needs to be either awarded a medal or checked into a mental institution.
1:40 a.m.: Over at the extraordinarily creepy bassCON stage that houses a 65-foot-tall Cyclops, Carnage is closing his set. His ultra aggressive demands for festivalgoers to put their “motherfucking hands in the air” is a bit jarring. But then he opts to play Drake’s “Trophies” and hands go up like they all have the answer to a teacher’s question.
4:00 a.m.: The war of attrition is finally coming to a close. Some have made their exodus while others fought until the very end just to see Dash Berlin’s trance set end the festival over at kineticFIELD. Making his home in the large cathedral setting with the sun peeking from behind the mountains, Berlin’s “Dragonfly” pounds through the crowd with a voiceover that states “We Are EDC.” It’s an appropriate closing to a memorable weekend. Until next time!