A few miles off the highway in the heart of Orlando a gathering of neon and hard candy came together last week in an explosion of sound, lighting, and fried food known simply to the pilgrims who journeyed from all over Florida as EDC. For the unaware this abbreviation stands for the Electric Daisy Carnival. A 2 day festival that embraces electronic music and ties in the essence of family and community that is indicative of a state fair or carnival. Thanks to ElectroJams I got the opportunity to visit and see what kind of party the folks at Insomniac Events throws in Florida.
As I drove up to Tinker Field anticipation struck, but once I arrived I realized there was no parking garage in sight. Everyone just sort of used this massive park across the street that the city seemed to be collecting money for, so I figure when in Rome… The total came to 20$ for parking at the boy scout lodge, and was only about a quarter mile from the entry gates. Still however, a better option than working with the bums posing as parking tenants illegally taking people’s money and letting their cars get towed.
Walking up to the venue I recognized the line for entry was in usual fashion for Insomniac: a veritable maze of metal barriers and obstacles to overcome before entering into the promised land of electronic music. Mid-afternoon and the ID check alone took 45 minutes, followed by a labyrinth of guardrails and barriers zig-zagging for what seemed like forever dispensing people into the next stage of the course – the bag check line. After spending 30 more minutes in the bag check line, for which I had no bag to check, you approach to the last line of defense, the ticket check and routine fondle. Successfully completing this gauntlet however is not without its reward, as every adventurer knows, there is always plenty of “booty” to be had.
After completing the maze, I headed straight for the ID check (yes another) for my personal favorite wristband of any event, the “I DRINK TO LIVESTRONG” wristband, and it’s off to alcohol tent for proper introductions. Moderately priced and quite generous, I thought, the booze started flowing. My surprise for the drink price (and free water) was perhaps only surpassed by my intoxication. At which time I made an executive decision that it was in fact, Corn Dog Time! I was not prepared…
I approached the food dispensing area to be overwhelmed by the blissful aroma of fried sundries galore, and quickly asked for one of their soon to be determined delicious K9 on a stick. At 6 dollars for an entire foot of corndog I’ll admit I was a bit skeptical of how it might turn out, but was gleefully impressed upon realizing it truly was a giant breaded lance of perfectly cooked, beefy, flavorful dog that had been headed past just simply “warm”. Now it was really on…
I made my way over to the main stage to check out who was currently mesmerizing the masses, and as I was enjoying the awesome sound Danny Avila and Chris Lake were throwing down something unexpected happened. A strange funky sound seemed to take hold from the distance and like rats to the piper’s melody a mass, dare I say “bass” exodus began happening, toward the second stage. Comprised of mostly dubstep, a sound I normally don’t consider my musical flavor, the second stage became where the magic happened Friday evening. The undeniable talent of these men and women who came to entertain was apparent in spades. Liquid Stranger, Krewella, Figure, Crizzly all of them came to rage, and rage they did. The other stages quickly became ghost towns. I didn’t even go see Richie Hawtin or Loco Dice, and I fucking love them!
I could finally see why the dubstep movement has gained so much traction. Although, it is still amusing to watch so many half naked women dance like robots.
While the sun set the scenery came alive with lights whirling around everywhere, illuminating the landscape as they whooshed by. The delighted joyful screams of riders could be barely heard lost somewhere in the music. Mini roller coasters, ferris wheels, and teetering boats swinging around in such vibrant colors as if it were all an elaborate fairy tale land you could go to in your head on the proper dosage of some heavy shit and loud enough speakers. Michael Jackson would have shit his moonwalkers.
As the event came to a close anticipation for Borgore could literally be felt. With Bassnectar blowing people’s minds straight out of their brain housing groups, I started to check out some of the other patrons to see what colorful and imaginative costumes people made or bought for the festivities. Credit has to be given to these girls for how cold it was for them to be dancing about like it was a hot summer day. Not entirely sure how long I’d last in some Speedos or whities with tape covering my nipples, but I did just think of next year’s Halloween costume. Every time I turned around I was surprised by the creativity that went into some of these outfits. All attire was whimsical and unique while still adhering to one golden rule, less is more. I saw versions of both Princess Peach and Daisy that if they had been in the originals I’d probably be playing right now if I wasn’t writing this. There was Sailor Moon, Sailor Mars, and more hot nurses than could you could stuff into a hospital. I thought to myself at one point if I did believe in an omnipotent invisible man, this perhaps could be what is considered heaven.
The night for me drew down at the end of the festival, but stories of cops breaking up righteous after-parties all across central Florida found their way to me in the following days of EDC. I have to give a big thank you to the people at Insomniac who made this event possible and to the city of Orlando for a job extremely well done. An even bigger thanks goes to Electrojams for without them the day for me wouldn’t have been possible at all, much love.