More than many other genres of music, when it comes to EDM, a gathering of fans are more similar to a community than a group of people with a common interest. (Exceptions apply.) That could be why when community issues arise, they seem to spread like wildfire and end up as a discussion on Reddit, Twitter, TikTok, Instagram, and more.
As a 31-year-old myself, who’s been going to shows since he was 18, and working in the scene since 24, I’ve had my fair share of people asking me how I still do it. The passion for the music doesn’t just disappear when you hit a number; sure, I go out less now than I did in my 20s, but you can still catch me front rail at smaller festivals and running into the crowd when I hear my favorite DnB track come on.
Rave influencers are really a mixed bag. And a lot of it depends on how deep and fresh into the fandom you are. For my jaded self, videos making fun of wooks might scratch an itch. For others, skits about rave moms might feel incredibly relatable. Others still might enjoy parodies of people on their first roll at a festival, asking random passersby for gum and water.
It gets universally cringe when we feel that someone from outside the community is trying to co-opt our world for their views. That being said, guys like Cherdleys, Trevor Wallace, and Blake Webber get a lifetime pass.
This one is so dependent on personal taste and frequency of shows that it’s hard to put commentary on. But the basic idea holds up to scrutiny — especially during a large artist tour when the music is time-coded to the visuals, there are certain inherent restrictions on how much a set can be changed from night to night. And if you like a set, you’ll be more likely to have fun seeing it again. It’s why recorded sets on YouTube still rack up tens of thousands of plays years after the event. If it’s good, we won’t mind as much.
Underground raves are actually not that cool
This one definitely nails the hot take question. Underground raves, as in true underground raves without a well-known (or insured) promoter that typically are spread via text and word of mouth, are few and far between these days. When you have professional sound and lights, and comparatively higher fees, artists are going to be less likely to play in a storage container out in the Mojave Desert.
But to the point that this user is making, there is no oversight. They are sometimes (not always) run without concern for health and safety and standard rules need not apply. You’re certainly going at your own risk, and the potential for a lifechanging time is there, but sometimes it’s not worth it..
Festivals today aren’t trash, it’s just your nostalgia running wild
I’m definitely guilty of this one, though I don’t think festivals today are “trash.” I’m just getting older and I can’t personally hang with the young kids anymore. That doesn’t mean that the events themselves are getting worse. There’s more diversity than before (though we still have a long way to go) and the stages are getting bigger and louder.
Sure, there’s elements of corporate greed at play in most festivals in certain aspects. But even looking at Insomniac, the biggest EDM promoter in the country, Pasquale has a long history of devotion to the scene and his vision reflects what the majority wants, not necessarily the most devoted among them.
Photo via Rukes.com