Why You Should Go to an EDM Festival Even If You Don’t Like EDM

I went to the Moonrise Festival in Maryland this summer, and it was the best experience of my life so far. It's a new rave festival located right in Baltimore at the Pimlico Race Course. I could talk about Moonrise for hours, and this festival is the reason I'm trying to convince others to go.

This was the first EDM festival I've ever been to, and it's a lot different than other music festivals like Governor’s Ball or Firefly. First of all, it’s EDM (electric dance music), and it's bumping non-stop. Secondly, the pace of music is faster, which makes it more exciting and unique. There's also a concept that's recognized only at rave festivals, called PLUR - which stands for Peace, Love, Unity, and Respect. Many ravers that go to these festivals have adopted this as part of their lifestyle. The reason PLUR happens at these festivals is because all of the people love the music, so everyone just connects as though they’re in sync.

Picture this: the music is playing, the bass is bumping. Lights are shooting through the sky-like laser beams. You look around and there are thousands of people, and you can’t even see where the crowd ends. You're literally next to your best friends, and even strangers become your best friends. You feel adrenaline rushing through you as the music plays, and all you can think about is nothing. You feel endless excitement and don’t want the night to end, but when it ends, you're still joyous that it even happened and you just want to keep dancing.

At every concert or music festival that I’ve been to, I’ve always seen a fight break out or someone crying because they lost their phone, or even someone fighting with a stranger for pushing their way closer to the front of the stage - but this didn’t happen at Moonrise. I think it’s because of the peace, love, unity and respect everyone has for each other at these festivals. Everyone minds their own business and lives in the moment. One girl I met told me that her friend passed away, and as we were watching Galantis, she said her and her friend’s favorite song was "Gold Rush." As the song started, everyone screamed. We all held hands, danced and even cried; it was the most breathtaking thing. Another thing that was interesting was the amount of Penn State fans I saw there. As the music played, you could just hear the We Are chant overpowering the music and Penn State flags waving in the air as the lights radiated colors throughout the sky. 

Now, if you’re still thinking about why you should go to an EDM festival if you don’t even like music, I’ll use my friend as an example. He never listened to EDM music before this, and now he does. Not only is it because of PLUR, but another also because of the group dynamic we experienced the whole time. A good group dynamic is necessary for this kind of event; how you interact and vibe with your group can make or break your experience. If someone’s not having a good time, the group will hype them up; all you need is a group dynamic that's fun and inspiring. My friend enjoyed this crazy, out-of-the-box experience because everyone around him loved the music, and all he could do was love it, too. 

Another example of how group dynamics improve the experience is how my friend almost didn’t go to the festival. While driving to Maryland, my friend got into a minor fender bender and freaked out because, obviously, he was thinking, “Oh no, my parents are going to freak out”, and, "Oh no, I have to pay for this.” Instead of turning around and going home, however, we, as a group, convinced him to stay. He ended up having the time of his life because our group helped him stay worry-free and made him feel loved. When the weekend ended, he'd forgot about that small issue on the road and said, “Wow, I just remembered that I have to get my car fixed!”

If you’re still not understanding why you need to go to an EDM festival even if you hate the music, then I guess you’re just missing out on a great time. All I can say is that you will never experience anything like it; it's a place where everyone is the same and music is literally being worshipped as an out-of-this-world phenomena. Just remember to hydrate, be safe and stay with your friends! If you really hate yourself for reading this and think you wasted your time, listen to some Avicii and Swedish House Mafia - I swear you're in for a long ride.