Coverage by: Samantha Chin & Spencer Wiley
Happy 2020 from the Southwest! Across the nation, fans helped ring in the new year while attending one of many music-focused events. Part of our team had the pleasure of attending Decadence Arizona, located in Phoenix, AZ which featured one of the most stacked lineups of the holiday season. Here’s what they had to say about this two-day party in the desert:
New Year, New Changes
Based on last year’s event feedback, a few major logistical changes were implemented by festival staff to ensure a much more enjoyable event for all attendees! More organized parking and security lines made it easy to enter, then once inside, the total size of the crowd was large but limited, so never daunting for festival-goers. Navigating the festival grounds was incredibly easy, as there were only three main areas where music was occurring, located next to one another. Although some fans missed the carnival rides and games that were not present this year, there were plenty of food and vendor options with the Weird & Wonderful Silent Disco adjoining one of the same buildings as a great option in between sets.
As we all know, stage set-up at any festival is key and this year, Decadence Arizona nailed it. The Grand Pavilion (main stage) was near perfect, as the stage faced an immense crowd, while not compromising sound with additional speakers near the back. The Royal Circus stage was set up similarly and boasted great production, including a large screen on the front of the decks, significantly enhancing the visuals (especially for artists like Space Jesus and Dab the Sky). Both tents/pavilions had large entrances from multiple angles which made jumping from stage to stage very convenient and helpful to see as many artists as possible. This year, the Weird and Wonderful team put on a solid display in The Playhouse with 3 silent disco DJs/channels, as well as a number of various vendors and cool decor including larger-than-life blowup mushrooms.
Time for Tunes
Night 1 had many of our favorite heavy-hitting sets including Skrillex, Illenium, Tchami b2b Malaa, Dillon Francis, Jamie Jones, Space Jesus, Dab the Sky and more. Night 2 consisted of big names like Diplo, Zeds Dead, Galantis Joyryde, Griztronics, as well as others. Our team’s favorite set of the festival was Illenium and his live band consisting of Dabin, Said the Sky, Day Gatsby and Annika Wells. Illenium always sets the bar high so it came as no surprise when he took the crowd on a seamless 90 minute melodic journey — of course, with grimier dubstep tracks sprinkled in between to make sure everyone was happy. Needless to say, we definitely had to crawl out of love by the end!
Top 3 Unexpected Favorites from the Festival
- BARDZ – What impressed us most about BARDZ was his insane ability to jam out so effortlessly on the guitar and drum pads while also bringing along the feely vibes (much like Illenium). Although he played earlier in the evening, we bet BARDZ will continue to play large events at even better set times throughout 2020.
- Decadon – Decadon had a similar feel, as he killed it on the guitar while throwing down one of the hardest, heaviest sets of the festival. From start to finish, Decadon brings the heat and is another name we know will only continue to blow up this year.
- Gerry Gonza – Gerry wowed us by belting out beautiful notes behind his upbeat house music. We were thoroughly impressed with his singing and high energy that could be heard across the entire festival grounds. Talk about heavy-hitting talent!
The Midnight Celebration
A unique experience was had by all as midnight approached on December 31st! Festival-goers witnessed an incredibly high-energy, sing-along set from Galantis, then many stuck around The Grand Pavilion stage to see Joyryde with the anticipation of balloons, confetti and more. Unfortunately, there was a mechanism malfunction with the balloons so the celebration didn’t go as planned. People were disappointed but by no means did this take away from Joyryde’s incredible set that followed. Afterwards, the music flowed into an extremely creative, head-banging performance by Griztronics who brought it hard until the end!
We would definitely recommend Decadence Arizona to anyone in the Phoenix area, as well as those who enjoy traveling for music. Congratulations to Decadence Arizona on selling out their successful, entertaining 2-day NYE festival! We can’t wait to party into a new year with them again in the future.