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Favorite ThisEDC Chicago 2013 Preview

Published: May 16, 2013
By: Robert Martin

EDC ChicagoStarting as a modest SoCal rave in 1997, Insomniac’s annual Electric Daisy Carnival has evolved to become the largest electronic dance music festival in North America. Now rooted in Las Vegas, EDC has been taken across the country for several events before its Sin City finale in June. This year marks the festival’s first appearance in the midwest as part of the proverbial “Road To Vegas.” Memorial Day Weekend (May 24-26), EDC lands in Chicago..err almost. EDC Chicago will actually take place at the Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois about an hour away from the city. Joliet city ordinances unlike those in Chicago the allow the party to run much later into the night with acts on until 4am each morning. This “go all night” element is an integral part of the EDC experience, and that wouldn’t be possible in the Windy City itself.  

With a lineup featuring the likes of Avicii, Tiësto, Kaskade, Sebastian Ingrosso, Feed Me, Above & Beyond, David Guetta, Hardwell, and dozens more amidst a massive full fledged carnival of lights and sounds, we’re more than willing to forgive the lack of a skyline at this so called “Chicago” event.


EDC Chicago is a strictly 18+ event that starts at 5pm each night and runs until 4am in the morning. 3-Day passes to the festival are $204.13 after fees with single day tickets priced at $100.40 after fees. A camping option is also available for $330.73 with adjacent campgrounds being provided directly next to the speedway. The campgrounds will open on Thursday the 23rd and that night will feature a special yet to be detailed pre-party for campers only.


For those looking to travel from the city, Isomniac is offering several shuttles that leave from key college campus locations (DePaul, Loyola, Harold Washington Library) around town. The shuttles leave for Joliet at 4pm and 6pm respectively and cost $61.53 for single day round trip rides or $156.48 for all three days.

Interactive Environment

Little is known about just what exactly EDC Chicago will look like. When Insomniac brought the festival to NYC  for the first time last year not one bit of the signature EDC production or theatrics were lost, and the same can be expected for Chicagoland Speedway. That means a cluster of fantastic carnival rides, amazing fireworks displays at night, and of course massive art installations that will blur the lines of real life and complete fantasy.

EDC ChicagoDance Green

Insomniac looks to be taking every step they can to make EDC Chicago as environmentally sustainable as possible. This includes using Biodiesel generators to fuel the majority of lights and electronics throughout the massive event. Free water will also be available throughout the festival grounds, that means no excuses for not staying hydrated and healthy!

Who to see

With over 100 artists on the lineup, there will be some serious decision making regarding who exactly to check out at the inaugural EDC Chicago, but we’ve got several suggestions if we may.


Trance and House music have a considerable presence at EDC Chicago and that will definitely make for some beautiful moments, but those looking to really turn up should consider trap’s mad man Brillz. His recent debut LP “Twonk” is a relentless force of bouncy melodies that will have every head in the crowd bumping. Bring your neck brace for the aftermath of this one.


Yet another sign that Sweden was destined to rule the world of EDM, Stockholm DJ duo “Cazzette” makes their Chicagoland festival debut at EDC. A unique and highly eclectic mix of heavy bass and house influences, the pair has proven their ability with some stellar remixes (Kanye West, Swedish House Mafia, and Lana Del Ray to name a few) alongside a solid set of originals all released exclusively through Spotify.


A collaborative effort between Washington D.C. natives Matt Nordstrom and Dave Nada, the aptly titled “Nadastrom” is here for one purpose: Moombahton. After all, the latter member created the genre that has taken dance music by storm himself. Nadastrom shows are about as high energy as it gets, and if these two have their feet planted on the ground for more than a moment, it’s only because the set it over.


Empire of the Sun:

Empire of the Sun is one of the more surprising acts to show up on the EDC Chicago bill. The Australian two piece is the closest thing the festival has to a “band,” but that may even be a stretch for these two. The live show is a dizzying mix of over the top theatrics and performance art. What would EDC be without dancing swordfish women anyways?

This may not be the cheapest option for a festival experience in the area, but EDC Chicago will be beyond memorable. We are very excited to see how the event fares its first year in the midwest, especially facing competition from three other major electronic dance festivals this summer in Chicago. In typical Insomniac fashion, a schedule has yet to be released, but regardless if you’re going for a single day or all three, EDC is jam packed with artists and events worth your time.

EDC Chicago lineup

Tags: ElectroHouseHip HopTranceLivetronicaDowntempo