NYE is always a spectacle, so there are tons of events to choose from. You can go the champagne flute route, the exclusive club route, the house party route, or you can go all out for a festival-style event. This writer decided to hit up Atlanta for Bassnectar‘s annual NYE event, which had moved from a 360 arena format to a massive convention center space.
Having mostly attended outdoor festivals and only a handful of indoor EDM events, I was curious how the experience would translate. With an indoor event sound quality and temperature are quite important. Complicating matters was the impending freeze that Atlanta would be going through, so we all had to dress warmly on the way in. The Georgia World Congress Center is a truly massive space, but there was a major bottleneck getting people checked in. Security was actually quite efficient, but the convention spaces for the event were down at least 2 sets of escalators. These were small escalators only allowing for maybe 10 people at a time to ride them. The biggest issue with the long entry line is that nobody had any clue where to go or what was holding everything up. This lead to some people trying to find alternative routes.
Once we reached the space it was truly massive and temperature was not a problem, thankfully. However once again lines were very long for pretty much anything, so concessions were out of the question if you wanted a good spot for Bassnectar. There was a set of free water stations (with very cold water), but nobody knew about where they were and they could have been advertised well enough. Many people simply filled up at water fountains in the convention center during the wait to get in.
While there were those hiccups with lines, it all melted away once Lorin took the stage. He kicked if off with an epic intro using the score from Interstellar and then the next 2 hours were filled with intensity, bass, and and a massive amount of lasers. While some fans complained about sound quality, I managed to find a spot in the first third of the crowd relatively near the center so the sound and visual experience was truly awesome. It was incredible how awesome the production and experience worked with an indoor space like that, when some indoor spaces such as Miami’s Mana Wynwood are often much worse.
When the clock hit midnight and 2018 rang in the giant balloons dropped the rafters and were incorporated into the crowd. Despite the reputation for bad crowds, my own personal experience with the crowd was fine. All in all it was an incredible way to ring in 2018, and Bassnectar’s team has already responded to the issues with the lines. You’d be hard pressed to find a better New Year’s Eve event next year.