Best Raves to Ring in the New Year 2024

Best Raves to Ring in the New Year 2024

BY Fifty Grande Editors | December 22, 2023

New Year’s Eve is fast approaching and network executives have forbidden Andy Cohen from repeating his iconic end-of-2020 performance: getting drunk on live TV and hurling insults as the ball drops in Times Square. That means you have to actually leave the house to have a good time, and the only thing that could match the energy of Cohen’s slurred rants is thousands of watts worth of energy pulsating from behind a DJ booth. I’m talking raves. I’m talking raves with climbable pirate ships. I’m talking raves with aliens and “Weird and Wonderful” dancers and Skrillex. Fifty Grande’s reporters have the scoop on six huge, end-of-year raves around the country, all with varying degrees of chaos. Remember, in the controversial words of Cohen, “I’m sorry, but if you’re watching ABC, you’re watching nothing.”

Decadence Colorado

Denver, Colo. 
Any New Years Eve event is a big ask. There are just too many competing shindigs thrown by friends excited to show off their hors d’oeuvres, not to mention the bucket list fetes you’ve said you would attend for years. (The famous ball drop of Times Square?) But electronic music fans should have no qualms rejecting it all for something greater, something raver, something by the name of Decadence Colorado 2023. Where else do you get to wear neon pantsuits and lie down on glowing, flower-shaped lounge chairs while listening to some of the biggest names in the EDM scene drop? Neither your aspiring DJ friends, nor Times Square, has that kind of cache. This year’s headliners are Skrillex, Zeds Dead, Fisher, Illenium, Steve Aoki and John Summit. If DJs you already saw at three different Electric Daisy Carnivals don’t entice you, as Redditor jmaze215 complained nearly a year ago (“if you’ve seen one of these line ups, you’ve seen them all, it’s literally the same dJs at every event” they moaned)  know the festival organizers do include emerging artists that are stretching the genre. – Hanna Vioque


San Bernardino, Calif. 
Raveland is under attack. A stereotypically gray-bodied racee of bug-eyed aliens is touching down at exactly midnight to put an end to human grooviness. Why, you ask? Listen, the world-building at these Insomniac music festivals isn’t exactly what they’re famous for, but it does give you a convenient excuse to strap on some tin foil, dust off grandpa’s old space suit and moonwalk to the freakiest EDM west of Roswell. Countdown sets the scene with four themed stages: The Mothership, The Nebula, Area 51 and Twilight Zone. Between these stages are the usual food vendors, merch booths and, yes, aliens. Disturbingly well-costumed aliens. Imagine the apocalyptic UFO fever of Y2K set to the upbeat futurism of Deadmau5, who will take the stage this year. Countdown 2023 will also have performances by The Chainsmokers, Tiësto, Porter Robinson, Alison Wonderland, Nero and Sofi Tukker. – Jeremiah Jenkins

Photo courtesy of Fresh Start

Fresh Start

San Francisco, Calif. 
Fresh Start 2023 is three days of high-quality EDM/House fest action at a 40,000 square-foot music and art venue in the heart of San Francisco. The Midway hosts this “cosmic oasis” themed festival for New Years weekend, where headliners, which for 2023 include Louis The Child, Tchami & Malaa and Kaskade, play outdoors at the massive “block party” on the corner of Michigan and Marin Streets.  Expect the main stage performances to feature blowout visuals, smoke, glitter and psychedelic animations. You can also browse art installations, eat gourmet bites and admire the ravers’ outfits among the four different stages. One stage, Gods & Monsters, hosts the Saturday Warm Up Session where the DJ plays at crowd-level. You’ll also run into quirky event fixtures, like a giant, climbable pirate ship deck, for fans of elevated surfaces. – Hannah Kent

Photo courtesy of Disco Donnie Presents

Lights All Night

Dallas, Texas
An EDM festival that lives up to its name, Lights All Night — the longest-running EDM festival in Texas — will return to Dallas in December for two nights of electronic music raves, New Year’s Eve celebrations and sprawling LED light displays. This place has everything: DJs, neon, leather harnesses, women in spandex one-pieces, men in spandex one-pieces and glow-in-the-dark hula hooping. Housed in Dallas Market Hall, Lights All Night 2023 has pulled considerable acts in the EDM scene including Skrillex, an artist known even outside of the scene, in addition to Peekaboo, Subtronics, Acraze and many more. – Anna Montagner

Photo courtesy of Relentless Beats

Decadence Arizona

Avondale, Ariz. 
There is no shortage of EDM events, especially those on or around New Year’s Eve, but what separates Decadence Arizona from the rest is their intense stage and event production. For its ninth year, the theme is the sky realm and the lineup will have some of the bigger names in electronic music, ranging from upbeat house artists like Steve Aoki (of the Pursuit of Happiness remix) and Chris Lake, to harder headbangers like Black Tiger Sex Machine and Subtronics. The festival’s “Weird and Wonderful” performers will float around the festival grounds — the Phoenix Raceway — and add a touch of personal magic to the world already awash in color and lasers. – Sarah Cortina

Forever Midnight Las Vegas

Las Vegas, Nev. 

If you thought we needed another EDM fest, good news is here. Music promoter Insomniac will debut a new EDM two-day music festival over New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas. Situated where two of the major Las Vegas attractions used to be – the world’s largest immersive art experience Transfix and outdoor show Enchant – Forever Midnight will bring an international lineup of techno and house, topped off with indie to two stages. You can catch New York City’s legacy kids The Martinez Brothers, Grammy-nominated Australian producer Fisher, a staple name of the house/techno scene, as well as Dennis Cruz, known for weaving wide musical influences with his deep techno beats. Solomun, a warmer underground techno music, and Parisian multi-instrumentalist and eclectic DJ, Chloé Caillet will also make an appearance. – Anna Montagner