(Guest Review by Carmen)
The 2,593 guests from around the world on the first ever Mad Decent Boat Party (that was set sail for the Bahamas) certainly got their money’s worth this past weekend. As a passenger, if you failed to see your favorite artist casually walking around the ship, you were either sleeping the whole time or your favorite artist is Diplo. Fortunately for those who don’t fit either description, what seemed like the rest of the 50 artists set to perform on the 4-day, 3-night trip swarmed the boat at nearly all hours and graciously took picture after picture with enthusiastic fans.
Let’s just say that it became immediately clear that this would not be your average music festival when, on the very first night, one of the headlining DJs (we won’t name names) missed his set after passing out from over-imbibing. In fact, this same thing occurred to several other performers throughout the trip, but no gripes here—the surprises certainly made up for the absences.
And the surprises were aplenty. iLoveMakonnen, famous for his hit “Tuesday” was unexpectedly on the boat and performed with Major Lazer (as well as a personal DJ he brought along with him) on a private island located near Nassau. “DJ Hanzel,” Dillon Francis’s alter-ego, played a 30 minute set on the pool deck while casually smoking a cigarette. Immediately thereafter, Skrillex flew into the Bahamas and appeared with Diplo to perform as Jack Ü. Moreover, Skrillex then went on to play alongside Zeds Dead during one of their impromptu after-parties, and he also appeared during Flosstradamus’s Friday night set, which was arguably the craziest of the weekend. The crowd was so wild during this particular performance that event staff started refusing entry to patrons, which is too bad for many, because this was truly a once-in-a-lifetime, no-holds-barred performance.
As if that wasn’t enough, Diplo, Jillionaire, Riff Raff, and other artists appeared alongside Flosstradamus, and in the middle of the show, Diplo randomly announced to the already-impaired crowd that he had a baby that night (sources confirm that his ex, Kathryn Lockhart, indeed gave birth to their son that night), crying “Shout out to all the babies out there! If you were ever a baby, make some noise!” He was met with a booming applause, and the proud new daddy even took it upon himself to get a little friendly with the crowd during “Mosh Pit,” diving off the stage into an eager mass who passed him around like a king. The set culminated with fans bumrushing the stage, and those lucky enough to get up there enjoyed the rest of the set alongside some of the top artists in the world. What a trip!
The following day, fans took a boat to a private island where Thomas Jack, Flosstradamus, Major Lazer, and Dillon Francis performed. Flosstradamus appropriately began their set with somewhat low-key house music, which was welcomed by the still somewhat hung-over crowd. During Major Lazer’s set, Diplo announced that he had to leave early and thanked all of the fans for the wild week. We wished the new father all the best!
The silver lining of Diplo’s early departure occurred when more than seven artists showed up for the Q&A session that had been scheduled only for him. For over an hour, fans got the chance to direct their questions towards Jillionaire and Walshy Fire of Major Lazer, Gent & Jawns, iLoveMakonnen and his companion DJ, Skrillex, and for a brief moment even the infamous Riff Raff. After stumbling onstage to steal the microphone from Skrillex and giving an impromptu freestyle (most of which was incomprehensible), Riff Raff agreed to answer three questions, the first of which was, “What are you on right now?” With little hesitation, Riff cleverly replied, “Oh man, I’m on –I’m on the Mad Decent yacht party,” to which the crowd erupted in cheers. Got to hand it to him for remaining cool under fire—with answers like that he could run for office!
Later that night, Skrillex, Flosstradamus, DJ Snake, Jillionaire and Walshy Fire energetically took over the last set of the trip, which had been scheduled to be Diplo’s time slot. It was a fast and furious final performance.
To say that this music festival was legendary and like none other is certainly an understatement. Hopefully we will see you next year!