It's Miami Music Week!
How do we know? 'Cause Denver party dude and record label boss Pretty Lights (AKA Derek Vincent Smith) confirmed it last night at the Fillmore Miami Beach, shouting: "It's Miami Music Week! That's what we call it now, right?"
Yes ... We think. There continues to be confusion, even among Crossfade contributors. (See here and here.) But after months of debate, including our own reader's poll on the subject (FYI, the winner was Ultra Week) and Opium Group's seemingly prescient adoption of the MMW name, it seems that Miami Music Week has officially entered the lexicon. There's even a Twitter hashtag now. @OxfordWords #mmw
Another indication it's Miami Music Week: The ravers, jamtronica kids, and Ultra-lites are overrunning the streets of both Downtown Miami and South Beach like chemically deranged locusts in furry boots, Hello Kitty backpacks, and ski goggles.
And yet the sidewalks and alleyways surrounding the Fillmore were conspicuously dead at 8:42 p.m. last night. Expecting a mad mob scene, we barely even found a smattering of orange tank tops and neon socks. The only people who even looked excited were two teen kids zipping past on Segways that'd been turned into speeding Space and Surfcomber ads.
The situation wasn't any crazier inside the theater. Tablet-wielding Pretty Lights Music member Paper Diamond had already drifted a few tracks deep into his set. And still, the place was pretty much fucking empty, except for a few media types, a girl with glowsticks, and some dude in Grateful Dead t-shirt twirling a set of neon nunchucks.
For a long depressing minute, we thought that maybe this would be another extremely dead night at the Fillmore Miami Beach. Was this party gonna get lost in the flood and flurry of it all like Simian Mobile Disco's Delicatessen party back on the mainland?
Uh, no. We should've known that all the Pretty Lights fans were just running a little late. We forgot how easy it is to lose track of time when you're out getting high, dancing in the parking lot, and prepping to party till you black out.
Soon, Pretty Lights labelmate, Michal Menert, had torn through a half-hour of '70s soul funk samples, post-disco grooves, and vintage hip-hop beats -- not to mention ripping off his purple-and-orange plaid longsleeve to reveal a sloganeering t-shirt that read: "Selling Out Is the New Keeping It Real."
The throng was thickening. And fast.
By 10:20 p.m., Menert's time was over and he was holding down hypeman duties, stonerishly shouting: "Get your fuckin' eardrums empty 'cause they're about to be full of some good shit!"
But Pretty Lights didn't come rushing out right away. He waited while the energy built and the crowd's wattage climbed. Smoke machines spat puffs of fog. Party people ate drugs. Drunks spilled drinks. A couple of raver chicks climbed up into one of the second-story light pits. And security freaked out.
Twenty minutes later, Pretty Lights finally showed up. And the whole place lost its shit.
A gang of 18-year-old dudes pogo-ed and punched each other. Blonde chicks in workout gear headbanged, popped ass, and fisted-pumped. And a grandfather with Einstein hair nodded approvingly.
The Fillmore was nowhere near capacity. There were only a few thousand bodies. But it felt fucking packed. Everyone bumrushed the stage while security tried to preserve the integrity of the reserved access floor space directly in front of the stage. (Only partiers wearing a wristband were supposed to be allowed inside that special circle.) But eventually, the authorities were outnumbered and it became impossible to keep people from streaking past the barrier.
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Don't worry, though. It wasn't chaos. This is Miami Music Week! The vibe was all positive and Pretty Lights kept the peace.