LIC Miami 2016 –Raging EDM Paint Party Experience Kingdom by Kingdom
By Maliha Ahmad
Most Miamians still remember LIFE IN COLOR as DayGlow, which was actually started in 2006 by four students from Florida State University. Now, LIFE IN COLOR, or LIC has been named the “World’s Largest Paint Party” and for good reason. Every year, LIC Miami continues to grow bigger and bigger. This year, T-mobile presented the festival’s first U.S. Big Bang Tour stop in Miami at Sun Life Stadium on Saturday, January 16th. With over 25,000 fans dressed in all white, only to leave the festival grounds covered in paint from head to toe. LIC Miami 2016 brought the Kingdom theme to life with four elaborate music stages: Rage Kingdom, Underwater Kingdom, Sphere Kingdom, and Spirit Kingdom.
I remember my first LIC Miami in 2013 when it was still at the convention center and this year attending the festival at the 160 arced Sun Life Stadium clarified how necessary it has been for this type of event to be outside. 2016 brought a great production, ample space for tons of attendees, more comfortable paint blasts, and headliners like, Jack U, Steve Aoki, Zeds Dead, FLOSSTRADAMUS, 3LAU, and , special guest Big Sean.
Rage Kingdom was the main stage at LIC Miami 2016 designed as the lion head (king of the jungle) with lights shining through its eyes and mane. Underwater Kingdom was a huge tent designed with sea creatures crawling through. Coincidently, it started pouring rain hard right before FLOSSTRADAMUS’ set and everyone came rushing in for cover. People really began to bring out their inner animal as fans began to climb up on the poles, wailing their arms around and sharing their excitement with the whole crowd.
Sphere Kingdom was that one stage, crucial to any festival, with all the locals and up-and-coming artists, so attendees could get their taste of something a little different along the way. Spirit Kingdom was probably my guiltiest pleasure. Every time I walked by I couldn’t help but to be sucked in and soak in that energy. The music was totally experimental and truly for the hippie crowd. With a fire simulation above the caged designed stage, there was heat emitting onto every fan’s skin as they danced around in circles with the spirit of the jungle inside them.
Aside from the stages, LIC wouldn’t be the same without the Ferris wheel and zip lining, which added another element for fans to enjoy. I’d have to say some of the night’s best sets were from Zeds Dead, Keys N Krates, NGHTMRE, JackU, and Troyboi. NGHTMRE took the tent stage to a whole new vibe while seamlessly going from all our favorite hits from “Antidote” to “Reload” to “Deep Down Low” in the same 20 minutes. Troyboi brought up beyond amazing hip-hop dancers to the stage and it was clear that he was having blast himself with tracks like Flume’s Holding on”, “Roll up the grass”, and his own version of Snoop’s “Drop it like it’s hot”.
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This year’s festival as a whole had a lot of throwbacks, especially that 2013 trap we all love since we don’t get trap like we used to anymore. JackU had an incredible performance at the Raging Kingdom with tracks like “White Iverson” “Where Are You Now?” and a dope remix of “Get Low”. Zed’s Dead had a perfect closing set and continued that throwback vibe by bringing back oldies like, “Better Off Alone”, “Aint No Mountain High Enough”, “Sweet dreams”, and a little Nirvana to tie it all together.
LIC Miami 2016 was a huge success. Thousands of happy faces went home with the ringing of their favorite tunes. Electronic dance music has become so popular in the last few years and there aren’t many one-day festivals around where fans can immerse themselves into a whole new experience than that of a typical music festival. So, in a nutshell, we have: Most rowdy fans award goes to JackU. Most ratchet crowd behavior goes to FLOSSTRADAMUS. Most repeated songs award goes to Travis Scott’s “Antidote”, and Jauz’s “Feel the Volume”. Most dope stage set up goes to Sphere Kingdom.