Over 300,000 people from across the world on New Year’s Eve came to Las Vegas to bring in
2012, and of those people witnessing another legendary Las Vegas New Year’s Eve, a select
fraction got to witness something even more legendary: a twelve-hour Kaskade set!
That’s right–twelve hours.
Getting to the show was an adventure in itself. The Strip was wall-to-wall.
There were many times where I couldn’t move, and the pressure from thousands of
people propelled me along like a jetstream. The Cosmopolitan Hotel and Casino, which is where Marquee is located, was gated
off like a medieval fortress for security reasons. After coercing a guard to let me in, we
headed up to a suspiciously quiet front-door at Marquee. If only I knew what was in store for me at the top of that elevator.
As the elevator ascended, the thumping
bass in the background came through like the opening of a cutoff filter. The doors separated,
and the first thing I saw was a large neon Kaskade sign above one of the bars, as if it
were a caption introducing me to a new scene of my life.
Marquee was at the largest capacity I have ever seen it. The ropes that usually close off
half of the back patio area were opened. Every table and cabana was booked. Celebrities
ranging from Topher Grace to 50 Cent were in attendance. Kaskade, along with opening act Digital LAB, led the countdown to 2012 with images of large digital meters above and below them as if they were setting off the
world’s largest bomb. When the ball finally dropped, as people were unleashing absolute
pandemonium, he started the New Year right with Turn It Down, launching a diverse set that captured imaginations.
The recently voted US DJ of the year demonstrated why that is the case, unleashing an
arsenal of remixes and mashups of his own design, as well as hit songs from other EDM
artists. He played 168 songs total, and every song was like opening up a new holiday gift.
You’d get classics like Stars Align or Angel On My Shoulder, then a newer hit like the Swanky Tunes’ remix of Eyes
or Only You. Bangers like mashup Fire in Your New Antidote and Skrillex collab Lick It tested the limits of Marquee’s 32,000
watt sound system. During Levels by Avicii, snow-like confetti floated over
the enchanted crowd, creating a shared experience that I’m sure was the highlight of most
people’s nights–a night that crossed over into noon the next day. It was for me.