Life in Color: Diplo, Benny Benassi, R3hab at "World's Biggest Paint Party" in Miami

The countdown came to its exciting conclusion at 10:30, right when Afrojack's protégé R3hab took over control. Right away, he got down and dirty with the hard electro as sirens blared and long streams of pink, yellow, and green came spewing from giant hoses on stage. Anyone in the first twenty rows was soaked and tracks of the goopy made their way to all corners of the floor.

Photo by George Martinez

R3hab kept it hyphy for his hour before making way for Italian superstar Benny Benassi, who hit the stage with a well-timed balloon drop and a few hundred extra gallons of water-based paint. He kept the vibe going with house bangers like "Bullet," "Atom," and Swedish House Mafia selections. The kids got all excited for his hits "Satisfaction" and "Cinema," the latter of which he mixed, as per usual, with the popular Skrillex rework.

Meanwhile, the onstage insanity continued to ramp up. Astronauts did acrobatics from the ceiling, dudes in jump suits ran up risers flanking the booth, doing flips on trampolines. Giant robot-men in LED suits attacked the stage and mingled among the dancers.

Photo by George Martinez

But shit got really live when Diplo hit the decks. He jumped on top of the booth, demanding that everyone kick their shit up a notch. He hopped down and got low into the trap. And though he threw out a bunch of genres, the set stayed pretty damn hood from beginning to end: Rick Ross, R.L. Grimes, Waka Flacka, Flosstradamus, all the hits.

The sexiest hit of the night was his original bounce track "Express Yourself," for which he momentarily stopped the music to invite some ladies to clap their booties on stage. Miami's got some ratchet hos, don't you know?

Photo by George Martinez

As the clock closed on 2 a.m., the lasers faded and a deep voice boomed about the creation of earth, man, and house music, finishing with a dark bit about dancing with the devil, announcing the appearance of the famous Devil of Acapulco. The green-eyed laser monster ended the night with a few minutes of hardstyle beats and impressive production.

But just as suddenly as the Devil had showed up, the warehouse lights were flicked on, revealed the utter mess that LIC had made of the Miami Beach Convention Center. It was a paint massacre, thousands of kids drenched in watery rainbow filth. They made their way out the exit and into the streets, probably horrifying loads of strangers by their sheer numbers and insane appearance.

Rest in peace to all the leather seats that got wrecked on the ride home.

Photo by George Martinez

Critic's Notebook

Personal Bias: There's nothing quite like going in to a party lookin' like a pristine canvas and coming out a Technicolor blob.

The Crowd: Partiers aged 17 to 20-something who aren't afraid to slip and slide for the bass. Some famous Miami athletes were there. Oh, and Timbaland.

Worst Thing to Hear When Tripping: "Demons, look around you, they're everywhere."

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Location Info


Miami Beach Convention Center

1901 Convention Center Dr, Miami Beach, FL

Category: General

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