Festival or Rave?

One of the most common misconceptions is thinking raves and festivals are the same. Even though they may share similarities, they ARE different.

By definition a music festival is “an organized event, typically lasting several days, featuring performances by various musicians, singers, and groups.” A rave has a similar definition but is based mainly around electronic dance music.

 The two can seem extremely similar to a first timer, but there are some key differences that set them apart. For example Coachella offers EDM but is considered a music festival. Then you have EDC that is a rave that offers mainly electronic music but a huge variety of it.Some distinct differences are music, fashion, and activities.

Raves are usually stacked with a fire line-up, headliner after headliner. With all these mainstream artist comes A LOT of people and a wide range of vibes. Each of these artists may all be playing “EDM” music but each subgenre has its own unique sound.

 Music Festivals offer more than just DJs. You can see a variation of R&B, Folk, and Jazz. They also offer performances done by dances or experiences such as the Lucent Dossier Experience, which is cirque style interactive.


Fashion is the next major difference between both festivals & raves. You’ll definitely want to still plan your outfits ahead of time. Regardless of what one you attend, you’re sure to see some unique and amazing fashion.

Raves there are no boundaries when it comes to what to wear, its pretty much all about self-expression and being comfortable! Within the style you will see holographics and LOTS of neon. Pasties and high-waist booties shorts are one of the most infamous outfits in the scene but if that isn’t what you’re comfortable in that completely ok! Raves are one of the only places that literally ANYTHING is ok to wear!

Now with fashion at a music festival it varies with the theme. Say you were to attend Coachella, you’ll definitely see a lot of boho styled clothing or dressed up street wear. At something like Lightning in a Bottle or Shambhala you’ll see a mixture of everything ~ from mainly hippie fashion to self-made extravagant themed gowns.    

 When it comes to activities music festivals definitely have way more to offer. Since they typically last all day & night they are able to have loads of activities. Most offer interactive art structures, live painting, and yoga. Lightning in a bottle is notorious for their workshops and late night bingo. Some music festivals are also located by either rivers or lakes so that makes for great daytime fun!

Raves typically occur in at peak of night, which allows you to be fully amerced in the vibrant colored art cars and stages. EDC offers more than most raves as far as activities go. They have a parade down Electric Avenue, candy making station, and interactive performers that will take photos & dance with you.

There is so much to love about both events, each magical and unique in their own way! Hopefully you are now able to distinguish what type of event you are attending with this new information! Happy Festing <3