The Deep End

Part Ultra Fest, part Ozzfest, Global Gathering precedes this year's Winter Music Conference with a one-day, 12-hour mega-event that blurs the lines between dance and hard rock.

In what promises to be one of the most peculiar outdoor fests in recent memory, metalheads, ravers, and rivetheads will gather in (somewhat) close proximity at Miami's sprawling Bicentennial Park. While the B-Live Beach stage will serve up stalwart headliners Nine Inch Nails, as well as Rob Zombie, Alkaline Trio and a slew of emo/metal hybrids, and the New Times New Talent Stage will present six worthy South Florida bands (including headliners/contest champs Atomic Tangerine), the four remaining venues will focus heavily on DJ-led action.

Among the marquee names in the electronic lineup are Delta Heavies Sasha & Digweed, who will be joined by a supporting cast including Crystal Method, as well as Dutch trance stars Armin Van Buuren and Ferry Corsten on the Downtown Stage. The alternate Biscayne and Global Beats tents aren't looking too shabby either, with D.C. vets Deep Dish headlining the former and Adam Freeland the latter.

While Perry Farrell's involvement is apparently nil, Global Gathering comes sprinkled with Lollapalooza trimmings, including the vendor villages hawking tiaras and tattoos, performance artists, corporate-sponsored tents, and even a Ferris wheel. But while there are sideshows aplenty, the main attraction is the music. Time management will be a pertinent issue for anyone wishing to get the best of all worlds. But whether you're shaking your groove thang or shoving someone in the pit, a can't-miss performance by Nine Inch Nails is sure to gather the masses come sundown.

Global Gathering convenes noon to midnight on Saturday, March 18, at Bicentennial Park, Downtown Miami. Tickets are $55 in advance, $65 day of show. $200 advance VIP tickets are also available for the 21-and-up set at $200 a pop. Visit

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Kiran Aditham