A new study dropped this week from the organization looking into drug and alcohol use at concerts – and EDM fans are at the top of the list for intoxication at events. Everyone who’s been to an EDM show knows how wild the crowds can get, and this study uncovers how EDM fans compare to other genres.

While EDM fans weren’t on top in terms of alcohol or marijuana consumption at shows, EDM fans were more than 5 times as likely to take MDMA at a show than any other genre. They were also more than twice as likely to use cocaine at a show than any other genre.

From the study:

“Roughly one in four people linked their EDM festival experiences to MDMA. Ecstasy, while considered a party drug, has been linked to heart disease, depression, and sleep disturbances. EDM shows were also popular places for cocaine use (nearly 9 percent) and hallucinogens (almost 10 percent).”

It’s also worth noting that EDM holds the top spot for the largest percentage of intoxicated people at shows. That puts EDM above heavy metal, alternative and hip-hop/rap shows, which have historically held a reputation for the wildest crowds.

Take a look at the chart summarizing the most intoxicated concert-goers below:


It’s worth noting that the data in the study is self-reported, so the actual numbers for drug and alcohol use at concerts may be higher. That, coupled with the fact that the sample size was only about 1,000 people, makes this study a bit small to be able to come to conclusive results.

However, intriguing findings like this could spark a broader interest in a more comprehensive industry study. There’s certainly a sharp contrast between EDM and the other genres studied.

Take a look at the full study at and let us know what you think.

Does this study sound accurate, in your experience? What has the crowd been like at different types of shows?

One of the findings of the study – "Top Reasons for Alcohol or Drug Use at Live Music Events"

One of the findings of the study – “Top Reasons for Alcohol or Drug Use at Live Music Events”