The future of concerts? The Flaming Lips have held a socially distanced concert where the band and their fans were encased in individual plastic bubbles for the duration of the show.
Footage from the performance shows people inside 100 inflatable orbs; the event was said to be a test run for future concerts amid the coronavirus and formed part of their new music video. The group, from Oklahoma City, played two songs from their new album American Head at The Criterion, which has a capacity of 3,500, in their hometown on Monday night.
Frontman Wayne Coyne shared a clip from the show, writing: 'Yessss!!!' He also posted pictures to his Instagram page showing the bubbles before they were inflated. He told CNN: 'I don't think anybody would have thought in the middle of March that this is still going to be going, you know, eight months later… I think we all thought this is a month, this is maybe two months, but we're going to get a handle on this.'
Coyne, who has been using his own bubble to crowd surf since 2004, added: 'I like the way this looks, because you can get as excited as you want, you can scream as much as you want, you just can't infect the person next to you, no matter what you forget about, how excited you get… That barrier is still there, they're protected, and you're protected, that part of it is what we really felt like was the success.'
'I'm willing to do everything I can, you know, to say, I think we could do this, and this would be absolutely safe,' he added.
As for fans of the band, one, Dayzie Smith, told Vice: 'The bubble was so big that it wasn't really claustrophobic at all. It sounded a little distorted or kind of underwater, but not too much but enough to notice.'
In August, more than 2,500 music fans were spread out into hundreds of small fenced-off areas as they watched singer Sam Fender take to the stage, in what is thought to be the world's first socially-distanced concert.
The North Shields native performed a home-town gig at Newcastle's Gosforth Park, where a pop-up venue saw fans in groups of up to five watch the concert on 500 separate raised metal platforms.