The Flaming Lips have come up with an ingenious solution to keep performing live in the midst of a global pandemic: bubbles.
As Consequence of Sound reports, on Friday the band performed the first of two “Space Bubble” shows at the Criterion in their hometown of Oklahoma City.
Members of the audience watched within 100 transparent spheres resembling giant hamster balls, with members of the band each within their own individual bubbles.
Meanwhile, giant balloons provided a backdrop onstage, spelling out the words “F**K YOU COVID-19.”
According to Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne, he came up with the idea for a bubble concert early in the pandemic. “I made a little cartoon. I drew myself. It was The Flaming Lips in 2019, and I’m the only one in a space bubble, and I’m on stage,” he told Consequence of Sound. “Then I drew The Flaming Lips in 2020. I’m in a space bubble, but so is everyone else. Of course, I would think of that, because isn’t this absurd?” he told Consequence of Sound.
With both band and audience encased within their own bubbles, Coyne joked that attending a Flaming Lips show is now “safer than going to the grocery store.”
After the show, Coyne took to Instagram to share photos and video of the event.
The Flaming Lips gave the “Space Bubble” concept a dry run last year to film their live video for “Brother Eye”. The band’s members were also positioned within individual bubbles during performances on “The Tonight Show” and “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert”.
Meanwhile, performing inside a bubble is something that Coyne had been doing onstage long before the start of the pandemic.
Here he is way back in 2008 at the O2 Wireless Festival at London’s Hyde Park, using his bubble to do a little crowd-surfing.