Thanks to the impact of COVID-19, the live music industry has mutated into a Frankenstein-like monster of drive-in shows, Black Mirror-esque bubble concerts, and quasi-legal raves. Since live music literally has nowhere to go, it has invaded the livestreaming and immersive tech fields, which have emerged as fortuitous bolt-holes as concert venues across the globe navigate the convoluted process of reopening.
Ergo, artists and event promoters have been forced to adapt to a digital lifestyle in order to reach fans during a time when they are simply unable to connect via live music. Barnstorming, Latin Grammy Award-nominated dance music trio Major Lazer is the latest act to do so by testing the white-hot waters of the VR world. Teaming up with leading VR brand Oculus, the group is performing live in the Facebook-owned company's "Venues" social VR environment tomorrow, November 18th.
Harnessing the power of Supersphere’s ArcRunner, Major Lazer have essentially developed a virtual blueprint of their Major Lazer World Tour—which was shelved due to the impact of the virus—and repurposed it in Oculus' "Venues" world. ArcRunner enables artists to recreate full global tour production, including stage layout, visuals, lighting, set design, and practically every other element of a physical, large-scale arena show.
To watch Major Lazer's one-of-a-kind performance, you'll need to get your hands on an Oculus VR headset. You can check out their products, which also include touch controllers and head straps, here.
Major Lazer will take the virtual stage tomorrow at 6PM PT (9PM ET). To subscribe and check out the event in the Oculus App, head over to its official microsite. Oculus is also hosting a slew of shows in "Venues" in the near future, including a DJ set from SOFI TUKKER. You can view the full schedule here.