Flaming Lips’ ‘Space Bubble’ Concerts Went So Well That They’re Doing More Of Them

Music fans can’t wait for the pandemic to quiet down enough for concerts to come back, but in some cases, that has already happened. Things are looking pretty normal in New Zealand, where Earthgang performed earlier this year. Flaming Lips also put on some “Space Bubble Concerts” where both the band and audience were encased in their own giant plastic bubbles, like the ones Wayne Coyne has used on stage for years. Those were apparently a success, as the band has announced that more bubble shows are on the way, on March 12 and 13 in Oklahoma City.

In a December interview, Coyne spoke about the then-upcoming shows with Consequence Of Sound, saying that he believes the bubble concerts are safer than some everyday activities: “I would say that they’re safer than going to the grocery store. We have people that will make you put on your mask and make you leave if you don’t comply. That doesn’t happen at the grocery store. A guy could be standing next to you and not think the coronavirus is real. I don’t want to get in a fight at the grocery store. So that part of it, I believe that we’re in control, and we would be the ones who say you have to put on a mask. It wouldn’t be up to another concertgoer. It would be up to the ones running the show. I wish more places were like that. I wish more places took control.”

However, not all medical professionals are convinced that this type of concert is safe, or that it isn’t. Dr. Sandro Galea, dean of the Boston University School Of Public Health, recently told The New York Times, “There is no evidence about the efficacy — or lack thereof — of these bubbles from an infectious disease transmission point of view. So, in theory, if air filtration is good, protective barriers can helpfully augment and reduce risk of transmission, but I would be hesitant to attend a concert in a bubble at the moment unless this has been assessed further.”

Flaming Lips is a Warner Music artist. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.