Is technology helping? Are we losing ourselves? Who holds the power?These aren’t just hallmarks of good sci-fi, they’re big questions that people find themselves asking more and more. Online communities have yielded mixed results, and yet, humans are endlessly intrigued with the possibilities of exploring fantastical worlds, especially when the promise is built on a mix of wonder and connection.

But when does escapism go wrong? And how do we stay grounded in the midst of these worlds? That’s the debate of Bastille’s new VR-focused concept album, Give Me The Future. Memories, avatars, and shady corporations are all in play, providing a ripe playground for heady concepts, coated in a pop sheen. And to some bands, this would be enough. A number-one album is nothing to sneeze at, but Bastille wanted to push things even further, using the world they’d developed to make a connection between themselves and tour-hungry fans, collectively waiting out the pandemic.

“As a band, we try to shy away from what’s expected,” says Dan Smith, the band’s founder and lead singer. “Our new album Give Me The Future is about our relationship with technology, and we really wanted to do something that pushed the boundaries of what’s currently possible and that looked towards what’s to come in the future. This is the next level of interactivity within music.”

The result is The Give Me The Future Experience, a “hybrid metaverse / physical gig” that plays with the same VR-as-portal feeling that ripples throughout the album. Created by content creation company Hogarth and global agency VMLY&R—both part of media giant WPP—the experience takes fans from a futuristic apartment into a vibrant city, which serves as a Blade Runner-esque backdrop for the band’s performance. You fly through buildings, float past holograms, and eventually find yourself in a desert surrounded by dancing, fan-driven avatars, who are also enjoying the set before a final hot-air balloon ride. All in a matter of minutes.

Source: Unreal Engine Blog

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