Boiler Room, the purveyor of international internet club nights, will be launching a “virtual reality venue,” Dazed and Pitchfork report. The space, produced alongside the VR company Inception, will be a physical club in London, rigged with cameras, and fans will be able to watch concerts in real time via VR headsets.
Without seeing it, it’s hard to tell whether Boiler Room’s focus on dance music make it an especially good candidate for VR or an especially bad one. On one hand, clubbing doesn’t depend on physical proximity to the DJ to be enjoyable, the way a rock concert might benefit from a good view of the stage. On the other, the best nights on the dancefloor usually involve a lot of warm bodies around you, you know, dancing together.
Traditionally, Boiler Room sets are streamed via an ordinary webcam placed near a DJ’s decks, and audiences the internet over are treated to a view of fashionably bored clubgoers mobbing behind whomever’s playing. The DJs are great, and they often play weirder stuff than they would at a big club night, but the visuals don’t have much appeal for me, and I’ll usually keep the stream going on a hidden browser tab while I’m doing something else. If you’re someone who likes to watch, though, the VR venue promises a more immersive version of that experience. Watch a recent set from DJ Earl of the Teklife footwork crew below.