Jane’s Addiction frontman and Lollapalooza visionary Perry Farrell has some big plans for Las Vegas. Farrell teamed up with the film production company Immersive Artistry to build a multimillion dollar entertainment complex called Kind Heaven that sounds like Farrell’s own personal fake-deep Westworld.
Forbes summed the project up as “a one-of-a-kind immersive complex that will transport attendees into another world, taking them deep into a Southeast Asia-inspired fantasy that is a complete playground for the senses,” a statement that poses more questions than it answers. From Forbes:
“It’s a very hard thing to explain because we’ve become almost abused with words like immersive, experiential,” Immersive Artistry’s Cary Granat told me. “VR and AR companies define themselves as immersive and experiential and yet they’re really only visual. This is the greatest moment because we get to finally explain to everybody what we are and fulfill Perry’s vision.”
Farrell attempted to clarify that vision at a press conference earlier in this week in Las Vegas. According to Farrell, the whole $100 million project started with “a very vivid dream” where he descended upon an imaginary city from the sky and “watched a girl pickpocket someone who was passed out on the street.” He then assured prospective visitors to his immersive musical theater project that they themselves won’t get robbed, because they won’t have wallets—objects inside the simulation will be labeled with RFID tags, and “everything that you see, except for my wife, is for sale.”
It sounds like Farrell wants to use virtual reality to recreate not just a music scene but a whole city, with bars, “food stations,” and holograms in place of any organically occurring art, commerce, or criminal activity. “Even the alleyways might have some pickpocket who jumps over your head trying to escape the local police,” Farrell said.
“We’re trying to build something that is so powerful in the experience that you don’t need to say come here because Coldplay is playing,” he added, after saying that touring musicians will regularly appear at Kind Heaven. He also hinted he might haunt the complex in hologram form and floated the idea of letting visitors see the VR version of him have sex. From Forbes:
Who would be the dream hologram for you to sing with?
Farrell: Off the top of my head it would be amazing to sing with a David Bowie, Freddie Mercury, Jim Morrison, I could probably sing with anybody. Really, I would be very accommodating in the harmonizing, would be such a treat. But when I talked to you about the holograms I didn’t mean performance, I meant acting, like scenes. I don’t know if I’ll get to do this but it would be killer to have a holographic porn of myself. I haven’t pitched that one to them yet.
What would the holographic porno you be doing?
Farrell: Having delightful sex, revving up the audience, they can be at the bar looking up at a second-story window into my apartment and they would see, “Whoa, what’s going on over there?”
The more Farrell explains the concept for Kind Heaven, the less I understand what he’s actually trying to achieve. Is it live music augmented with virtual reality? Is R-rated Disney World? Is it Farrell’s personal interpretation of the Spike Jonez movie Her? Whatever it is, it sounds like it’s a bit much. Anyone who’s actually curious to see what a Perry Farrell-inspired “playground for the senses” looks like will have to wait until its planned August 2019 opening. Bring Advil.