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IMS conference 2022 | Day two | The future of clubbing

Virtual reality, the metaverse and utopic dancefloors.

From the release of Kanye West's Donda album on stem player, to Snoop Dogg and his heavy influence on Sandbox (virtual reality real estate), a new way of consuming music is upon us.

Whether you're a complete novice on Blockchain or a self-prescribed expert in the field, day two of International Music Summit (IMS) 2022 was dedicated to the metaverse and web3.

What we learned was very eye-opening. A world that most of us don't know exists, is out there - and it's thriving.

This is not something you should consider learning about, rather something both pressing and vital. Informed IMS speaker Jamie Burke called for open-mindedness and widespread participation.

According to Inder Phull, CEO of Pixelynx, "the metaverse is more than technology itself, it's a mindset." Thought-provoking. Our interpretation of this, is that whilst living in the present, you can explore the potential of the future - right here, right now and at your fingertips.

Clubbing in the metaverse

Head of Innovation at Coachella, Sam Schoonover, spoke of enhancing the live experience and carefully integrating technology in order to implement this.

This was put into practice at this year's festival, where Coachella ran an exclusive project, offering 10 people the chance to buy an NFT (non-fungible token) that grants them lifetime access to the festival. We saw similar rewards up for grabs at Amnesia during lockdown.

IMS 2022 Day 2 | by James Chapman

Techno luminary and entrepreneur Richie Hawtin is another loud voice speaking highly of this new, hybrid world.

Hawtin states that the last time artists were able to express themselves in a groundbreaking way, was the advent of the music video. He is one voice of many, pushing the idea that the metaverse is a space that can offer new creative control to artists.

Still a fairly new concept, there's time to learn and even invest into one of the many ways of using the metaverse (obviously once you've got to grips with the basics). Don't worry, it's not as daunting as it first seems.

IMS 2022 Day 1 | by James Chapman

IMS presenter and DJ Jaguar (a self-confessed metaverse novice herself) spoke of her equalising event Utopia. She is an advocate for making the industry a more inclusive and diversified space for both the consumer and professionals.

Is the metaverse the answer to democratising the industry? We'd like to think so.

IMS 2022 Day 2 | by James Chapman

The role of electronic music in web3

These ideas are futuristic and forward-thinking in nature, seeking to redress the imbalance inherited from the old system.

Though scratch beneath the surface, and it becomes clear that electronic music has been pushing many of them since its inception.

- Kraftwerk's machine-made synthesis and 3D stage show

- Underground Resistance's political commentary through a science-fiction narrative

- Drexciya's Afrofuturist mythology and electro comicboards

- Janelle Monae's Metropolis and ArchAndroid concept albums

- Damon Albarn's cartoon band project, Gorillaz (an early ancestor to the Bored Ape Yacht Club's NFT mascot?)

- London promoters, LWE, link-up with Sansar for the VR edition of Tobacco Dock

- Max Cooper's biochemist-led A/V shows using 360 degree wrapped mapping and fibre optic installations

These examples just scratch the surface of our scene's contribution. We're sure you can think of many others.

IMS Grand Finale 2022 | by Manel Gimeno

The present and tradition

All that said, what's very clear from the off-set, is that the desire to reunite and dance together in physical form is stronger than ever.

Despite what's said about the waning popularity of clubland, Ibiza has not got the memo. Consider this our bounceback reply. Less "out of office", more "back to our office!" And we couldn't think of a better office if we tried.

IMS Grand Finale 2022 | by Manel Gimeno

For the first time in history, multiple opening parties have sold out online - and let's not forget it's still only April. For Pacha's Grand Opening (29 April) and Better Together at Ushuaïa and Hï Ibiza (30 April), anybody without tickets is advised to head to the door before opening... or grab a sunrise pass for entry after 06:00 on Sunday 1 May.

Tickets for other parties remain on sale, although allocations run low. It would not be a surprise to see a few more pop up between now and then.

We can't wait to get amongst it at Grand Finale on Friday afternoon and raise the curtain to Ibiza 2022 in emphatic fashion. All the signs point to an incredible season ahead.

See you on the dancefloor.

Still after last minute club tickets for this weekend? Head to our party calendar and filter by dates and venue.

WORDS | by Lissy Lübeck and Stephen Hunt

IMAGES | by Manel Gimeno and James Chapman

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