Music and technology are slowly but steady becoming a complement of each other. Technology, with its exponential growth across different verticals has aided music to push creative boundaries, generating valuable differentiators that result in unique experiences for fans. As music and technology are at the core of Stereotheque’s ethos, we continually attend concerts, from established, mainstream artists, as well as up-and-coming musicians or YouTube stars. We definitely believe all and any of these artists create and help evolve music scenes, creating the music that we love and listen to every day. In that sense, we think the way in which we experience live, interactive, technology-driven shows will influence our listening habits, and help drive our engagement behavior in music streaming applications.

Think of Bands in Town, or Live Nation and Ticketmaster, even SeatGeek and StubHub. All of these companies are gathering hyperlocal data, matched with venue insights, providing a customized experience for the concert-goer. There will be a moment in time, when VR and AR becomes common in the live entertainment realm, that companies will be able to deliver even a more immersive and personalized experience based on your own specific live-show preferences.

It becomes not only a matter of creativity but of effective execution.

In the live concert industry there is a threshold for making a big splash. This barrier of entry was quite large for some time simply because technology was expensive. Now in the sharing economy, open source and free technologies are widely available for those artists who want to enhance their own shows without having a large budget or development experience. However, this last aspect is a new barrier because quality is subject to those skills. It becomes not only a matter of creativity but of effective execution. Here in Stereotheque, we’ve worked with several artists in the past and have been challenged with their ideas which in a way have helped us get more involved in this area. Here are 10 of our favorite technologically-driven shows that take interactivity and music to their maximum expression.

1. Nine Inch Nails

The now Apple Music executive Trent Reznor has been an innovator when it comes to interactive shows. Nine Inch Nails’ last world tour included several summer festivals and cities in Europe, Asia and The Americas. Reznor’s creative confidants come from a Montreal-based studio called Moment Factory. By using open source software and custom made LED screens and gadgets, they have pushed NIN’s live experience to the max, becoming one of the most attractive shows ever.

2. Atoms for Peace

Thom Yorke (Radiohead) and Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers) can be one of the weirdest yet most appealing duos ever. Coming from such different musical spheres and along with other virtuosos, they teamed up for Atoms for Peace a band that falls into the progressive rock category. Collectively, they sum up a ton of road experience and deliver an exciting show. Definitely worth to watch live rather than just dull yourself via YouTube with headphones.

3. Radio Soulwax

Two brothers, two bands, one bus. The 2012 DVD shows the extreme lifestyle the two musician brothers, Stephen and David Dewaele depict after performing night after night with an average of two shows per night as 2ManyDJs and Radio Soulwax. At the interactive level, they use small and portable light kits connected to Ableton Live sessions via DMX-512 to MIDI protocol in order to automatize the light show. A very DIY way to deliver a high impact show and in their own words: “Part of the weekend never dies.”

4. U2

The Irish veterans have always been known to do stadium and arena shows. Not everyone has to feel attracted to their music but there is a very well thought out process behind their tours. Their spider stage offered the 360 views to their audiences, innovating (at that point in time) with high definition LED screens and exquisite sound.

5. Mutemath

New Orleans offers all types of music. Mutemath is definitely high on creativity judging simply by their videos, behind the scenes, crazy drummer, hyperactive singer and tours. During the Odd Soul tour, together with Rabbit Hole Creative they built their stage so that custom made projection-mapping could create a 3D effect onto the stage’s background, showing an almost immersive experience for their audiences.

Do you have any other interactive and innovative shows to share?

Tomas Uribe

Tomas Uribe is the Co-founder and CEO of Stereotheque. Composer, bass player and front-end designer and engineer. Also a die-hard fan of Nine Inch Nails.

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