The Flaming Lips will play at the Jodrell Bank observatory in Cheshire this Summer – a novel venue for the cosmic-sounding US band.
The group from Oklahoma City, led by Wayne Coyne, will perform in the shadow of the University of Manchester’s Lovell telescope, the biggest and most powerful radio telescope in the UK, on Saturday July 2.
In fact, the dish of the Lovell telescope, which was the world’s largest steerable dish radio telescope when it was constructed in 1955, will double as a projection screen for the Doves gig.
Also on the bill to play at Jodrell Bank observatory are British Sea Power – a band well-known for staging gigs in unlikely venues – OK Go and Alice Gold.
The Jodrell Bank site has previously hosted a one-off performance from Doves, who performed their song Andalucia there last year.
In that gig, Doves enlisted the help of Jodrell Bank astrophysicist Dr Alastair Gunn to “use the moon as a massive delay pedal” in the recording of another track.
The Flaming Lips show will be a part of a day of activities, where fans will be invited to take part in space research workshops in the course of the day and will have access to the site’s new visitor centre.
This staging of gigs in improbable locations is becoming quite the trend. For example, Bryan Ferry and the Courteeners are among those performing shows at Forestry Commission venues this summer.