In today’s world, phones are as ubiquitous as ever. They have become a veritable extension of our body, and are always within arm’s reach. While they do offer temporary level of comfort and amusement, these devices take away from reality and experiences in the present. Club settings exemplify this type of behavior, as it has become common for a sea of phones to dominate the dance floor. People often watch the show through their screen, effectively taking away from the experience in the moment.
Enter Daniel Goldstein, who grew tired of playing to a phone-obsessed crowd. Slated to play at Mezzanine in his hometown of San Francisco, the DJ known as Lane 8 conceptualized a new show with one goal in mind — eradicating all phone use. He fittingly called it “This Never Happened,” and explained on his Facebook page, “we invite you into a space where the only thing that matters are the people in that room, the music and the magic that happens when those things interact. An event where the dancefloor will be a phone and photo-free space.”
Entering the venue, a slim piece of tape was placed on everyone’s phone, covering both the front and back camera lenses. An unusual buzz engulfed the club, as people seemingly arrived wide-eyed, excited to experience this one-of-a-kind night. Awaiting Lane 8, loud banter filled the room and not a phone could be seen spanning the dark dance floor. It was apparent that those in attendance were committed to respecting this abnormal request, not only for Daniel but also for themselves. As Lane 8 hopped on the decks, everyone’s focus darted to the stage. Fans shrilled in anticipation and music finally began to fill the room. Throughout the set, phones were non-existent, not even a balloon drop mid-set could entice the crowd to whip out their devices. There was a genuine and engaging energy reverberating throughout the club, and Lane 8 fed off of it. He expressed his gratitude over the mic, as adulation reflected through his body language. With the night coming to a close, the same intensity the night had started with remained, and still no phone could be seen. Lane 8 proved that a show sans phone is possible and opened the doors to what possibly could be the next best trend in electronic music.