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Video Wonder: OK Go’s Zero Gravity Music Video

The band OK Go’s humble origins were on YouTube, a then-little-known website, where they exercised some of the most marvelous acrobatics on a group of treadmills. Since that first mesmerizing video appeared a decade ago, the quirky alt-rock outfit has continued to create extraordinary music videos, featuring everything from exploding household objects to a Rube Goldberg machine. Now the band has outdone itself with the first video to ever be shot entirely in zero gravity.

The video comes alongside the announcement made today that gravitational waves have been observed for the first time since Einstein first proffered the theory in 1915. It was shot at the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in Star City, Russia, a former secret Soviet Air Force facility.

One of the ways that zero gravity is simulated here on Earth is through parabolic plane flights. The aircraft hurtles towards the earth, and when it reaches a certain speed, its passengers are able to feel a sense of weightlessness. The video for “Upside Down & Inside Out” was shot in one take, over a series of eight parabolas. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the band was on heavy anti-nausea drugs the entire time, and there were about 58 instances of people vomiting over the course of filming.

Every day we track down a Video Wonder: an audiovisual offering that delights, inspires, and entertains. Have you encountered a video we should feature? Email ella@atlasobscura.com.