Loud ‘N Clear supplies Vaya Con Dios
LEBANON: Loud ‘N Clear provided the audio equipment for the recent Vaya Con Dios concert in Biel Beirut. The 4,000 person sold-out show was the first leg of the Belgian nine-piece band’s final tour.
‘They provided the best service possible,’ said long time FOH engineer Erik Loots. ‘Rodger Bou Farhat and his company totally understand the demands and the needs of a professional production like Vaya Con Dios. It was a pleasure to work with them.’
The FOH system consisted of 12 Martin Audio W8L Longbow per side augmented with eight WL8L-C per side as outfill. Subs consisted of 24 WSX218 in a row of 12, stacked in pairs, and electronically arced. Front fill came from two W8VDQs stacked on top of the subs in the centre. The whole system was driven from an XTA DP448 used as overall system controller. The entire system was aligned using SMAART 7.
‘I rely very much on a properly balanced system as the basis for a good mix,’ noted Mr Loots. ‘Vaya Con Dios is not a loud show but it contains a lot of dynamics. Martin Audio therefore is a great sounding system that allows to you to reproduce all the musical details without compromise. This was not an easy venue for this kind of music but the system performed flawlessly.’
A Midas Pro 9 was the FOH desk of choice for Mr Loots. ‘It’s an excellent sounding console with all the possibilities for a show like this. The Midas XL8 and Pro series desks are in my opinion the first digital desks that feel like and sound like an analogue desk with all the possibilities of the digital world.
‘Normally I would use outboard BSS DPR-901 on lead vocal, violin and bass,’ he continued. ‘But the onboard dynamic EQ in the desk does the job perfectly so I ended up not using any outboard equipment at all.’
The mic package consisted of a Neumann KMS105 for the Lead vocal, DPA 4099 for violin and toms, DPA 4011 for trumpet, hi-hat and guitar, Shure B58-A/UHF-R for backing vocals, Shure SM57 for snare, congas and guitar and a pair of AKG C414 for drum overheads.
To mic the grand piano Mr Loots selected a Helpinstill Model 280 Piano Pickup augmented with two AKG C414 used in omni. ‘The Helpinstill gives you a lot of detail and gain before feedback whilst the C414s give you an acoustic sound and “air” to it,’ said Mr Loots. ‘It’s an invaluable tool for amplifying an acoustic grand piano in a venue like this.’
In charge of monitors was Jelle Coremans, who joined Vaya Con Dios at the start of this tour. He mixed monitors on a Yamaha PM5D. Since all members of the nine-piece band are on in-ear monitors, he needed a desk with a minimum of 24 auxes. The IEM’s of choice were Shure PSM1000 and Loud ‘N Clear provided 10 sets. As a backup for the lead singer four Martin Audio LE1500s were used along the front of the stage.
‘Thanks to the excellent support of Rodger, his company Loud ‘N Clear and its crew, the people from Beirut enjoyed a great sounding show which is probably the last ever concert of Vaya Con Dios in this great city,’ concluded Mr Loots.