Thought you might like to check out a live web broadcast we did last night. Everything Everything - my current favourite band as it happens - accompanied by a 17-piece orchestra. God I was happy to be asked to do this one.
Being hailed in some quarters as the gig of 2010. I suppose that depends on whether you like the band. I do. I expect Everything Everything are relatively unknown outside the UK, so if I was to describe them, I'd say they're an indie pop band with way-above-average songwriting talents, quite experimental (slightly Radiohead if thats not a cliche reference now). But still accessible and groovy much of the time, haunting melodies the rest of it.
The entire show is available to watch for a limited period online. And I think it's worth watching all the way thru (several times even) not because we did such an incredible job (I'm not here to big myself up) but because it's such a great gig. Quite emotional, some of the audience in tears at the end by all accounts. Everything Everything:*Live at Union Chapel
What can I tell you about the mechanics of it? Let's see...
1) One-day in and out. Load-in, setup, soundcheck, gig, load-out. Time was against everyone, with a lot to set up on stage, and two supports to soundcheck as well, so only two songs were fully played in soundcheck. Line check earlier on wasn't helpful to us either (mic tapping only), so a lot of instruments that I didn't hear during the day were a bit of a hail mary for us. Here I go, moaning already
Happy that I got the balance on most things about right except that bloody glockenspiel (if you watch it you'll hear what I mean). Reality is that there's always more you can do to fine-tune a mix if you have time... but we didn't. So, all things considered, I'm very happy with the results.
2) Lineup was: Strings (4 x violin, viola, 2 x cello), horns (2 x tpt, french horn, trombone, alto and baritone, flute, clarinet), percussion section inc vibes, marimba and other assorted bits, then drums, bass, 2 x guitar, upright piano, rhodes, vocals x 4. Probably left something out there.
3) We split 48 channels onstage to a pile of Audient ASP008s at monitors, added room mics and a couple of other bits, then converted to MADI, sent down fibre to a back room where I mixed on a DM2000. And multitracked to a pair of PCs running Nuendo.
4) Yes it seems the web people managed to swap L + R. Flip your headphones around.
5) Slightly frustrated that the sound guys took the bass mic away half way thru soundcheck, and we didn't manage to get them to put it back. The DI wasn't nearly as useable for the mix. Shame. Compress, dramatically low-pass, and live with it.
6) Strings individually miced with DPA4061s. There was of course a ton of spill into them, so that was somewhat the limiting factor mix-wise. But once I got my head around the fact that a tight punchy dry mix wasn't going to be an option, it was good.
7) I didn't get much time to look at the stage, but I think all the horns were on SM57s. Not particularly flattering but worked as long as you watched out for the raspy high-mid.
8) Thanks to Dan Goudie who was my right-hand man on the day, the LoveLive crowd who produced the broadcast and looked after the video shoot and web streaming, Graham and CentreStage who handled the on-stage production and the band's FOH Caroline who couldn't have been more friendly and helpful. Can't tell you how much I appreciated the input Caz.
9) Sorry, no pictures. Just didn't have time for photography.
Hope you find it enjoyable and/or interesting.
Buy their album!
PS for comparison, non-orchestral live version of "My Keyz Ur Boyfriend" which we recorded earlier this year can be seen here: YouTube - CTRL Exclusive: Everything Everything - My Keys Your Boyfriend LIVE