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Old 29th September 2016
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robballan's Avatar
Hi Jetsam
lots of good questions. I might answer a couple tonight and get back to the rest tomorrow if thats ok.Its nearly midnight here and I've had a good dinner with my friend Nick Warren who has mixed some cool bands over the years. We might have had a glass of wine too. So...

could you explain a bit more about the timecode setup you're using with Massive Attack?
Does the drummer get a click track, are there any backing tracks running of the timecode?

There are two drummers they both receive click tracks. Also the bass,guitar,keyboard,Dj and all the vocalists. There are eleven performers on the tour plus an 18 piece string section on some shows. All working to click.

Who starts the timecode for each song?

There is a playback engineer for the tour Euan. He also is the bands studio engineer. He starts each song when everyone is ready. There are various clicks and counts for all the musician, prompts, even the odd piano chord for pitching that the audience don't hear. I receive 4 x stereo stems that have strings, samples or little loops depending on the song. Nearly everything is live. The second drummers triggers loops and percussion sounds from pads. If there some sounds that need to be added on top they're added via playback. They tend to be minor details like pads or a drone.

Do you also use the timecode with other acts? If so how often?

Its something I've done very occasionally but really got to grips with with MA. The lights, video and lasers all run from the code as well. As I receive the code as an audio track I can record it to PT and use it as part of my virtual soundcheck. I also feed the code to the visual department as direct out from my desk. This means my virtual soundcheck can become a virtual production rehearsal with all of us programming to synch up important moments in the show. 3D the main guy can sit with us and direct the virtual show exactly as it will happen when the audience are there. This means we can truly collaborate the entire 360 degree experience.