An interesting insider's look and listen -
straight from the afternoon
ritual of Soundcheck.
Although the sound reinforcement (PA) equipment
remains the same from night to night on a full production Tull
tour, the acoustic peculiarities of each venue change quite dramatically.
order to compensate for these differences, the PA is tuned before
soundcheck to get the system in to the ball park for the evenings
show, using both electronic analysis and known sound sources (the
sound engineer's favourite
CD). There then follows the bit with the band! The instruments are checked
one by one and the various sound sources blended together to form the rough
mix for the night's show.
Of course, when the audience come in, the sound
of most venues changes - sometimes quite significantly - and the
first song or two of the concert itself can be a steep learning
curve for the engineer in coping with the different ambience as
the human bodies soak up certain frequencies and reverberation
from the walls and ceiling.
Here you will find a typical soundcheck run-through
where various instruments come and go and some music is actually
played for reference. Sometimes, we use the soundcheck to rehearse
a "new" song
- perhaps for two or three days in a row - before adding it to
the set, either as a substitute or as a relatively fixed change
for the rest of the tour.
I trust that you will enjoy this visit behind
the scenes to the first part of
our usual six and a half hours at the venue! Some bands don't actually go to
soundcheck but have their roadies do it for them while they
sleep/eat/fornicate or do whatever rock bands do at five pm when they are indulging
in the R&R lifestyle instead of turning up for their own soundcheck like
real and caring men-on-a-mission.
Personally, I don't like nasty surprises and
prefer to get the feel of a
venue before the show.
I hope you have a good feel too.