TRAVIS' TRIUMPHANT RETURN - WITH W8LC
After a period off the road and away from the charts, Scottish band Travis recently completed a rousing UK tour to promote their fifth studio album, The Boy with No Name, which has been flying high in the UK charts.
Consolidating their resurgence, the band closed their UK leg with a performance at the Carling Hammersmith Apollo which showed them back at their best.
The man charged with delivering the band's live sound this past decade has been the experienced Giles Woodhead - sending the mix to his favourite line array system, the Martin Audio W8LC - supplied by London-based Capital Sound Hire.
'I used it extensively with the Finn Brothers and we achieved some stunning results,' he says. 'Reports from the house technicians on that tour was that this was the best system they had heard, and that's no lie. It seems fitting that a British company can outperform its American counterparts in some of the worst sounding rooms in Europe - the acoustically difficult British rectangular city halls, with balconies on three sides, and the Victorian theatres; neither is ideal.' And nothing like the quality of venues experienced in mainland Europe, he says.
Giles believes that since the W8LC is all horn-loaded, with a short array it tends to be much more musical when compared with the equivalent number of cabinets from another system. 'That's what horn-loading does,' says the engineer. 'With the LC's you get more directional control [than other systems] from the same length of array. This is very important when you are trying to hang your array from a Victorian plaster ceiling rose!'
At Hammersmith, the PA was optimised using Martin Audio's ViewPoint™ array software by system tech Martin 'Magic' Ellis-Cope (who is joined on this tour by monitor engineer Amanda Thomson and monitor rigger Liam Tucker). Here they were running 12 x W8LC's per side with two WLX subs at the top to fill out the low end. Four further W8LM Minis provided frontfills and four S218 subs per side were groundstacked.
Both Giles and Magic agree that the system is built for speed and economy -fast to rig/derig and remarkably truck-friendly when it comes to packing.
By the end of June Travis will have seen service in the forests of England to all points in Europe. The US and Japan are also on their immediate schedule before they return to the UK for the festival season.
Further information from:
Maureen Hayes, Martin Audio Jerry Gilbert, JGP Public Relations
Tel: +44 (0)1494 535312 Tel: +44 (0)1707 258525
Fax: +44 (0)1494 438669 Fax: +44 (0)1707 267140
Pics: FOH engineer Giles Woodhead