Prodigy’s front-of-house engineer Jon Burton has also mixed for Beth Gibbons (Portishead) and Bjork at Live8 in Japan. Burton has also done monitors for Stereophonics, Lulu and Blue. “I prefer FOH for the obvious reason that you can hear what you do, but enjoy the discipline of monitors,” Burton says.
How much gear are you carrying?
We are carrying a cut-down backline as it is part of a larger world tour. I am carrying a small effects rack but rely mainly on my laptop. We are carrying all the mics and radio systems. We have rented some lights and extra sidefills and the keyboard fill from Eighth Day Sound. Prodigy are quite loud onstage, and house monitor systems come nowhere near our spec, so we are carrying a load of d&b speakers and amps.
Any mixing techniques for this band?
The main problem with mixing Prodigy is getting the P.A. to contribute and not battle with the stage sound. I time-align the P.A. to Liam [Howlett]’s rearfill. This points straight at me and there is no way I can ignore it, so I just use it as my point source and delay everything to this. Otherwise, it is pretty straightforward.
What is your favorite venue in which to work?
With Prodigy, the bigger the gig the better. They are one of the few bands that sound better in an arena than a club. If you have an enormous P.A., they are a great band to mix in a big gig! Any other act, though, I would prefer to be in a nice theater with carpets and soft furnishing!
When you’re not on the road, where can we find you?
I help out at my wife’s chocolate shop in Sheffield, England. The moment I am back, I am dispatched to behind the counter, dispensing chocolate and confectionary five days a week. It makes a change and keeps me busy!