London art-rock quartet Bloc Party recently performed at the Carling Academy in Brixton, along with 5,000 of the band’s “closest friends.” The band hosted the gathering as a prelude to a series of larger shows in Europe, including dates in France, Belgium, Spain, Germany, the Netherlands and other venues in the UK. Audio for the tour is being overseen by Paul Timmins, project manager at UK-based Capital Sound Hire.
Front-of-house engineer Pete Bartlett mixed the show at the venue, formerly known as the Brixton Academy, a mid-sized but acoustically challenging room, using a Meyer Sound system featuring MILO high-power curvilinear array loudspeakers and MICA compact high-power curvilinear array loudspeakers.
“I first encountered the MILO system at a couple of shows in Austin and Atlanta earlier this year and was quite impressed,” Bartlett says. “The system was deceptively powerful for its size, but the sound was smooth and articulate, very detailed.”
The Carling Academy Brixton is a relatively reflective room despite its smaller size. Bartlett went for a slightly smaller rig, using 12 flown MICA and four ground-stacked MILO cabinets per side. “Brixton is a notoriously tricky show,” Bartlett explains. “It’s hard to get any tight low end or any sort of even coverage in there, and people end up trying all sorts of interesting things. The hangs sounded fantastic: loads of lovely warm mids and lows, clear and clean right to the back door.”
For the upcoming larger dates, Capital Sound Hire is expanding the system to include 17 MILO boxes per side, along with four MSL-4 horn-loaded long-throw loudspeakers and four UPA-1P compact wide-coverage loudspeakers for frontfill.
“The Brixton show was great, nothing but compliments,” Bartlett concludes. “Great vocal sound, but even more noticeable was the weight on the snare and the clarity from the bass. The MICA and MILO couple together beautifully. I’m really looking forward to playing the larger venues, where the full rig can do its stuff.”
For more information on Capital Sound Hire, visit www.capital-sound.co.uk/capital_sound_hire/index.php. For more information on Meyer Sound, visit www.meyersound.com.