alt-J systems engineer Tom Worley praises ‘advancements in L‑Acoustics 3D acoustical simulation software’

The rental arm of Rat Sound Systems supplied English indie rock band alt-J with an L‑Acoustics K series rig when they for the start their Relaxer tour last June.

The band was out on the road almost continuously, performing throughout Europe, North America and Asia through to February 2018.

Rat Sound’s association with alt‑J started in 2015 and it has been their worldwide audio supplier ever since. Front of house engineer Lance Reynolds, monitor engineer Brett Heet, and systems engineer Tom Worley helped the band produce a number of shows in vast spaces, such as the Olympiahalle Munich or Hallenstadion in Zurich and outdoor venues such as Red Rocks Amphitheater in Colorado.

The general system for the tour comprises main hangs of 12 K1 over six K2, with an additional six K1 and six K2 as side hangs to cover the full 180 degree audience. Cabinets can also be moved to and from the side hangs, which the Rat Sound team find useful for the varying venue configurations. Four Kara are flown as a centre fill, providing consistency and coverage directly in front of the stage for what Worley describes as the ‘big fans’.

Rat Sound used KS28 subs with alt-J for the first time on this tour. They have been mostly ground stacked, with nine stacks of two KS28 at 2.5 metre intervals positioned in front of the stage, but have also been flown on occasion.

“The KS28 rigging has improved efficiency and the LA12X amplified controller delivers the power required for a show like this,” explained Worley. “At Red Rocks, for example, we flew nine KS28 per side, which delivered smoother coverage in the vertical and an improved LF response from the system in the near and far field.”

“Making any system sound the same everywhere is actually a real challenge,” Worley added. “I think the advancements in L‑Acoustics 3D acoustical simulation programme Soundvision, as well as LA Network Manager, the remote control system for the LA12X amplified controllers, have really helped us to achieve the consistency we want. Having the ability to drop your touring system into a saved venue space in advance and make small changes on the day makes things a lot easier and faster for me. I also have our set and lighting design drawn as 3D room data, so I can import that and check sight lines, which keeps the promoters happy.”

alt‑J has further dates for the tour confirmed in the US, starting this spring, and have confirmed a date at Forest Hills Stadium in Queens, New York, on 15 June, which will feature an L‑ISA immersive audio system.