Red Bull gets a second revolution

Celebrating the UK’s prolific dance music scene the second ever Red Bull Revolutions in Sound featured 30 club nights crammed into 30 capsules of one of the UK’s most recognised landmarks – The EDF Energy London Eye.

Each of the capsules was dedicated to a specific club night and the event played host to more than 100 artists including Lily Allen, Erol Alkan, Jamie XX, Giles Peterson, and Mark Ronson, while they slowly rotated 135m up into the London skyline.

Rental and Sound Design provider Delta Sound was once again appointed by brand experience agency Innovision to provide the sound solution for the event.

Given just seconds to load each of the pods, Delta Sound’s 38 audio engineers led on site by project manager Davey Williamson managed to complete the task in just two full revolutions of the giant Ferris wheel.

With each pod measuring only 8m long and 4m wide Williamson and his crew were tasked with designing a system that would be compact enough to allow room for the 22 guests inside while accurately recreating the desired nightclub vibe. Delta Sound opted to install each pod with d&b audiotechnik Q7 two-way passive loudspeakers along with a variety of DJ kit from Pioneer and Technics.

“This is the second time that we have facilitated a Red Bull show at the London Eye so we were thrilled to be reappointed by Innovision,” commented Williamson who also explained how the 2013 edition varied from the original Revolutions in Sound: “As opposed to supplying audio specs for 31 artists, we were implementing systems for 31 club nights – some of which had up to five DJs or artists.

“Consequently, the requirements for each capsule were more specific. For example, in the Rinse FM pod, Katy B was singing live backed by a cajón and keyboard rig which were mixed via a Yamaha LS9, while Skream and Artwork required four CDJ 2000s and DJM 900 mixers.”

On the ground, more than 2,000 partygoers took part in a ‘silent disco’ at the pathway leading up to the Eye, which had been transformed into an open-air nightclub with further kit supplied by Delta Sound.

Yet the live performance was only a small part of Revolutions in Sound as the event was simultaneously broadcast live and streamed online. The audio along with multi-camera feeds from each of the moving capsules was produced and broadcast in real time on in the UK and YouTube for the rest of the world with an estimated one million people tuning in to the event.

Broadcast experts SIS Live supplied one of its bespoke RouteCase portable HD live production studios in each capsule, which feature a 10-channel audio mixer and four-input vision mixer. With each of the capsules constantly moving a comprehensive RF network had to be employed.

“This was the most RF-intensive programme we, or probably anyone, has attempted at a single venue,” commented SIS Live’s lead RF communications supervisor Pat Blackburn.

“With the current squeeze on suitable RF frequencies available to broadcasters it has been a challenge to fit everything in, however JFMG and Ofcom have been extremely helpful throughout and have managed to temporarily release some additional bandwidth for us.”