Soundcheck: R.E.M.

Aug 1, 2008 12:00 PM, Photos and Text by Steve Jennings

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R.E.M. have released their 15th album, Accelerate, and are in the midst of a world tour. Mix caught up with front-of-house mixer Brett Eliason and monitor engineer George Squiers during their two-night stint at the Berkeley, Calif., Greek Theater; gear is provided by Rat Sound.

Eliason describes the P.A. as comprising “two hangs of 14 [L-Acoustics] V-DOSC and six dV-DOSC [mains], two hangs of eight SB218 subs [main subs flown], two hangs of nine V-DOSC and three dV-DOSC [sides], 12 SB218s [ground subs, six per side], two hangs of 12 dV-DOSC 270 fill where applicable, a center hang of six dV-DOSC for front-fill and six ARCs [supplemental]. We had a little bit of a smaller system for the Greek.”

This is the first tour Eliason is using a Midas XL8 digital board; he's a longtime XL4 user. “The XL8 has the XL4 head amp quality, which makes a big difference to me,” Eliason says. “It is also a true 24-bit, 96k system, which you truly hear in its output resolution. We are running digital from the converters through the system processing, converting back to analog just prior to the amps.”

“I'm also a first-time user of the Midas XL8 console, and I love it,” adds monitor engineer Squiers. “It's nice having the Midas sound in a digital format. Mixing is great with the XL8 because of its automation from song to song, its amazing sound quality and its very analog-feeling surface.”






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