The Bravery Tour Profile

Jan 1, 2010 12:00 PM, By David John Farinella
Photos: Steve Jennings

RISING GROUP KEEPS GEAR, MIXES LIGHT

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Sam Endicott, lead vocals/guitar/programming

Sam Endicott, lead vocals/guitar/programming

Front-of-house engineer/tour manager Keith Danforth explains The Bravery's touring strategy simply: Keep things light. After all, this is a band that's bounced between small and large clubs, amphitheaters and even a stadium or two since its self-titled first album was released in 2005. “On each tour, they will have a cornucopia of different events,” he says. “So carrying a truck full of gear around that we only need half the time doesn't make much sense. Plus, when you're globe-hopping, you quickly learn the less you bring the better.”

Danforth and monitor engineer Scott Eisenberg have been with the quintet since the early days. Whereas Danforth got the gig based on his experience at the Viper Room in Los Angeles, Eisenberg first met the band before their eponymous debut was released when they came through a club he was working at in Boston. Despite this experience, Danforth and Eisenberg were adjusting to a collection of songs from the band that hadn't yet been released. Those songs featured new backing tracks to work with, as well as the addition of a bow to Michael Zakarin's guitar repertoire and a couple of drums for him to play. “It's been fun to play with that stuff,” Danforth says. “We've been doing this for four years together. Those types of textures and additional instrumentation and a host of other things they have added on this run have brought a lot more to the overall sound and what they are going for.”

Sparse FOH, Racks 'N' Stacks

In keeping with their “travel light” mantra, the crew arrived at The Warfield in San Francisco in early November with a monitor desk, personal monitors and Danforth's FOH rack that goes with him everywhere to ensure continuity in singer Sam Endicott's tracks. The rack is stocked with an Eventide H3000, TC Electronics 2290, and a couple of M1s and D2s.

Front-of-house engineer/tour manager Keith Danforth at the Warfield's Midas H3000

Front-of-house engineer/tour manager Keith Danforth at the Warfield's Midas H3000

“The H3000 and 2290 are pretty high-end, but the M1s and D2s are there because they only cost a couple hundred bucks, so if they destroy themselves it's easy to grab another one and I'm not in the middle of nowhere looking for vintage gear on a Wednesday,” Danforth explains. “I try to keep most of what I'm doing as simple as possible so that it doesn't become a big complicated mess moving from venue to venue and situation to situation every day.”

The console at The Warfield is a Midas H3000 and the P.A. includes 22 boxes of Meyer MILO gear, 11 HP-700 subs, a pair of MSL-4s and four CQ-1s for front-fills and six M1Ds for under-balcony fills. Most of the time Danforth is fine with what's at the venue. “I care that it's a name brand and there's a bunch of it,” he says of the P.A. “In general, I would like to see something that has a little more power and a few extra boxes so that I don't have to turn it up so loud.

“I listen from the FOH position — mixing for the bulk of the room — and then walk around to see what changes may need to be made to fill things out, to create an even feel in the venue,” he continues. “I'm not going to grab a tablet and sit in every seat in the balcony. But I will walk the room during soundcheck and make sure there is continuity. That's all you can do unless it's your P.A. anyway.”






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