Meyer Sound Interview with SIM Engineer/Miles Davis Hall Pablo Espinosa At the 35th Montreux Jazz Festival
Interviewed by Lorin Horosz, Meyer Sound.
LH: Tell me about the role that Meyer Sound's SIM played in this year's Festival?
PE: The SIM system is a great measuring tool that allows us to properly align and equalize the system for optimal performance and make it sound very even and consistent across the Hall. Capable of measuring the response, regardless of the source [Source Independent Measurement], you can do very fine adjustments during the performance to compensate for changes in the room due to temperature, humidity and the presence of the audience itself. This gives the sound a great deal of consistency. Several guest mixing engineers noticed how consistent the system was, from an empty room during sound check to a full room during a performance.
LH: How have the Meyer Sound M3D line array systems changed the sound reinforcement dynamics in Miles Davis Hall?
PE: We used the new M3D-Subs in Miles Davis Hall this year. The system was four MSL-4s, four UPA-2Ps and three M3D-Subs (per side) with five UPM-1Ps as front fills. Due to the nature of the performances at Miles, there is a lot of low end for Reggae, Hip-Hop, Trance and Electronica. We wanted to integrate the M3D-Subs this year into the Hall to try them with other systems. The result was fantastic! We had many compliments on the low end. The directional characteristics of the M3D subs also reduced unwanted reflections. This is important in the case of Miles Davis Hall where the stage is in a corner. With other subs there is too much buildup of unwanted low end on the stage but not with the M3D-Subs.
LH: Since you are the Crew Chief at both Miles Davis Hall and the Jazz Café, tell me about some of the performance highlights in those venues.
PE: The Jazz Café works more like a club with DJs and bands from the European club circuit. The audience is always very enthusiastic and always dancing. Miles is more a concert hall where people go to see artists and bands performing. This year we had lots of well-known international artists from a wide variety of music styles and backgrounds. The list was huge! I can tell you that every single night the Hall was packed and the audience enjoyed every show. A few of the best shows were David Gray, Alanis Morissette, Patti Smith, PJ Harvey, Cinematic Orchestra, Basement Jaxx and Burning Spears, just to name a few.
LH: What comments have you received regarding the Festival this year and/or the audio performance at Miles Davis Hall and the Jazz Café?
PE: In Miles Davis Hall we received an average of three guest engineers every night, most of them very experienced engineers. The comments in general were that the system had very even coverage and very transparent sound. This allowed them to concentrate on their mix rather than on the system. Each engineer had his or her own particular way of how they wanted the system to sound. It was very easy to satisfy them all. Only a few times did I find myself tweaking the EQ to satisfy their personal requirements of the system.