Liverpool-based ADLIB supplied a V-DOSC sound system, DJ set and crew for the recent David Guetta UK Tour, helping to bring the world’s hottest music producer / DJ and his stunning live show to sold-out venues across the UK.
Guetta's FOH sound engineer is Hassane Es Siahi, who came onboard last August at the start of a festival tour which was also serviced by ADLIB. However, this is the first full DJ set production tour in terms of touring the equipment, as Guetta's action-packed performance schedule normally consists of large one-off gigs worldwide using local productions. The tour's production manager, Alan Green, ADLIB connections go back to the heyday of Liverpool superclub Cream, and so many roads converged when it came to choosing an audio company.
ADLIB's account manager Phil Kielty says, "David Guetta is by far one of the most innovative producers in the dance world and his live performances are always show-stopping. Hassane's creative talents are really shining through in producing a great sound, and of course it's good to be working with Alan Green & his team again".
The main sonic challenges of Guetta's live sound include capturing the massive energy levels coming offstage and getting a beautifully crafted molten mix all around the rooms in which they are working. Es Siahi's objective is to make the sound as punchy, solid and fluid as possible without it being overpoweringly bottom-ended. It's also vital to get the vocals - which feature prominently on many of Guetta's mixes –sitting perfectly in the mix.
So it's a hybrid-style mix fusing the genres of dance, electronica and rock in a process that he really enjoys.... with superlative results.
Es Siahi conferred with Guetta and they listened to several options before both selecting V-DOSC as the main system. Apart from the ‘French connection’, they liked the richness, delicacy and precision of its sound, even when driven hard and loud. “The V-DOSC has a real weight to it and you can get so much dynamics out of it," comments Es Siahi. "It's still one of the best systems around even though it maybe not be the newest."
The main left and right arrays were 12 V-DOSC elements a-side, with side hangs of 8 L-Acoustics Kudo, all powered by LA8 amps. dV-DOSC cabinets were used for infills and outfills at the front, with a pair as foot fills at the centre of the stage and the subs were 8 x SB28s per-side ground stacked.
Guetta's current and optimum monitor set up has evolved since Es Siahi started working with him. Having tried numerous combinations and configurations, this is the one he likes and that works best for his unique live style.
It consists of a dV-sub and 3 x dVs a-side, powered by LA8s. An output feed from Guetta's mixer goes straight into the amps enabling him to tweak the levels of the rig as desired.
ADLIB is supplying Guetta's DJ mixer of choice which is a Pioneer DJM 800, which he uses in conjunction with 4 x CDJ 2000s for all his source material, together with an effects unit. He also has a vocal mic going into his mixer, and a Pioneer DJM2000 mixer as backup.
Es Siahi receives a left and right feed from Guetta's mixer into his Soundcraft Vi1 console at FOH, which he specified because he wanted to try something new. "It's stable and sounds great," he comments. Es Siahi added a few magic atmospheric engineering touches of his own via the Vi1, and also used L-Acoustics' morphing tool for some strategic tweaking of the bass and low mids to enhance the spatial ambience of the PA.
They used an ADLIB standard Dolby Lake processing set up for EQ and time aligning the system, together with a SMAART analyser; a task perfected each day by systems engineer James Neale, with Michael Flaherty making up the third member of the ADLIB crew.
David Guetta’s production manager Alan Green stated, “This UK tour has been an outstanding success on many different levels. I’m really happy with the exceptional sound the ADLIB guys achieved at each show. Choosing ADLIB and the V-DOSC system was simple really, not only because Hassane is David Guetta’s FOH engineer anyway but because we know David loves the system and they are a great company to work with. Hassane, James and Michael were great to work with. All the way through the tour I received messages from both industry and regular fans on the dance floor who said it sounded incredible. Along with keeping the artist happy, that’s all I’m looking to achieve at the end of the day; smiling faces all round”.