Ash Drummer Keeps Time, Eye On Mixes

After 20-plus years of hard-charging power pop, smash albums overseas and antics like releasing 26 singles in one year (one for each letter of the alphabet), Ash is on the road behind its latest album, Kablammo, and has spent the summer touring and playing festivals.
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New York, NY (August 10, 2015)—After 20-plus years of hard-charging power pop, smash albums overseas and antics like releasing 26 singles in one year (one for each letter of the alphabet), Ash is on the road behind its latest album, Kablammo, and has spent the summer touring and playing festivals.

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Like many heritage acts these days, the trio travels light and keeps things compact; with that in mind, drummer Rick McMurray serves double-duty, not only keeping time but keeping an eye on the band’s mixes as well, serving as monitor engineer, keeping an Allen & Heath Qu-Pac digital mixer next to his drums to handle monitors.

“Before this tour we were using an analogue mixer running a multitrack recorder for playback, all of which required a monster rack. Qu is basically doing the job of three different bits of kit, as Tim also had a compressor in the old rack for his vocals but that’s no longer needed either,” explains Ash’s drummer and monitor engineer, Rick McMurray. “Now that we have Qu-Pac, we can fit our in-ear monitor system in a flightcase and take it with us everywhere. The one thing you really miss at fly-in shows is having that part of the setup, but now the band are really comfortable, as we know our in-ears will be perfect.”

The Qu-Pac is mixing nine inputs from the band and four tracks, providing two sets of stereo in-ears and playback. The band are using Qu-Pac’s Qu-Drive playback for all of the backing tracks and running clicks for some songs. For future shows, there are plans to use the Qu app during live shows and install the rack off stage.

“I’m not really bothered that there's no faders. It’s great to have one screen to control everything, providing a good visual input of what you’re hearing and what's going on, with percentages so you can see how everything relates to each other,” continues McMurray. “I have my and Tim's in-ear mix set up so if he asks for something, I can tap a couple of buttons and adjust things quickly rather than find faders. It is definitely user-friendly for someone not technically minded like myself.”

American Music & Sound (Allen & Heath US Distributor)
http://www.americanmusicandsound.com