BottleRock Fest: From Sour To Sweet

The Napa Valley rock festival BottleRock stepped out from the long shadow of its troubled debut last year for a successful sequel that righted the wrongs and rocked the assembled masses for three days. Returning for a second go-round was Delicate Productions (Los Angeles), which provided video, lighting and audio for the event, including multiple Martin Audio MLA Systems.
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BottleRock 2014 presented a variety of acts, from Weezer (pictured) to TV On The Radio to Heart, through a Delicate Productions-provided Martin Audio MLA System.
Napa, CA (June 13, 2014)—The Napa Valley rock festival BottleRock stepped out from the long shadow of its troubled debut last year for a successful sequel that righted the wrongs and rocked the assembled masses for three days. Returning for a second go-round was Delicate Productions (Los Angeles), which provided video, lighting and audio for the event, including multiple Martin Audio MLA Systems.

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Under new management, BottleRock 2014 offered a variety of new and vintage acts, including The Cure, Outkast, Weezer, TV On The Radio, Heart, Third Eye Blind, Blues Traveler, Spin Doctors, Gin Blossoms and others, all the while reportedly avoiding the mistakes that plagued the inaugural edition in 2013. Jason Alt of Delicate Productions noted, “This year’s festival was smoother, more organized and better run. Participating vendors and artists were taken care of in advance and everyone had a very positive festival experience.”

If anything, Delicate became even more involved in the production this year, as it worked with the community to ensure proper coverage within the festival grounds and output control to prevent noise overspill in surrounding residential neighborhoods.

“The city of Napa didn’t have a noise ordinance until after last year’s event and we teamed with the city to establish one that would work for the festival and the city,” said Alt. “We came up with 105dB C-weighted at front of house, 110 feet from the stage, measured over an hour period average. This gave us enough latitude for bands to get louder for ten minutes at a time, which allowed for dynamics within that average without adversely affecting any artist’s performance. None of the artists or engineers had any issues with the noise ordinance. Even with the newly imposed time restrictions of stopping by 10pm, the festival went really well. And we had no noise complaints from those living near the festival site either.”

Part of this year’s new PA guidelines included removing the delay towers from the main stage to eliminate excess noise, which had no negative impact on coverage according to Alt, who noted that Delicate provided Martin Audio MLA and MLA Compact loudspeaker systems for the two main sponsored stages, Toshiba and Sprint. “It made the throw for MLA about 600 feet and the system still performed really well. The audience listening experience didn’t suffer at all. People were able to hear it and everything sounded really consistent and clear.”

The Toshiba main stage system consisted of two speaker clusters a side, each consisting of 16 Martin Audio MLA and two MLD (downfill) enclosures; 24 ground-stacked MLX subs; 12 W8LM speakers for front fills; two clusters for side fills, each containing 4 W8C, 4 W8CS compact subs, and 2 WS218X subs; and a half-dozen MLA Compact each as side hangs.

An Avid Profile 96/24 console was used for FOH, and Yamaha PM5D-RH, DSP5D and Avid Venue 48/24 consoles were used in monitorworld. A half-dozen Shure UHF-R wireless systems with SM58 capsules were also part of the main stage setup.

For the second (Sprint) stage, Delicate combined 18 Martin Audio MLA Compact enclosures per side with 12 DSX ground-stacked subs; 2 side fill clusters containing 2 W8Cs, 2 W8CS compact subs and a WS218X sub; 4 W8LCs for front fills and Martin Audio LE1200S and LE2100S stage monitors to complete the package.

While there may have been initial qualms about the lack of delays, reportedly those concerns were soon put to rest. Outkast FOH engineer Darcy Khan noted, “I enjoyed the system a lot. The most important thing was the clarity at 200 feet. I was skeptical about that because a lot of line arrays claim to have it but don’t deliver. And this is the only system I’ve come across that can produce enough low end with just 24 subs, but the way Delicate set it up with that block across the front of the stage, it was there. I was very pleased with it; the system really delivered the goods.”

Martin Audio
www.martin-audio.com