London, UK (October 14, 2015)—Long-running UK dance act Faithless is on the festival circuit promoting its latest collection, Faithless 2.0, with its FOH engineer of the last two decades, Mark Kennedy, manning an SSL Live L500 console supplied by Britannia Row Productions.
On the Faithless show, there are 56 inputs from the stage including feeds, from a large percussion section, standard drum kit, bass guitar, four sets of keyboards and three vocal mics. Kennedy calls it a 'tricky' mix. "People will walk on and walk off throughout the show," he explains. "They'll walk off with the radio mic and put it down and start chatting to people offstage, and that's the least of your worries."
"Sister Bliss likes all of her keyboards to be velocity sensitive, so depending on what mood she's in, we can go from a whisper to a scream. You have to be so on the whole thing all of the time."
According to Kennedy, the SSL Live L500 is perfect for the job on several fronts. First and foremost is the sound: "Festivals are the best place possible to tell what your board sounds like because every other guy has every type of board possible…. In an analog mixer, with a fader at five or eight dB down, the channel is quiet but doesn't drop out of the mix. With most digital consoles that channel would be gone, but that doesn’t happen with the SSL; it stays there. And the stereo separation is amazing—on one recent show, we were pushed a long way over to one side of this big festival. You could still hear what was coming out of the left so clearly, it was incredible. It really was amazing."
Because the Faithless show is so unpredictable, Kennedy is hands-on from beginning to end: "I use snapshots to get me to the starting point of a song. After that, it's mixed freehand. One thing I love about the SSL is that I can do two things at the same time. I can be on the right hand side EQing something on the Channel Control Tile while I'm pushing up VCAs with my left hand."
Solid State Logic