Sound fellas: the fine art of mixing for a festival stage

James Murphy is bringing his Despacio to Glasto: what’s the best sound you’ve ever heard at a festival?

Despacio soundsystem: it’s got Dolby noise reduction and everything

Despacio soundsystem: it’s got Dolby noise reduction and everything

 

Those making the trip to Glastonbury just got an extra sweetener, with the news that James Murphy and Soulwax pair David and Stephen Dewaele are bringing their Despacio soundsystem to the festival.

This is music-nerd heaven: the unreal rig was put together by Murphy with New York sound engineer John Klett, and made its debut at last year’s Manchester International Festival. If you scooped out the inside of a mirrorball’s brain it might look a little something like this.

Murphy has rightly got a reputation as one of music’s thinkers, and labours over the nitty gritty of the texture and sound of his records and work. This isn’t something that often translates into a festival setting: in the hustle and bustle of running live shows in a field, sound engineering is often a necessarily efficient rather than an artistic business.

But when artists and production crew take a long, hard look at the backline, the results can be spectacular. The Despacio soundsystem is becoming a legend in its own aural lifetime. Two years ago at Body and Soul, I remember being utterly blown away by the sound on the Upstage, specially built by Le Tissier and Slipdraft. I haven’t heard a better festival stage since.

So what’s the best sound you’ve heard at a festival? And would any sound engineers out there like to big up some of their mates who never get a mention for the sterling work they do driving the desk?

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.