British band Bastille burst onto the American scene less than a year ago, and has grown from a band with one hit single to a certified concert headliner due largely to its electrifying live shows. Thunder Audio has been an integral part of the production since before it even reached the US.
The band’s production team met with Thunder Audio pre-tour to discuss the unique challenges that they’d face in bringing the exact same show to Bastille fans every night, despite tight load in- and out- times and an incredibly varied list of venues – from sports arenas to intimate theaters – with the resulting mix of gear rigging restrictions and sonic differences. As a result, the touring sound company specified a portion of its newly acquired L-Acoustics K1 complement – including 24 K1 and 30 Kara enclosures, plus a dozen SB28 subs – which has already proven to meet and exceed the band’s and fans’ expectations.
FOH engineer Paul Cooper has been with Bastille for over two years. When the band began planning its North American tour, the Bastille crew immediately contacted Thunder Audio. “As soon as the band was at the point where we were ready to start carrying our own gear, we called Thunder,’ says Cooper. “They were strongly recommended by our gear contacts in the UK, and as soon as we met with them we knew we’d all get on well.’
Jonny Winkler is Bastille’s systems engineer. He says the essential element that makes Thunder Audio the ideal touring partner is a commitment by company principals Tony Villarreal and Paul Owen to always reach for the next level of technology. “Paul and Tony are audio engineers themselves, and that’s so key for us,’ he says. “They are completely committed to keeping up with the constantly changing technology, and the L-Acoustics K System is a great example of the best technology available to live sound engineers right now.’ Winkler notes that the system is easy to load and the consistent results that it delivers not only makes his job easier, but helps him to build a rapport and level of trust with the FOH engineers by allowing him to deliver the same quality night after night.