Audio Logic Systems (ALS) celebrated a 20th anniversary milestone this September with a bash replete with music, food and drinks at their Minneapolis headquarters, and took on the production for a major concert event at the historic Loring Theater.
The Loring concert in Minneapolis saw the The Family re-emerge after nearly three decades apart, under the name fDeluxe.
The reunion show brought together four of the original members from The Family — “St. Paul” Peterson, Jellybean Johnson, Susannah Melvoin and Eric Leeds — whose 1986 self-titled Prince-produced album received critical acclaim (and produced the single, 'Nothing Compares 2 U', famously covered by Sinead O'Connor). But after one sell-out show at First Avenue, the band went their separate ways. The Loring concert in Minneapolis saw the group re-emerge after nearly three decades apart, under a new name (fDeluxe) and celebrating the release of their new CD, 'Gaslight'.
Audio Logic owner John Markiewicz and systems tech Ed Coutu brought in a full d&b audiotechnik system comprised of J-SUBs, J Infra Subs and C7 mid-high cabs, Q10 front fills, with d&b M6 wedges, plus two DiGiCo consoles—an SD8 at FOH and an SD10—for handling the group’s wedges and in-ear monitoring systems. He was confident the consoles would be up to the task of handling the sizeable production with exceptional sonics and ease. Since 2009, they’ve purchased a total of three DiGiCo consoles and have plans for adding a fourth in the coming year.
“At Audio Logic, we take pride in the sound systems we use in production, and the union of the DiGiCo desk, whose sound quality is second to none, into the phenomenally sounding d&b audiotechnik systems is a marriage made in heaven. We don’t even use drive racks anymore, we just go straight out of the desk through AES directly into the amps—there’s nothing in between—and our sound quality is just fantastic.”
Initially the input list was quite large, with provisions for the 7-piece band — which included the core Family members, plus guitarist Oliver Leiber, Jason-Peterson DeLaire on keys/sax, and drummer Mario Dawson — in addition to a 6-piece string section. In the end, it was decided that the inputs needed to be scaled back to a manageable 46.
“The initial stage set called for two drums sets because original drummer Jellybean Johnson (playing bass in the new band) was left-handed and wanted to sit in on a few songs,” Markiewicz said. “As things got scaled back, we were only able to use one drum set, with the tech switching kits back and forth on those songs... Which were not played in sequence.”
“On top of that, I found out a day-and-a-half before the show that KTCA, the Minnesota public TV station, had plans to record the show, so there was the addition of a few extra mics added for that. We agreed that since we were already tracking the show at FOH using an RME MADIFace we could simply split the feed. I set up KTCA’S engineer, Joe Demko, with a mono feed from my console to sync up in post, which would give them more control over the quality of it. Post mix engineer Brian ‘Snowman’ Powers was given an additional MADIface interface in monitor world and he tracked the whole show there.”