Glastonbury Festival

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Glastonbury Festival

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In 2017, Neuron were given the honour of providing high power, high fidelity audio systems for not just one, but two 5000 capacity arenas along with multiple stages of DJ and live backline across the immensely creative South East Corner area of the world’s most famous festival, Glastonbury.

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Temple Stage

The Temple stage, located in The Common and sporting a fresh redesign and increased capacity to more than double the size of prior years. However, production manager Steve Bedlam was keen to avoid moving toward a traditional left and right hang of line array, as well as keeping performers on the floor amongst the crowd, with a real old school club feel where dancers faced each other instead of the more common theme of DJ worship on a large stage platform. Not only this, but the Glastonbury site is notoriously large both in scale and number of sound sources, whilst being nearby to a picturesque historic village, so noise control was also an essential part of the overall design brief.

Following predictive simulations using the manufacturer provided Direct software, and a half scale demonstration at a Bristol location of the system’s capabilities and clarity, the Temple stage in 2017 featured a world first four-point Danley Jericho system tuned as a modern update of the legendary dance clubs of the 80s and 90s, with OS80 balcony fills and SH96 front fills. Supported by no less than 22x 18” Tapped Horn subwoofers on the bottom end, in a combined three position end fire and CSA gradient array, the system lived up to its marketing of keeping the sound pressure levels high, with immense dynamic range and peak capability with remarkably consistent tonality across the entire 45m x 45m area, whilst being almost inaudible off site at the noise sensitive properties as well as on other stages.

 A 3D render of the speaker placement alongside the finalised set design and stage layout

A 3D render of the speaker placement alongside the finalised set design and stage layout

 The completed four-point Jericho installation, before set dressing and lighting programming

The completed four-point Jericho installation, before set dressing and lighting programming

This large scale, pioneering design was the result of months of intensive work in pre-production, simulation, and collaboration with the venue’s decor, lighting and visual teams as well as the overall festival production team, along with on-site verification, tuning and careful alignment using various tools and techniques that we have learned and developed over the past ten years. It’s safe to say that the results drew superlative accolades from the crowd, the media, the artists and the production alike, as well as being graced by festival owner Michael Eavis for the opening ceremony - proving that a holistic but diverse approach to traditional problems can truly pay off.

You can read more detail about this deployment on Danley Sound Labs’ own website here:
https://www.danleysoundlabs.com/danley-jericho-horns-subwoofers-and-amps-rock-at-glastonbury/

We look forward to being welcomed back for more of the same in the future!

Clash Stage

A couple hundred metres over from the Common is the infamous Shangri-La area, long known for it’s incredible levels of creativity shown by guest art curators, set designs, and ever changing themes. New for 2017 was the Clash stage, designed to celebrate historic sound system and rave culture by placing two distinct speaker systems side by side and inviting crews and collectives of musicians from around the world to go head to head for the crowd’s adoration, round by round.

The dance floor was surrounded on all sides by 40ft shipping containers, providing an industrial aesthetic reminsicent of both the warehouse and field locations associated with formative parties of the dance music scene as well as keeping the insane sound pressure levels contained from spillage into the nearby live stages. The brief from Seain Loughling, head of production for Shangri La, was equal parts intensity and clarity, whilst remaining distinct and avoiding a ‘black box’ approach. Going up against the green machine of Noise Control Audio also meant we needed to pack some serious low end, which left only one choice from our perspective - to deploy our almighty Incubus custom built by the boffins at Void Acoustics back in 2013.

Both systems were restricted to 12x dual 18” subs deployed in end fire configuration to ensure a fair fight, meaning the sub section of the Incubus was replaced with Stasys X Air in matching silver, and combined with the quad 15” Hyperfold kick section alongside both Air Array mid-high cabinets splayed to create a broadside array with minimal comb filtering and interference.

Cruising at 105dBA at the mix position some 30m back from the two container stages, flanked by their respective rigs, the systems were amongst the loudest, deepest and clearest on site, belying their small stature and providing plenty of punch for the 5000+ punters who were present from start to finish each day.

As ever, a non-standard setup delivered with the same care and attention to detail as any normal gig by our team!