Robe REDWash 3-192s Used for Massive Attack Tour

by PLSN Staff • in
  • International News
• Created: October 8, 2009

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MOSCOW — Robe REDWash 3-192 LED wash fixtures are being used for a lighting special effect on Massive Attack’s latest tour of the U.K. and Europe. Robin Haddow designed the rig and all lighting equipment is being supplied by HSL. The tour also includes 15 Robe ColorSpot 250ATs. They are attached to the bases of 15 custom Barco O-Lite video columns, which join together to make a 15-meter-wide, by three-meter-high upstage screen.

The show is primarily backlit, however there are also eight Robe ColorSpot and ColorWash 700E ATs positioned on stands and flightcases on both sides of the stage. These deliver the front lighting, side lighting, and keylighting when needed.

The REDWashes are attached to eight custom-designed trussing sections, which were fabricated by HSL to streamline the load-in. The eight vertical truss sections all sit on the floor behind the screen, attached to a mother grid in the roof, controlled via a three-way Kinesys automation system.

The REDWashes are first revealed during “Angel,” about mid-way through the set, when they are raised above the screen. This has significant impact and works as an element of surprise as they appear from nowhere, and are then used more frequently towards the end of the set.

Haddow described the REDWashes as his “favorite” lighting moment of the show. “The light output is amazing,” he said, adding that the fact that they also have a white LED in addition to RGB functionality gives them an edge, because they are able to produce a “real” white — something that can be problematic for LED units. He noted that different colors, qualities and layers of white light are crucial to the Massive Attack show.

He also likes the homogenization of the REDWash LEDs so the source resembles the smoothness of an incandescent lamp. This is something that Robe has worked hard at to make a feature of its LED ranges. The rectangular shape of the REDWash light-source complements the elongated form of the O-Lite screen.

The ColorWash 250E ATs in the frames have been a feature of the band’s lightshow since the O-Lite was first used in 2008. Haddow said that they are very bright for such a compact source and well suited for the low-level beam-work and silhouetting effects. Their small size means they don’t intrude on the stage space.

Massive Attack is known for the innovative integration of technology into their stage visuals, and this tour is another evolution in that process. Haddow worked closely with show and video designers United Visual Artists (UVA) to develop the live visuals.

Haddow controls the show using a Hog 3. This is also driving a PixelMAD computer that runs video content sent to the REDWashes some of the time, and they are also programmed into the Hog as regular lightsources. The D3 system running video content for the screen also controls specific lighting cues.

The tour is scheduled to continue until the end of November.

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