I finally got the time to update the end of my Oasis days. Yes it all came to a screaming halt at the end of August 2009. The band only had 2 shows to go but they just could not go the distance. I must not grumble as I was with them 10 years and got to mix the biggest shows ever and 4 separate tours through Wembley Stadium over the years was a major highlight. I did say to myself that when I started that if I ever got to Wembley from Australia then I couldn’t ask for more. It took me 18 years of mixing to get there!
In a roundup of the tour I must say that going back to the XL4 console was the best decision I ever made when it comes to live sound. I’ve heard it all and mixed on them all and there simply is no better sound on the planet and I feel there never will be as there seems to be little interest in analogue or just from us older dudes.( old dog and new tricks again)
From the first soundcheck I knew it was right. Huge bottom end and everything sounded like it always has for the last 25 years and with no more than 3db eq on any channel. In fact out of the 36chls 16 of them were flat. You cannot achieve that with a digital board and I challenge anyone to do so ( there I go again!). My line checks lasted 5minutes as its sounded perfect every time we turned it on. Maybe the D&B J had something to do with that but when I was on digital it always took over 40mins to get it close. The bloody drums where never right. Hmm copper and resistance verses light and 1’s & 0’s. am I going too far?..
Anyhow that is my preference re mixing and I have heard plenty of good mixes on digital so I guess it’s just not for me.
Now how about the speaker system you say. The D&B J system was inspirational in its sound. Unbelievable I would say in its clarity. It simply sounded the same every day no matter where. From 5000 – 100,000 people that system was fantastic. The outdoor stadium tours with 100 J boxes 32 B2 subs and 24 J subs proved to be the highlights.
We went from a Vdosc system one festival and back to the J system the next day and we were all amazed at the difference. Sounded like 10 years difference to me! Nothing wrong with the Vdosc and it sounds great but next to each other I don’t see why you would bother with Vdosc. That’s me!
Daniel Lewis from the UK who was my system rigger and Bruce backup engineer for my entire life with Oasis would say the same. We tried all the systems we could over the years I had him rigging every system we could and in the end we both agreed that the J system was the best of the lot.
We tried the B2 sub cardiod array to see what results we got. Firstly we tried it at the Manchester outdoor show to 80,000 punters. We did 10 stacks of 3 B2’s across the front of the stage with the J-subs flown. We did get an even sub across the field as advertised but the sub sound did sound really soggy and not tight at all. In fact all the amps started clipping. After the first show we went back to 4 stacks of 8 B2’s and got the punch back which was the best for Oasis. We did try it in a few smaller venues and got a good even sound but a real 50hz note in the sound. Really if you want to do cardiod you need twice the boxes and power to achieve the punch. That was our take on it.
Oasis played the best they ever did and they sounded like it. After all the line-up changes over the years it finally got there and those songs just sounded great.
The crowds got bigger and we did stadiums all over the world this time. One of the great moments was when we lost power to the FOH drive (UPS died) at Wembley Stadium during Wonder Wall. The crowd just sang the song and I went out front of the tower and looked around and just took it in. 65,000 punters singing the song until the end. Never to be repeated. They are the memories.
It will be missed as I feel that I will not get myself motivated to go through all the work to get back there. Anyhow, enough of that!
I have put up some photos of the last tour from all over the place. Maybe this is it and I’ll live happily ever after running JAS?..Stay tuned and I’ll see how long I can resist the XL4 pull!!
54 x J Subs in Cardiod
Ireland - Slane Castle
France - Old Roman Theatre
Lots of Y 18's
My FOH Position
Noel's Guitar before the last show
Liam's Guitar before the last show
The aftermath - Noel's Guitar after the last show
Stadium Acts - Lineup
Dan's mixing... I don't know where I am