Currently touring the world in support of their recent Cleopatra album release, American folk rockers the Lumineers are playing the largest venues of their career – relying on acoustic instruments and singer Wesley Schultz’s voice for their success. Helping deliver their message, a Meyer Sound Leo Family system from Sound Image, offering a smooth transition from a smaller Leo Family rig used on earlier tour legs.
‘Moving up to arenas and scaling the size of the system to match has been seamless,’ says FOH engineer and system designer, Josh Osmond. ‘Although we tripled the box count, the response has remained as consistent as it was on a smaller scale and in outdoor venues. In arenas, I mix nearly 130ft from the stage, yet still get the same clarity and presence as if I were 90ft away.’
Osmond appreciates the system’s ability to serve cello, piano and other strings and percussive instruments when driven at rock levels. ‘Although this band has a folk/Americana image, the live show still needs to have a large sound while maintaining sonic clarity,’ he says. ‘With the Leo Family I get the power and impact of the show I am looking for while maintaining the natural sound of the sources coming from the stage.’
‘Meyer has done an excellent job creating linear phase responses throughout the Leo Family via delay integration, so voicing between Leo and Lyon has been relatively consistent from day to day,’ says system engineer Dave Shatto. ‘The additional SPL provided by the Leo allows us to throw to the 200-300 level while maintaining the spectral response of Lyon as heard at mix position.’
Leo’s long throw is also appreciated by Production Manager, Sara Full: ‘Leo has helped eliminate the need for delays in most scenarios, including in some very large venues,’ she says. ‘That not only helps provide a more consistent audience experience, but also improves sight lines, allows us to get more fans in the venue, and reduces logistical hassles and expenses.’
The Lumineers’ live show remains rooted in small houses on their native Denver music scene: ‘When they came to the bigger stuff they still wanted that [smaller] feel,’ says tour monitor engineer, Brad Galvin. ‘As a solution, they devised a B Stage located in the middle of the audience at each large venue, where they get up close and personal for a few songs mid-show.
‘Having a system with as smooth a response as this Leo Family system helps in having that translate accurately to the audience,’ he adds. ‘We’re able to keep it at the same volume, and the same system shaping and EQ from the main to B Stage, and it translates smoothly from one to the other.’
The smallest member of the Leo Family, Leopard has demonstrated its versatility on the tour, according to Sound Image Audio Crew Chief Cameron Whaley: ‘Leopard has been very helpful as the tour scaled to differently size venues. It’s powerful enough to use as a main system when we’ve had extreme weight restrictions while still maintaining the sonic quality and impact of our show. As a side or rear hang complement to Lyon, Leopard has no problem keeping up and makes our tuning easy with its very similar sonic characteristics.’
The complete system includes ten Leo boxes over eight Lyon per side for main hangs, 14 Lyon per side for down stage side hangs, 14 Leopard per side for upstage side hangs, 32 1100-LFC low-frequency control elements (16 flown, 12 ground-stacked LR plus four centre), six Leopard for front fill and Galileo loudspeaker management.