DJ and dubstep producer Excision, the champion of bass music and sensory overload, has begun his 2014 tour of the US and Canada with powerful Clay Paky A.leda B-EYE K20- LED-based moving lights, a cadre of Sharpys and grandMA2 lighting and laser control. A.C.T Lighting is the exclusive distributor of Clay Paky fixtures and MA Lighting in North America.
The Excision tour, featuring Dirtyphonics and ill.Gates, has been called a "virtual apocalypse of twisting and morphing sounds" that encompass a full range of genres. Excision is accompanied by a new 150,000-watt bass system from PK Audio and his Executioner video and light production.
The tour marks the first time that Light Action Productions has supplied B-EYEs, which have quickly become indispensible to lighting and laser designer Dave Hauss of Double Surface Designs LLC. "They're my go-to light right now," he says. "When I have to cut down the rig, B-EYE is always there. They are an all around great fixture, and artists love them. I wouldn't spec anything else."
Scott Humphrey with Light Action, says, "There's nothing else like the B-EYE out right now. It's a multi-event unit and great for electronic music. Some of its macros are great, and it gives a new take on retro effects."
Hauss says the overall lighting design for the tour "is different every day based on the specifics of all kinds of venues; we play rooms for 1,000 to 10,000 people. It's very city-to-city, and we have to ramp up and down. The continuing challenges are trim heights, width and weight capacity. I need to go in each day and adapt. That means I'm programming every day of the tour. What's so great about the Clay Paky fixtures is that I have almost as many designs as venues. This tour is one of the most unique experiences I've ever had."
Hauss deploys eight B-EYEs "for everything from an incredibly bright wash for the openers to effects lights for the show. The entire show is projection mapped, and we needed fixtures that wouldn't get lost. I use the B-EYEs in their shaper mode: splitting up the beam and dispersing the light is a great way to make it stand out. We can even take out the downstage truss because of the low trim. I like their color temperature a lot, and their field is amazingly even."
Hauss has 20 Clay Paky Sharpys supplied by Christie Lites, which he calls "critical to the show." He notes that his biggest challenge is that "this is a video shows with very large set pieces with very bright images - 90 minutes of custom content. You don't want very wide ambient light. Sharpy is sharp enough to give a great light show without blowing out all the video - it's the only fixture that won't impede the visuals yet delivers all kinds of tricks."
The grandMA2 Light controls the lights, lasers and set pieces in the show. "The set has pneumatic windows with lights hidden in them," Hauss explains. "Everything is DMX controlled and built for Excision to use live. So the artist sends MIDI commands to the grandMA2 to trigger the windows on the fly. Once he executes the set pieces I follow with the lighting - all through one grandMA2 with one NPU." Hauss also serves as the grandMA2 programmer for the tour.
James Castaneda is the lighting tech for the tour and Dillion Butz and Cam McNeil of Beama Visual are the media server programmer and projectionist, respectively. The special effects vendor is Image Engineering. Brett Able is the tour manager.