Yesterday we had our first show after a long 4.5 year break. And it was amazing. What made the show even more special was you – the people who had braved Bangalore traffic, a dug-up Church Street and the late evening drizzle to attend this special event.
Mriganka Baruah, the resident engineer of blueFrog, helped us setup our sound. He did a phenomenal job!
This was also our first live show with Shounak and Sricharan. We had gelled pretty well and were confident that the show would be pretty tight.
We played a one-and-a-half hour setlist spanning our catalogue and also threw in a couple of covers to spice things up.
Korak’s brother, Mouktik, or as he is commonly known as, Tintin, visited us last Sunday. We have known him ever since he was a high school student.
We had also carried a few cameras to record our rehearsals. It is an indispensable tool to analyse and work on parts at the comfort of our homes at a later time.
Last week’s session with Shounak really helped me dial in my tones. He has much more experience as a stage musician than me. He has this sense of what tones may work on stage even if it sounds weird in isolation. I was pretty happy with the improvement. I must say we are getting closer in terms of sound and tightness. Two more sessions and we will have the entire 12-track setlist nailed.
Here is a collage of various songs we had filmed for our reference –
Tintin is gearing up for his graduate studies. We wish him all the very best in his academic and musical endeavours.
L-R: Sudipto, Sricharan, Tintin, Korak, Shounak and me.
Today, Shounak came to my house. Our agenda was to sort out the tones for live usage. We both had pedals to incorporate into our setup and set a rough tone that can be used as a seed while tweaking the parameters for each venue.
Shounak had borrowed an old Korg AX5G and wanted to use it as a modulation unit. Digital multi-fx units are notorious as drive pedals. They also suck away some headroom. Shounak fit it right between his drive pedals and delay pedal. It only had a bank up and bank down. He decided to keep all effects in odd number banks and keep a bypass patch in all even numbered banks. This way he is always one stomp away from disabling the patch.
I had got a new noise suppression pedal (NS-2). Shounak has been using one for quite some time. He suggested that I get one, too, as the high-gain patches had quite a bit of noise in the live setting. It worked as expected. He also suggested that I pre-drive my signal using my Overdrive (OD-3) pedal before sending it to my Metal Zone (MT-2) pedal. This clearly helped out with the body of the tone.
We also decided to use two pizzas to improve the crispiness and the meatiness of the tones.
This was our third practice after re-grouping. I felt we were getting pretty tight. Considering the fact that we had not played a live show in 4 years and 3 months, we all felt pretty confident.
Shounak and Sricharan are two of the most proficient musicians I have personally come across. They have been picking up our catalogue pretty fast. In no time we were almost done with our standard ten song / one and a half hour setlist.
Sricharan suggested that we include a Mutemath song and gave us a list of possible ones that we could cover. We zeroed in on Typical. It’s a great fast-paced number. Here is how our first attempt at covering it went –
A few more sessions and it would feel like we hadn’t even taken a break!