Cats On Trees on the road
France - Live sound engineer Verlaine Levis used to think that DPA microphones were only suited to classical music and never imagined that their microphones were also appropriate for pop rock tours. Since using a selection of DPA mics on the current Cats On Trees tour, Levis is the first to admit that his initial perception was entirely wrong.

"When DPA's French distributor Audio² gave me the opportunity to try the company's microphones with Cats On Trees, I was happy to accept the challenge," Levis says. "It didn't take long to discover that these great microphones have beefy pickups and are perfectly suited to rock and pop acts. We're now using three d:facto Vocal Microphones, as well as a d:dicate ST2011C Stereo Pair with 2011C Compact Cardioids and a number of d:vote 4099 Instrument Microphones for drums and violins."

"The tour is awesome and they are playing to virtually full houses every time," Levis says. "Since September, they have been performing with a string quartet, but because we have such a busy touring schedule, there hasn't been much time for residency work or to prepare the mix. Therefore, the show is being built as we go along."

Levis runs the front-of-house sound, the mix for the in-ear monitors and the shipment of sequences since he mixes upstream. "With the help of our lighting person, we have set up a network between sound, light and stage," he explains. "He controls the lights and video via a MIDI controller, but I am the master of the Mac, which manages the sequences and the network. Feeling comfortable is of ultimate importance to the artist, so I try hard to achieve that. With this duo, it is very difficult to create a show that is the same every time because they are constantly changing things."

(Jim Evans)

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