MLA played an active role on three stages: Sky Stage, Sunset Stage and Buzz Stage
Japan - After cancellations had been imposed on Japanese outdoor festivals with the outbreak of COVID-19 - followed by restrictions (including masks to be worn) - finally this year all regulations were lifted, and large-scale rock festivals returned to the annual calendar.
Japan Jam 2023 was no exception. The event is held over Japan’s Golden Week holidays and sets out to honour the best rock music performed by domestic musicians. Artists are drawn from alternative, indie, metal and other rock music genres, and this year the festival saw a record number of participants.
But Chiba City Soga Sports Park, where Japan Jam takes place, is surrounded by heavily populated residential and commercial areas. And so with the lifting of restrictions, and requirement for a higher SPL to be reinstated, emphasis needed to be placed on tight noise control, to prevent sound from escaping into the adjoining neighbourhood. To counter this, Japan Jam 2023 needed to adopt a far from conventional approach.
Promoters - the music journal Rockin’On - are responsible for both this event and the popular Rock in Japan festival. Mindful of the successful solution deployed at last year’s Rock In Japan, they once again turned to MSI Japan’s Martin Audio MLA.
With 10 years’ experience working with MLA, the PA set-up was artfully designed by MSI Japan’s engineering team. Each of the two main stages supported hangs of eight MLA enclosures. In addition, seven MLA delay towers were installed at four locations each, for a total of eight different positions. Normally, delay towers are installed on both wings of the audience area, but this time it was installed only on one side, making it possible to minimise leakage outside the main sound field.
MSI Japan chairman, Shuzo Fujii, was in charge of the Japan Jam system. “We had to control sound escape outside the venue to an unprecedented level, but [with Martin Audio’s DISPLAY optimisation software] the results were easy to obtain,” he confirmed. “Inside the audience field the audio experience was completely different to outside the perimeter. It was amazing how much sound pressure and quality was provided to avoid it leaking out. I felt that this outdoor festival was a moment that once again proved the high level of MLA’s controllability.”
This year, MLA played an active role on three stages: Sky Stage, Sunset Stage and Buzz Stage, although due to inclement weather the Sunset Stage had to be cancelled on the final day due to strong winds.

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