Several variations of the design have been developed to deliver as much show continuity as possible (photo: Guy Eppel)
Europe - Mumford & Sons are on the road in support of their Wilder Mind third studio album, currently in Europe playing a mix of own-show headliners and festivals in picturesque locations.

LD Ed Warren specified 32 x Robe BMFL Spots and 10 x CycFX 8s which are being supplied by Neg Earth in the UK and Europe and Solotech Canada for the North American sections of the tour.

As the full rig can only be realised in a few locations in Europe, several variations of the design have been developed to deliver as much show continuity as possible, even when able to install only the minimum lighting elements.

It's the first time that Ed has designed BMFL Spots into a touring rig - to which he is adding his own touches of visual magic and invention. Eighteen BMFLs are spread out across three U-shaped trusses which increase in size and also all move on a Kinesys automation system. The fixtures are alternated with bars of 6 PARs in a juxtaposition between classic and the very latest stage lighting technologies.

Ten BMFL Spots on the front truss are used for key lights, front stage washes and audience illumination and five BMFL Spots on the upstage risers shoot into the crowd and produce dramatic through-the-band shots. They are the main moving lights of the show.

The CycFX 8 is another first for Ed on this tour, picked after seeing them demo'd at the Robe factory in the Czech Republic.

They are positioned in a line upstage to up-light the custom backdrop which was made by Hangman, comprising ten 8 ft wide by 20ft tall frames, fitted with 30 degree angled slats for a louvered look. These are made from a metallic cloth and velcroed over onto the frame, adding a background presence and a 3D feel to the stage space.

Ed has been using Robe products regularly in his work for the last 2 - 3 years and was one of the LDs who first saw the prototype BMFL Spot at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. "They are great," he comments, "Fast, bright and do everything I need."

The lighting aesthetic for this tour is about creating large and dynamic rock 'n' roll 'moments' with a modern edge, rather than about visible movement. Instead, it concentrates on the subtleties and finesse of changing colours, silhouettes and the nature of the sources.

Much of the band's album artwork, press and publicity shots feature neon lighting effects, so Ed had bespoke neon strips fabricated which are attached to the back frames, the trusses and staging. He worked closely with Light Initiative team to create 120 LED-framed PAR cans at the back, which add several new dimensions to that classic original rock 'n' roll lightsource which is combined thoughtfully with the BMFL Spots and CycFX 8s.

(Jim Evans)

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