ADLIB Audio supplied sound systems for all five stages at Liverpool’s famous Mathew Street Festival – celebrating its 10th anniversary – which 300,000 people into downtown Liverpool for a manic Bank Holiday Monday.
Photo caption: The Stage in full swing at Chevasse Park
The festival also merged with the culmination of the week-long International Beatles Convention, which saw presentations, talks, seminars and markets dedicated to every possible aspect of Liverpool’s best known export, The Fab Four, plus performances by over 300 Beatles bands from across the globe. This took place in three venues around town, all of which were also serviced by ADLIB.
ADLIB deployed over 40 crew, working in round-the-clock shifts between the different sites involved in these two events …. And that’s in addition to pumping up the volume in the Essential Mix Arena at Creamfields, the annual dance festival staged at old Speke Airfield.
Mathew Street Festival
ADLIB has supplied sound for the Mathew Street Festival since it’s inception 10 years ago, and has seen it grow into the major event it is today – now the UK’s largest free annual outdoor music festival.
Photo caption:Tim Dalton FOH at Castle Street
Run by Liverpool City Council’s Cultural Events Department in partnership with Cavern City Tours, the Festival started modestly with one stage at Chevasse Park on the Friday, and built through the Saturday to a Monday crescendo, when four more major stages appeared at Water, Dale, Castle and Victoria Streets.
The Monday saw over 50 excellent local bands perform including Elevation the U2 Experience, Rocks Off, the Stereotonics, Claptonite, Crowded Scouse, the Cavern’s “Battle of The Bands” winners, Reece, and many more.
At Chevasse Park, ADLIB supplied a JBL VerTec system, stacked to ensure even coverage across the large grassed area – with a capacity of 25,000. The VerTec was also chosen because of it’s advantages for containing the sound within the park. Monitors were ADLIB AP15s, and console wise, they had a Soundcraft Series 5 at FOH and a Midas XL3 onstage. The system was run by Dave Kay and Graham Smith at FOH and Kenny Perrin on monitors.
Photo caption: James Coates (L) & Hassane Es Siahi do monitors at Castle Street
This site dealt with a massive variety of performance and music, starting with the 2003 Voices, a 500-strong vocal choir, followed by a clutch of Beatles bands on Saturday, peaking with Monday’s mass-highlights including an incendiary performance by U2 tribute band Elevation, starring ADLIB’s own Mark Roberts on drums!
Two of the city centre stages featured ADLIB FD sound systems and at Victoria and Castle Street – the larger venues – Nexo Alpha Pas were deployed.
The pre-rig for the in-town stages started at 7 a.m. on the Monday, ready for a midday kick off, and involved a tight logistical and practical plan of action, masterminded by Mark Roberts and Phil Kielty.
The International Beatles Convention
Photo caption: Dave Kay (L) and Phil Kielty tussle with logistics
ADLIB’s association with this event, promoted by Cavern City Tours also goes back some way – to 1982!
The three main venues in 2003 were the Adelphi Hotel, the Royal Court Theatre and the Barcelona Club, where hundreds of the very best of Beatles bands from all over the world performed for the legendary event.
This year, ADLIB supplied a Nexo Alpha system to the Royal Court Theatre, together with two Midas Heritage H3000 consoles, run by Paul Roberts FOH and Marc Peers on monitors.
In The Adelphi, they supplied up to four systems in different rooms and bars for both bands and speakers, including an ADLIB FD system and a Soundcraft Series 5 console for the main ballroom. This saw some long days of activity starting at 9 a.m. and finishing at 4 a.m. the next day!
ADLIB’s sister company ADLite also supplied lighting for the Adelphi and Royal Court stages.
Photo caption: Kenny ‘Blazin’ Squad’ Perrin on monitors at Chevasse Park
“Allowing for sleep” was the biggest planning challenge of the whole weekend states ADLIB’s Andy Dockerty, adding that they also had to think on their feet a lot, as there was no prep time at any of the venues, and often little or no information available about the individual band’s sonic and backline needs in advance …… and as always, everyone’s production expectations were the very highest.
By complete contrast, ADLIB Audio supplied a kicking sound system for the Essential Mix Arena (with Pete Tong) at Creamfields 2003.
The system consisted of 16 stacks of Nexo Alpha powered by Crown amplifiers, an Allen & Heath Xone mixer and Mix Wizard, three Technics 1210 decks, two Pioneer CDJ1000 CD players, Behringer compressors and a Shure Premier radio mic system. The ADLIB crew of 4 was headed by Hassane Es Siahi & James Neale.
The tent saw a dynamic and grooving mix of sounds, styles and performances from Sasha, Timo Maas, Steve Lawler, Paul Bleasdale, Hyper and many more.