We spoke to Christian Murphy, Tyler, the Creator’s monitor engineer to discuss the choice to use Waves eMotion LV1 for the Igor tour.
Grammy-winning hip hop artist Tyler, the Creator has been touring in celebration of his most recent, critically acclaimed album, Igor. We spoke to monitor engineer Christian “Murph” Murphy (Run the Jewels, Mike Posner) to find out why he chose Waves tools, including the eMotion LV1 live mixer, for the tour.
Murph runs the Waves eMotion LV1 software mixer on a Waves Axis One computer custom-designed and optimized to run Waves audio applications. His setup also includes a Waves SoundGrid Extreme Server-C and a SoundStudio STG-1608, all connected by a NETGEAR GS108 switch, two Dell P2418HT touchscreens, and an Icon Platform M Controller with an Icon D2 display. “Everything but the controller is placed in a slick OCD Labs LV1 LiteFly case,” Murph says, “with the entire system weighing only about 65 lbs.”
Discussing the choice of LV1 for the tour, Murph says, “I was looking for a flexible and flyable rig under 70 lbs, and I had been using Waves on other desks and in the studio for a while. Since I was already integrated into the Waves universe, I thought that using eMotion LV1 would be a good solution.”
Waves plugins are also a big part of Tyler, the Creator’s live sound, Murph says. “First of all, I use Dorrough meters on everything. They are beautiful as well as accurate—a lovely way to start your rack. I place the Primary Source Expander plugin on all vocal mics to reduce the crowd noise: it’s probably my favorite gate, and I love the simple layout and controls. It also does an excellent job at eliminating feedback.”
Discussing his go-to plugin choices, Murph says, “On Tyler’s vocal I use Waves’ Abbey Road Reverb Plates and H-Delay and have recently been playing with Waves’ new MDMX Distortion Modules using the FUZZ. Tyler and I sat down, played together with the parameters, and came up with something pretty badass in a matter of seconds. I can’t wait to spend more time with the MDMX plugins. I also use the Waves GEQ Graphic Equalizer. I like the RTA component and utilizing the plugin’s ‘Classic’ component on the outputs that go to the speakers.”
Commenting on the LV1’s small footprint, Murph says, “One of my main considerations choosing the LV1 was that I love how portable this system is: the entire system fits in a Pelican 1637 Air Case, except the I/O which I have in one other case… It’s so simple that I take it on all my fly dates. Space is always a consideration, especially in a festival scenario, so the minimal footprint of my eMotion LV1 is absolutely crucial.” All I have to do is plug in one Ethernet cable, and I’m ready to rock.”
“I also love how easy it is to customize the LV1,” Murph adds. “You can change the order of the plugins in your rack or slide around channels in a custom mixer layer with the swipe of a finger. I like the user-assignable keys to turn plugins on and off, or switch between A and B inputs for virtual soundcheck. I am also happy that Waves added a tap tempo button to the top of the main screen.”
Summing up with the sound quality, Murph notes, “Portability and flexibility are one side of the coin; sound quality is another. “Everyone I’ve ever talked to loves how the LV1 sounds.” “It’s a super-tight sound: I just set the gain, turn up the fader and boom—a warm and punchy vibe before I even touch the EQ.”
Want more on live sound? Hear about Waves on tour with Rosalía.
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