Archive for February 19th, 2014

Sabaton storms ahead with Sennheiser

Old Lyme, CT, February 19, 2014: Swedish heavy metal act Sabaton are currently preparing to head stateside in April to join two other bands – American metallers Iced Earth and the Dutch metal band Revamp – for the Worldwide Plagues tour which takes them to all four corners of the US and Canada. Sabaton will be using the tour to support their latest DVD, Swedish Empire Live. Filmed in front of 600,000+ enthusiastic fans at their headlining festival appearance at Poland’s Woodstock festival, Swedish Empire Live captures the band’s high-energy live stage show celebrating the triumph of the human spirit. Sabaton, who perform with a full complement of Sennheiser microphones and wireless systems, will be returning to European soil at the end of May where they will be headlining at some of Europe’s biggest heavy metal festivals.

Formed in 1999, in Falun, Sweden, the band’s massive popularity has remained unscathed even though many of the original members have chosen different directions. Band spokesman and bassist Pär Sundström and lead singer Joakim Brodén, whose distinctive vocals have characterised the Sabaton sound from the very beginning, remain at the core of the new line-up announced in April 2012.

When it comes to choice of equipment, microphones are a subject close to the band’s heart (not to mention vocal chords…). Sabaton uses Sennheiser microphones throughout, and for good reason according to monitor engineer Otto Kroymann. “Joakim Brodén, our lead singer, has such a wide dynamic range that we have had real problems finding a suitable microphone,” he explained. “However, when we had the chance to test the Sennheiser SKM 2000 wireless system combined with the MMD 945 capsule, we knew that our search was over. The microphone is really well suited to Joakim’s dynamic range and the sonic quality is exactly what both engineers – me on monitors and Elvis [Elfstrom] at FoH – were looking for.”

Brodén himself is very happy with the results. “I liked the feel of it from the start,” he said. “It has just the right balance for my style.” He uses a total of three handheld SKM 2000 / MMD 945 systems during the show as they have to be changed regularly to keep them dry.

As a result of this positive experience, it was decided to switch the rest of the band over to Sennheiser vocal microphones as well. “The audio quality and tone were just perfect for the whole show,” reported Kroymann. “In fact, we are also using the SK 2000 beltpack transmitters for our guitars and bass in combination with the SKM 2000/MMD 945 microphones – this was a solid choice for us from an audio point of view and also meant that we could benefit from the integrated antenna combiner of the EM 2050 and reduce the problems we had previously with RF interference.”

From here it was a logical step to move the drummer over to Sennheiser as well. “Personally, I always liked the evolution 900 Series for drums, so it was an easy choice to switch to Sennheiser for our drum kit. Once again it has been proven throughout countless shows that the high-quality sound and robust build of these mics make them a great choice for us. All in all, the entire Sennheiser package that we are using for Sabaton is working really well for our shows.”

However, Kroymann was quick to note that the sonic side of the deal is only part of the story. “In the touring industry, a lot can depend on the personal relationship with a company such as Sennheiser,” he noted. “It’s important to have the security and the peace of mind that comes from knowing that help is never far away should you need it. Sennheiser has given this peace of mind every step of the way. It’s a very good feeling to work with a company that is both willing and able to go the extra mile for us.”

Sabaton built their reputation by singing almost exclusively about historical wars and battles, a decision that was triggered after seeing the 1999 Academy Award-winning film, ‘Saving Private Ryan’. “For us it means a lot more to write about actual historical events than to make up stories,” says Pär Sundström. Topics are thoroughly researched to ensure the songs paint accurate and objective portraits of the historical event in question. Sabaton host their own three-day festival, Sabaton Open Air, in their home town of Falun during the summer, and have recently returned from their fourth annual Sabaton Cruise on the Baltic Sea, an event which sold out this year in less than a week!

The Sennheiser Group, with its headquarters in Wedemark near Hanover, Germany, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of microphones, headphones and wireless transmission systems. In 2012 the family company, which was founded in 1945, achieved a turnover of around 584 million euros. Sennheiser employs more than 2,300 people worldwide, and has manufacturing plants in Germany, Ireland and the USA. The company is represented worldwide by subsidiaries in France, Great Britain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Liechtenstein, Germany, Denmark (Nordic), Russia, Hong Kong, India, Singapore, Japan, China, Australia and New Zealand, Canada, Mexico and the USA, as well as by long-term trading partners in many other countries. Also part of the Sennheiser Group are Georg Neumann GmbH, Berlin (studio microphones and monitor loudspeakers), and the joint venture Sennheiser Communications A/S (headsets for PCs, offices and call centres).

You can find all the latest information on Sennheiser by visiting our website at www.sennheiserusa.com.

Photo credit:
Anna Dave Bertram

Moogfest teams up with Audiotool for a “Moogfest Audiotool Competition”

Audiotool launches a Moogfest Competition for producers,
Winner gets to play at Moogfest and runners up get released on a compilation

Los Angeles, CA, February 19, 2014: Starting today, Moogfest is inviting anyone to produce a track ­ using the free cloud­based audio workstation Audiotool ­ and submit it to the Moogfest Competition. The winner gets to play a set at Moogfest in Asheville, North Carolina, taking place from the 23rd to the 27th of April 2014. The winner will also, along with 7 runners up, have their tracks included on a limited edition release which will go out to the artists, VIPs and press who will be attending Moogfest.

Participants will have until the 25th of March to submit a track to the competition. A select panel including some of the Moogfest artists will then judge the tracks, with the the winner being announced on 1 April 2014.

Moogfest is the annual festival that celebrates the innovative spirit of founder Dr. Robert Moog, an American pioneer of electronic music and inventor of the Moog synthesizer. Emmy Parker, Brand Director at Moog Music Inc commented: “Moogfest represents the synthesis of technology, music and art. Audiotool’s innovative platform empowers emerging artists to create on their own terms. We are excited to offer Audiotool’s rich community of musicmakers an opportunity to be a part of Moogfest 2014.”

Since the 50s Moog Music has pioneered and developed devices that offer artists endless possibilities when it comes to creating sound. Audiotool, which started in 2008, brings together a range of retro and new school synthesizer emulations running in the browser, allowing collaboration and free access for anyone. The browser­based audio workstation is all about democratising the process of music creation and collaboration in the cloud. This partnership offers a unique opportunity to combine forces and to capitalize on the natural strengths and alignment of the two brands.

Audiotool inventor André Michelle said: “this partnership is huge for us and our users will be super excited about the chance of winning a set at Moogfest, for one just because of the incredible line­up. It’s also a unique opportunity for Audiotool users to have their music critiqued by some of the Moogfest artists.”

Submission phase: 19 February ­ 25 March
Winners announced: 1 April 2014

Grand Prize: Playing live set at Moogfest (flight, hotel and artist pass included)
1st-8th Place: Tracks will be on Moogfest 2014 compilation

More information on the contest and rules for entry can be found at: http://www.audiotool.com/contest/moogfest

About Audiotool:

Audiotool is a cloud­based audio workstation that is all about the process of music creation in an open, inspiring and collaborative way. Audiotool launched in 2010 and has since gained over 500k users. It started as a TR­909 emulation created by Andre Michelle in 2008, earning him the kudos for being one of the most innovative and capable Flash developers in the world. Andre Michelle was subsequently stalked by the idea that everyone should be able to make music through their browser. After 3 years of research and development this vision was fulfilled in the form of Audiotool. It has been awarded internationally for its design and rigorous development and has been praised by electronic music producers and the press: “You can really do everything that you would normally do in a real­world studio.” ­ Richie Hawtin

About Moogfest:

Since 2004, Moogfest has been a gathering for musicians that worked closely with Bob Moog and his instruments. In 2014, Moogfest is amplifying its vision and becoming a 5­Day event dedicated to the synthesis of technology, art and music. Moogfest honors the inventiveness of Bob Moog and the legacy of the analog synth with an experimental line up of daytime conference programming and landmark nightly performances. Moogfest takes place April 23­27th, 2014 in downtown Asheville, NC.

Some of this year’s line­up: Kraftwerk 3D: 3 Concerts, Pet Shop Boys, M.I.A, Flying Lotus, Dillon Francis, CHIC Feat. Nile Rodgers, Daedalus, YACHT.

About Moog Music:

Moog Music is the world’s leading producer of analog synthesizers. The company and its customers carry on the legacy of its founder, electronic musical instrument pioneer, Dr. Bob Moog. The company hosts Moogfest, a five­day festival celebrating the intersection of music and technology in honor of Moog’s innovative spirit. All of Moog’s instruments are hand built in its factory on the edge of downtown Asheville, NC.

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