i-Pix LED fixtures continue their run on the high profile tours of 2009, with lighting designer Paul Normandale specifying both BB4 LED wash lights and the original i-Pix Satellite 'brick' LED light-sources as part of his Depeche Mode "Sounds of the Universe" design.
Normandale worked closely with the band's long time creative director Anton Corbijn on developing appropriate lighting and a clean look and feel for the show to compliment Corbijn's set and stage concept. The show is energetically and intelligently constructed with a potent, fluid sense of visual harmony running between lighting and video elements.
In keeping with the desire to keep the stage space looking sparse and uncluttered, a substantial part of the lighting rig is concealed behind a MiTrix video wall at the back - including the 24 BB4s. These, together with 24 MAC 2K Wash moving lights are mounted on custom built frames, presenting a powerful barrage of lights that can blast through the semi-transparent MiTrix screens at appropriate moments.
Normandale comments on the "real power" of the BB4s in this context, adding that they are the "Only" LEDs he's found that actually show and illuminate the audience in colour", even when cutting through the exceptionally bright MiTrix surface.
When Normandale and touring lighting director Graham Feast programmed the show, they did so with the BB4's switched to their most comprehensive mode - enabling each individual pixel to be controlled and programmed as a separate lightsource. This has allowed them to create some beautifully intricate and random chases and movements - very much part of the Normandale oeuvre.
Graham Feast further comments on the reliability of both BB4s and Satellites on the road - a prerequisite that has always been central to the i-Pix engineering and design philosophy and integral to all products.
The Satellites - 12 in total - are positioned around the risers illuminating each band member from close up. They were chosen for being small and discreet - in keeping with the clean stage look - and their wide colour range which includes high quality 'real' pastels and other more unusual hues normally unobtainable with an LED fixture.
Normandale is also using i-Pix BB4s on Coldplay's current world tour. Blackburn-based rental company Lite Alternative is lighting equipment suppliers for the European legs of the Depeche Mode tour, with the US legs being serviced by Chicago-based Upstaging.