18-Dec-2001 (Tue)

Well the Pigface show was not only a good show, and a successful event for us, but it was one of the best shows I've seen in years. I had so much fun! And that's quite a feat, given how nervous I was about it, and how much I was looking for things going wrong. Pigface not only put on an ass-kicking performance, they were also all great live musicians, something I don't see enough of these days. I've seen them four or five times, and this was far and away the best I've seen them.

Alexis did a fantastic job putting this show together, and again I have to thank the Red Melon folks for graciously agreeing to give up one of their saturdays so we could do this show instead!

And, we did not hemorrhage money on this event, like we thought we might! It's really hard to not lose money on live shows, since there is so much more overhead than for a DJ event, so the fact that we just about broke even is really good news.

The VNV Nation show on thursday was also a lot of fun; both VNV Nation and Icon of Coil are pretty good at working the crowd: they manage to make it feel like a concert instead of a DJ event, despite the fact that, aside from the singing and some of the drumming/keyboards, the majority of the music was pre-recorded. That show sold out! For a while, I was sitting on the stairs behind the stage, and that was the first time I had heard what it sounds like in the new DNA when a packed house is cheering between songs. That was great. I want to hear more of that. Michael from the pizza place next door said, "I was expecting every weekend to be like this." Man, I wish it was.

The light show VNV brought was very impressive: they brought basically the same set of lights that we already own, except they set them all up on the stage. There was actually some concern about whether they were going to be able to fit their light rig on our stage at all, but they made it work, and it looked great. They had these ominous truss towers with Studio Spots on top: and it was the same kind of truss that we have above the stage, so it all fit in really nicely. You can see that contraption in some of the pictures.

I'm not totally happy with how the webcasts sounded for these shows; the audio in the archives doesn't sound nearly as good as it did in the room. I'm not sure if this is just a compression issue, or if we will need to put an EQ on the webcast to tune it to sound more like the room as well.

Hallucinogen on friday was also a good show, and also sold out. They brought in this giant painted mask that they hung above the stage: it looked like just the multi-eyed blue face on the flyer. This thing must have been 15' tall! It's too bad none of the video cameras could see it... Very impressive. But unfortunately, the thing that's going to stick with me longest about that show is the smell. I enjoyed the music a lot, but the crowd was definitely of the "bathing optional" mindset. I don't mean the kind of B.O. you get from working out, or dancing a lot: I mean the kind you get from living under a truck for six months. We're talking weapons-grade B.O. here.

There has been the usual set of computer disasters in the last few weeks; we're still shaking out the bugs in the new webcasting setup. We decided to put an analog audio card in the RealVideo encoder machine instead of a digital card, since RealProducer seemed to be getting confused by the digital card at random times (and when it gets confused, it doesn't actually crash, so my scripts can restart it: it just starts happily broadcasting silence.) But that's not working too well either.

We finally had one of the kiosk keyboards fail unrepairably; that's the first time, which is somewhat surprising. There were finally one too many sticky drinks spilled into it. We've had to replace some keys on the keyboards so far, but never a whole keyboard until now. Also, someone punched out one of the kiosks: they smashed the plexiglass in front of the screen. Nobody saw this happen, of course; I hope it hurt like hell. This is me being really glad that I decided to put plexi in front of the screens instead of leaving the monitors exposed. Though at the time, I was more worried about people writing on them and gumming them up with stickers than with people trying to put their (hopefully tattered) fists through them...

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