AWOLNATION, formed by lead singer Aaron Bruno, first became popular in 2011 with the release of their debut album, Megalithic Symphony. The album featured hit single, Sail which peaked at #17 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart and sold over 5,500,000 copies in the US. LMG Touring is on the road providing lighting and technical support.
The inspiration behind the tour was to create an authentic show that incorporates the band’s musical sound. “I asked Aaron where he got his inspiration for their sound. He described to me early mornings on the water as a surfer and the mystery of the ocean. I took the nautical theme and rolled with it,” states Mitchell Schellenger, AWOLNATION’s Lighting and Production Designer. “The lighting design itself specifically is a play off the idea of the ocean’s unknown. I wanted to create harsh contrast between the softer songs and the heavy hitters, all while maintaining that water like feel,” states Schellenger.
To achieve an energetic look, LMG Touring provided a variety of lighting fixtures including ROBE Cycfx, Pointe, Patt 2013, MMX wash beam, Clay Paky Sharpy Wash, Martin Mac Aura, and Elation Opti Quad Pars. “It was very important that I gave the band a very dynamic light show, so I immediately knew I wanted to use a hybrid fixture,” states Schellenger. “The ROBE Pointe was the perfect fixture for this because of its compact size and multiple capabilities.”
The primary fixture used on the AWOLNATION tour was LMG’s new ROBE Patt 2013, which adds a unique blend of retro and modern elements to enhance the design. “I used the ROBE Patt 2013s to create almost “porthole” like windows. The warmth of these lights cutting through some of the darker looks really had a great impact,” explains Schellenger.
When choosing equipment for the tour, LMG’s lighting fixtures provide a flexible solution for large and small venues and spaces without affecting the design. “This particular topic was a big one for this tour. The band was playing a very vast range of spaces and I wanted to give them something that looked powerful in bigger sheds, but was also practical in smaller theaters,” Schellenger explains. “I approached this by electing to use towers at staggered heights. This would allow the set to expand and contract depending on the stage width, as well as get a higher trim in the big rooms. I didn’t want any lights to not get used in smaller venues, so I made sure the structure would adapt.”
The GrandMA2 lighting console was chosen for the limitless opportunities it provides on tour. “I have been an MA2 guy for a while, and I honestly don’t feel any other console measures up. It’s the first piece I specify. It’s my instrument in a sense,” states Schellenger. “I don’t feel limited by the console and I quickly get the results I want from it. The syntax is so natural.”
“LMG was awesome during this process. We didn’t have a lot of time to put this show together, so as soon as I called LMG, we were rolling,” reflects Schellenger. “They really understand what I’m trying to do artistically, while still working within the budget we’ve set forth. LMG also has such a spectrum of equipment, I don’t feel like I need to design within the limitations of gear availability.”
“Mitchell and the Awolnation team created a great looking show with a lot of impact and our LMG Nashville team did a fantastic job supporting the tour on a tight timeline,” recaps, LMG’s Director of Touring, Craig Mitchell.