Coachella Visuals 2010

Category: Blog

Just writing to do some brief coverage of the production at Coachella this year, the most extensive and impressive presentation of video mixing and graphics mashing I’ve seen to date.

Mad props to VJ Tek and VJ Culture- they rocked it hard all weekend, with the assistance of VJ Fader, Visualante and myself.
The Sahara Tent was blowin up with everything from Bassnectar to Yo Gabba Gabba, including Rusko, Glitch Mob, DeadMau5, Pretty Lights, Z-trip and a special performance with Daft Punk and Justice trying to collectively mix.

I was pretty occupied by some form of work the whole weekend- but fortunately the occupation of working with VJ’s is incredibly entertaining. I’d find myself jumping on/off stage mounting fisheye security cam’s to the DJ booths, operating another camera, and running around taking care of other problems that arose. Sometimes the load was lightened by the occasional guest VJ; and @ other times there’d be an artist solely dedicated to a band/DJ.

Hardware setup included
-3 laptops
-1 DVJ
-2 V8’s
-1 Edirol PR80
-1 PTZ Camera
-3 DV cameras
-8×8 matrix switcher
-1 Kaptivator

Still don’t know exactly what was getting routed where, but I can tell you this much- that was the most incredible table of electronic gadgetry I’ve had the opportunity to see. There were plenty more little trinkets, cables, and converters that I’m sure played crucial roles- but I’m just going to go straight to some clips>

Friday night’s highlight:

I haven’t been able to find good footage of it anywhere, but at times DeadMau5’s head rotated when he was scratching on a track, concentric faces infinitely expanded out from each other, and eventually the head, while lit up with red and white LEDs started spiraling around his entire helmet. Supposedly there’s a camera outside of his enormous mouse helmet allows him to see what’s going on outside of the helmet. I’ve come to understand the helmet and cubic DJ booth were both made by the same guys who designed Daft Punk’s pyramid years ago. Incredible to see all of this live, but I think that the cube idea still has some room for improvement in the way that the lights/video are currently designed for it.

Bassnectar showed with his own VJ, who was very impressive. Not even a month after the technology was out, he had already managed to put together a set, driven so expressively via ipad. I’m pretty confident he was running TouchOsc with VDMX, or maybe it was just a slick max patch but either way- a sweet operation.

The weekend in the Sahara tent closed out with Plastikman (Richie Hawtin) surrounded by an enormous cylinder of LED’s. There was a piece of software running from the VJ booth, somehow receiving signals from an IR camera mounted near the DJ, and an occasional nudge in the right direction by a nonchalant VJ.

I was never able to muster the energy to make it to the Gorillaz (playing @ the same time as Plastikman), yet I managed to cap my weekend off with Sly Stone and a funky-ass party.

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