A combination of geometrically and historically inspired projections make for a striking backdrop for Rodrigo y Gabriela’s latest tour, in support of new album ‘9 Dead Alive’. The duo’s Multimedia Designer, Krisjanis Berzins operates the show using Ai Version 8 – Bondi, running from a Software Licence Key.
The Mexican acoustic guitar duo returned to tour the UK this winter, having taken to the iconic Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury in the summer. Using two screen fixtures, their show employs Ai to run 4-6 layers per fixture, made up of 1-2 footage layers plus 4 live camera layers which can be source switched to use up to 8 cameras at a time.
Berzins’ design took inspiration from the new album, for which each song is dedicated to someone with significant legacy in human history. “We had built animations for these as well as some extra geometry based content for the older tracks,” he explains.
Content was created by a freelance team of animators/modellers and other creative heads, mostly Dublin based, directed by Berzins. He notes that “each track is chopped up in smaller sections and they are all carefully built in separate sections overlying each other with extended out-handles, to be triggered live.”
The show is particularly suited to live triggering due to the duo’s dynamic style, with ever-changing tempo. Further to this, the band have recently abandoned the notion of a set-list, with audience requests making up a part of the set, making timecoding impossible.
“When we started looking into the next step in projection for the tour it was obvious our previous system would not be up to the task and we needed something more powerful,” says Berzins. Specifically we needed a system that would be fundamentally a 3D engine.
“After playing around with Ai, it quickly became clear that it was the closest to what we were after. Ai also turned out to be very cost effective and the best option for future-proofing the tour, with a very strong support team behind it too.”
The tour recently switched to Version 8, with Berzins noticing some massive improvements in the latest version of the Ai software. “The speed bumps have been ironed out, and it feels more stable. The usability improvements are certainly a big step forward. The speed of the mapping process is much quicker now, crucial for a touring 3D mapped show.”
“I think Ai worked like a charm. I am excited about the future of Ai and having some time off touring to play with the Salvation framework while experimenting with some new concepts and ideas.
“There is nothing else in the media server market that allows the level of tinkering with generative visuals and interactivity that can be achieved with Ai's Salvation. And this is exactly where, among other things, I will be investing a lot of my personal time in the near future.”