Santiano, a quintet from Germany, creates a captivating fusion of sea shanties, European folk, schlager, and modern pop music with a distinctively rustic feel. In 2023, the band celebrates their 10th anniversary with the release of a new album Die Sehnsucht ist mein Steuermann – Das Beste aus 10 Jahren (The Best of 10 Years) and embarked on an extensive anniversary tour. The band’s monitor engineer, Ravi Rai, has opted for KLANG’s immersive in-ear monitor mixing solution, for which he is using a DMI-KLANG card-equipped DiGiCo Quantum 338 digital mixing console provided by rental company GrandPA Beschallungs & Lichttechnik.
As an experienced sound and monitor engineer of nearly 30 years, Ravi has worked with Santiano for 11 years and recalls the challenges faced when transitioning the band from wedges to an in-ear monitoring system.
“Being a mature band, Santiano are accustomed to old-school rock ‘n’ roll stages with wedges everywhere, and where they would typically go to the guitar guy to hear what he is playing,” says Ravi. “This is completely gone now. By using KLANG, the band has more freedom, and everyone is happy with this change. During rehearsals, I give them control of the system via the KLANG:kontroller, allowing all band members to play around with it on their own. On the road, I simply add it in. On one occasion, the guitar player was using KLANG during the rehearsal and was making changes in the system while I was simultaneously fine-tuning my own settings, resulting in a seamless and effortless process for everyone involved.”
Previously a user of the KLANG:fabrik, Ravi has since become a big fan of the DMI-KLANG immersive in-ear monitoring system. With its unrivalled mixing capability, it has become the perfect companion for his work.
“The native integration of the DMI-KLANG with the Quantum 338 allows me to perform all functions within the desk, eliminating the need for outboard, external cabling or additional hardware, which is a significant advantage for him,” Ravi adds. “I just take my DMI card and use it whenever I need it. It’s a straightforward and efficient system that simplifies my work.”
After using the Quantum 338 for the past 18 months, Ravi is thoroughly pleased with its performance. He remarks, “When the Quantum 338 was released during the pandemic, I immediately knew that I needed it! It’s a compact and user-friendly console that comes equipped with DMI card slots, and it runs seamlessly.”
From the entire spectrum of features the Quantum 338 offers, Ravi is particularly fond of the multi-function control knobs, which he has grown accustomed to as a monitor engineer. He has also come to rely heavily on the console’s Snapshot functionality. “The Quantum 338 makes it easy for me to adjust settings on the fly while the show is running. I like the Macro setups, which allow me to perform multiple actions at once. Nodal processing is also a significant advancement for me as a monitor sound engineer,” he says.
For many musicians, having KLANG during rehearsal is highly beneficial as it reduces sonic conflicts and provides clarity and control over volume levels, helping them to recognize the nuances of dynamics better and makes it easier to hear the difference in a wide dynamic range.
On that note, Ravi has an anecdote to share about working with the famous German rapper Kontra K.
“I used my DMI-KLANG card equipped Quantum 338 during rehearsal, but I didn’t let anyone know. After we started playing, Kontra K said how awesome it sounded after just one song! I kept it a secret until three days later when I finally told them I was using KLANG. They could all hear the difference, but didn’t know why. And they were blown away by how fast it was to set up,” he shares.
While his positive experiences with KLANG make it a must-have tool for his productions, Ravi admits that he still finds some occasional hesitancy among artists and bands to incorporate the technology, often due to the limited rehearsal time. However, his experience proves that KLANG can be incorporated easily and quickly – essentially saving rather than costing time.
“The KLANG system noticeably improves sound quality, allowing for greater precision and control that leads to more dynamic performances,” he concludes. “As someone who has experienced the advantages first-hand, I strongly encourage everyone to give it a try, as the benefits are evident right from the first song.”