HMV Next Big Thing Concert Series Recorded with the Help of CATO Music and Avid

The HMV Next Big Thing concert series gave music fans across the United Kingdom the opportunity to see almost 200 up-and-coming bands at nine venues over a 12-day period, including DJ Fresh, Labrinth, Modestep, Fatoumata Diawara, The Boxettes, fiN, and YouTube sensation Conor Maynard. For those who missed or want to relive the shows, London-based touring company CATO Music produced and recorded performances using three Avid VENUE SC48 consoles and Pro Tools 10. Fifteen of the best performances are now available for download at hmv.com.

Daniel Humphreys of CATO Music, who was the tour’s production manager, says that dedicating the SC48 consoles to recording the shows made the most sense. “To record a festival that was on such a fast turnaround schedule, we needed a workflow that was trusted, seamless, and fast,” he says. “Using the SC48 and Pro Tools 10 ensured that a quality recording was captured.”

Jim King, head of live recording at CATO, adds: “The ability to use Snapshots and the way the console named the audio tracks via VENUE Ethernet was invaluable. We sound checked, fired up Pro Tools, and the channel list was imported straight away. Then all we had to do was arm the tracks and press record. It was the perfect tool for the job, as space and time were limited.”

Moreover, SC48 and Pro Tools 10 provided pristine audio fidelity, as King explains. “The sheer quality of the mic pres were the absolute reason we chose to use the SC48 and Pro Tools 10 for this project. We were mixing new bands, and that big, warm, tight sound offered by this console was exactly what was needed. Also, Pro Tools is a trusted name for recording. That was important for bands’ management to see and showed we meant business.”

Avid live sound sales manager Mick Brophy points out, “Producing live recordings is exactly what the integration between VENUE SC48 and Pro Tools 10 was designed to do. Doing it for such a great festival as The HMV Next Big Thing is an honor for Avid.”

Humphreys agrees, concluding, “It’s been a sell-out festival and a huge success for HMV. I know it sounds like a cliché, but we really couldn’t have done it without Avid.”