Total Production

Light Initiative whips up LED magic on Blur

October 2015

Light Initiative's inspired IntelliFlex and NeonFlex LED systems are pumping beat-matched visuals through spectacular staging on Blur's current tour in a design by Dave Byars.

Byars commissioned Light Initiative to create individually controllable RGB LED light boxes from its in-house-invented IntelliFlex LED system.

The bespoke IntelliFlex and NeonFlex LED systems are incorporated into a trio of 2.2 metre-high mirrored structures called 'baguas', a Chinese good luck totem, and four giant ice creams.

The colourful set pieces are being used on Blur's current The Magic Whip album tour. They also appeared during the band's 'British Summer Time' headline performance in London's Hyde Park in June.

"The brightness of IntelliFlex is incredible," says Byars, who came up with the idea after meeting LI's Technical Director, Ben Vaughan. "I immediately knew it would be the ideal tool for our concept."

LI incorporated the IntelliFlex to the baguas in-house, internally mapping it on its 8LS processor.

"Dave's concept for the baguas would usually require 39 RGB controllers per bagua, plus a plethora of cabling," Vaughan explains. "We offered an alternative with IntelliFlex. This meant that instead of needing more than a hundred cables, we could reduce it to just eight per set piece. In the three baguas, we replaced over 100 controllers with just three."   

With LI's control system, Byars made the baguas come alive, powering striking beat-perfect visuals through the structures in time with each song.

"Being able to control each panel within the bagua mirror was absolutely brilliant," says Byars.

For the British Summer Time show, Light Initiative outlined the ice cream set pieces and accompanying ice cream van, which frontman Damon Albarn purchased especially for the BST gig, with NeonFlex.

"The Intelliflex and NeonFlex products added the ultimate visual impact to the set pieces," says Byars. "People had never seen anything like it, and absolutely loved it."

Blur is set to tour South America this autumn, before a performance at Madison Square Garden in New York City.


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