Sound engineer Sergio Maschetzko, FOH Black Country New Road band


Sergio Maschetzko, FOH audio engineer for Black Country New Road band uses 20 condenser mics, open at the same time. He says ” no issue, zero. Just really good.” Listen to Sergio’s experience of moving from internal pickups and other mics to the pristine quality of DPAs.


I’m Sergio, I’m a live sound engineer. For first time, I’m producer. At the moment, I am the live sound engineer for Black Country New Road. I knew the manager and I said to the manager, if you any time need a hand to do the sound for them let me know. I don’t want to get paid; I just want to work with them. They’re amazing. And they got back to me, and we start working together since. Fortunately, they pay me now, so that’s great.

The band is amazing. It’s really challenging, it’s seven pieces. So, we’ve got drums, bass, two guitars, saxophone, flute, violin, piano. The balance is super important and the clarity because you need to hear every instrument. Everything, every instrument has a part in the composition of the song. It’s not about mask a song, we put the guitars up and just keeping the violin or the saxophone buried in the mix, or the piano. Everything, they have to be integrated, everything has to interact between the instruments as a unit. We did the Mercury Prize.

It was absolutely incredible as well. It’s really great. And we used DPA for the biggest show that we’ve had so far; that was in the Electric Ballroom that is 1300 cap. Again, I used all my DPAs. Really happy with them. It was that good that the technical manager of the venue, he was so impressed about my 2011 – a small mic put in the bass drum. He said that was the best sound that they hear in the venue. And everything was just perfection. And again, another 20 mics, condenser mics, open at the same time, no issue, zero. Just pretty good. So the studio, the good part about it was when I get through the first few days of tracking, I was changing, trying different scenes and end up with the 2011s. And this just sounds beautiful. And the purest sound I have in snare. It’s one, only one mic in the snare no bottom snare, not three snare mics, just one. And that was just great, just don’t need anything else.

So our violinist, Georgia, she has an internal pickup, and she says “my pickup sounds amazing”. I said that sounds (expletive). So, we put a DPA inside, so we did A/B. And she was like wow, I thought that my pickup was fine so when we put the clip mic, it was just insane. Same with the saxophone and since with the piano. And we have the two clip mics, DPA mag, I love the magnet part that you can put in there, in the frame. So, I put in the hammers and we when we did A/B to compare the sounds, most of the sounds are coming from (the piano sound) is from the DPAs. And we have this amazing woman called May. She’s a concert pianist so she knows exactly the sound that she wants. And we, most of the time, end up using DPA’s a lot more because she preferred that sound. And the same with the saxophone. The saxophonist, he loves it. He never liked the idea to play with a clip mic, and now since we got a DPA, it’s the only thing that he’s using at the moment.

So, I think that the main thing is the performance, the musicians they saw the quality and they love it. So, another interesting thing about the musicians with the mics is Isaac, the singer. He’s got a really particular voice. It’s not a typical silky voice. I like that. And for me, it’s always really difficult to find – I’ve been trying a lot of different mics for him – until we got the DPA, the 2028. And I see, I was super happy with it. The 2028 is an amazing mic and it works perfectly for his kind, for his voice register. And he notices as well in monitors. Usually, we got issues with monitors for feedback or sounds honky. And we’ve been using 2028 and it’s been amazing. It just works. It’s clear and it’s loud so it’s exactly what I need. And exactly what he needs as well.

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