Featured KRK User Snow Patrol

Johnny McDaid

These days, U.K musical artists dominate the contemporary pop music scene, with such superstars as Adele, Coldplay, Radiohead and others releasing albums to critical and commercial acclaim. Continuing in this vein is the Anglo-Irish group Snow Patrol, which is achieving similar success in the U.K. and across the globe. With the release of its latest album, Fallen Empires, interest in the band is skyrocketing.

The group, which originally hails from Ireland but is now based in Scotland, formed its first lineup in 1994. Since then, it's generated such hits as the Grammy-nominated "Chasing Cars" as well as "Crack the Shutters" and "Just Say Yes." In 2006, the groupís Eyes Open became the biggest-selling album in the U.K. Its 2005 album, Final Straw, won the prestigious Ivor Novello award for best album of the year. Snow Patrolís cover of John Lennonís "Isolation" appeared on the 2007 John Lennon tribute album Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur. Meanwhile, the groupís "Signal Fire" appeared on the soundtrack of Spider-Man 3. The current lineup of the group includes Gary Lightbody, Nathan Connolly, Paul Wilson, Jonny Quinn, Tom Simpson and Johnny McDaid.

When not in the studio, Snow Patrol is constantly on tour, both as a headliner and with the groups such as U2 and Coldplay. For its latest tour, the group sought to make the songs feel as dynamic and organic on stage as possible. This requires that much of the groupís experimentation and creative processes occur on the road. It is no surprise, then, that Wilson, Simpson and McDaid all use KRK monitors and the ERGO room correction system while working on projects on tour. Contributing to the group's success is the assistance of producer Jacknife Lee, who also uses KRK monitors.

Snow Patrolís Johnny McDaid finds KRK to be a real asset when working while touring. "What we really need is for the room to sound okay so we can reference things," he says. "If youíre in a different room every day, it takes time for your ears to adjust to that sound. With KRK monitors, itís a 10-minute setup and then the room sounds like the room before. Then you have a kind of barometer to reference it against, which is very important on the road."

McDaid also uses the KRK ROKIT 6 and VXT 6 monitors in his home studio. "They donít make me feel remotely tired," he says. "Being awake for 20 hours at a time does, but the KRK monitors donít."

To obtain consistent sound on the road, McDaid also uses KRKís ERGO system. "What we want to hear is the purest version of whatís coming off the tape into our ears, to the mechanism that receives it," McDaid says. "When I used the ERGO for the first time, I knew I was going to spend real time on it in the studio. I spent an hour doing all sorts of different spots and checks. What it seems to do is cancel out the bad stuff and make more of the good stuff."

McDaid also liked the way KRKís 10s subwoofers interact with the ERGO system. ďThe 10s subwoofer is really good with the ERGO because itís not overdone," he says. "Thereís nothing worse than an overcooked sub in your studio. If the sub is taken out, then everything starts to sound thin and small. Also, itís really nicely balanced, and I love the crossover ability with it as well. Itís really great."

Whether on the road or at home in Scotland, other members of Snow Patrol use KRK monitors. Tom Simpson uses ROKIT 8s at his home in Scotland. "Tom likes to have friends over and play D.J. He wanted a setup in his house that would feel kind of like a club," McDaid says. ďHe wanted monitors that would allow him the depth and bass that you would get off a club system in his house and KRK gave him just that."

KRK monitors and ERGO allow McDaid to pursue his musical passion. "Writing is kind of life-imperative for me," he says. "I have to write. I have to make music all the time. When I joined Snow Patrol I had to make sure that I could still keep creating music. The beautiful thing about technology today is it gives you the ability to set up in a room, whether a dressing room, a hotel room or anywhere else, and continue to make music. The technology is so fantastic today that we can bring a studio on the road with us."

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