MADRID – Music is indeed the universal language. Flogging Molly offers vivid proof of this truism. Formed in Los Angeles, the seven-piece American band got their start playing at Molly Malone’s, a local club from which they ultimately derived their name. Their unique mash-up of Irish, hard rock and punk music attracted an ever-larger following. Now, six studio albums and three Billboard Top 20 hits later, this American band is kicking off 2019 by bringing its Celtic-inspired sound to Europe in an 11-country Life Is Good tour that runs through mid-February.
Providing powerful visual support for the mostly sold-out shows is an intense colorful lightshow designed by Peter Therrien of JDI Productions that’s anchored by a collection of CHAUVET Professional fixtures. “We’re doing great in Europe,” said Therrien. “There are plans to come back in the summer for festivals.”
As a band, Flogging Molly thrives on crowd connections, enlivening every setlist with boisterous singalongs like “Drunken Lullabies” and “Salty Dog.” The tour’s lighting design contributes to this mood with plenty of audience lighting and intense colors.
“For me, the biggest thing about this show was our bright, vivid colors,” said Therrien. “They set the right atmosphere, especially when we combine them with a lot of gobos and good time looks. Cody James (also of JDI Productions) provided me with a lot of input into making the colors in this design pop.”
The key to providing those colorful looks are the eight Rogue R1 FX-B and 10 Nexus Aq 5×5 fixtures positioned in a U-shape along the back and side perimeters of stage. “From the way we arranged the Rogue and Nexus fixtures, we’re able to hit the stage with brilliant colors from every direction,” said Therrien. “The Nexus gives us those sharp beams of colorful light, and the FX-B is a real game changer. Not only does it add a lot of color, but its individual heads also give me sneaky little beams all over the place, which creates some nice looks.”
Therrien, who is traveling with the band on its European tour, is positioning his Nexus and Rogue units between the eight Legend 230SR Beam fixtures that he is using for aerial effects and backlighting. “Starting downstage right and working upstage on the floor, I have a Nexus, followed by an FX-B, followed by a Nexus, followed by an FX-B,” he said. “I spread the Nexus panels. On the floor behind the risers are 4 more FX-Bs. Then that’s mirrored stage left.”
Also contributing to the colorful looks on stage is the Ovation B-2805FC. Positioned on the drum riser, this RGBA-Lime batten-style fixture is used to reflect colorful light off the drums, adding a warm glow to the party atmosphere endemic to a Flogging Molly show.
“The Ovation has filled a void in our design,” said Therrien. “Being on the drum riser, it totally wipes out any dark spots that we had on midstage and replaces them with some wonderful colors.”
Beautiful colors accompanying colorful music has proven to be a winning formula for Flogging Molly in Europe, as this Celtic crew from LA has been drawing big crowds from Paris to Warsaw. Fans are loving the show, which pleases Therrien, but even more exciting is the reaction he’s getting from his client.
“The band has really taken notice,” he said. “They’re very happy with our work, which means a great deal to us.”