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Feature: Teaming up

Feature: Teaming up
IES' Kekul Sheth

Feature: Teaming up

Several clubs to open in Mumbai have been installed with Martin Audio sound systems. Caroline Moss visits the new arrivals on the city’s party scene

Ask anyone who’s attended one of its soirées during the annual PALM India show, and it would appear that Mumbai-based sound and lighting distributor, Integrated Entertainment Solutions (IES), knows a thing or two about partying. So it stands to reason that when the Ramee luxury hotel group teamed up with Richboyz Entertainment event management to create a new venue, it was to IES they turned to provide the latest in club technology.

Luna Nudo
Luna Nudo

One of the first results of the tie-up is Bombay Adda in Khar. The distributor had been contacted by Richboyz, whose team had visited a previous Martin installation at a Kamla Mills venue that they admired. ‘Adda means “hangout” in Hindi, and Richboyz wanted us to create a lounge-type environment,’ explains IES’ co-owner, Kekul Sheth. ‘However, knowing what kind of nights they specialise in, we designed something suitable for a nightclub setting too.’

The venue occupies two new floors that have been constructed on top of an existing building. ‘When we came on board it was a shell; just the four walls,’ continues Sheth. ‘This was good for us and the installation team as we were in plenty of time to run the wiring where it needed to go, before the interior design was started.’

The eighth floor – the lower of Bombay Adda’s two levels – has duly been installed to pack a punch with a main system of four Blackline X15 2-way speakers with a CSX-Live 218 dual 18-inch subwoofer. Originally, two of the latter were installed, but were found to create too much reverb down through the building, not to mention the recording studio below. The remaining sub, which has proved to be more than enough for the space, has been installed next to a boxing ring where, occasionally, live bands are staged. DJ nights are more common at Bombay Adda, however, and the venue is open seven days a week, attracting a crowd of Mumbai partygoers each night.

The main room at Bombay Adda
The main room at Bombay Adda

Situated above the club area, the ninth floor features an open kitchen and roof terrace. Open from lunchtime until late into the night, this space has a small system of six Martin ultra-compact CDD6 speakers and a CXS112 compact subwoofer, while the outdoor terrace has been installed with CDD5-WR weatherised 5-inch speakers. ‘We’ve used compact speakers from the CDD range on the ninth level specifically for the good coverage it provides and, as there is a weatherised version, we could use it outside,’ says Sheth. And if proof of its durability was required, the CDD5-WR system has sailed through India’s epic monsoon season.

The entire sound system at Bombay Adda is powered by amps from Powersoft’s M and K Series, and zoning is handled via a Martin Audio DX0.5 loudspeaker management system. This gives flexibility, allowing the same musical content to be played in the restaurant and the club, or for the systems to run independently of each other. ‘It was very important to the owners that they could run the restaurant and terrace as a separate system,’ says Sheth.

With its industrial, relaxed interior design and vintage photographs, Bombay Adda is an example of how the city’s heritage can be used to great effect. Just across town in Lower Parel, in one of the city’s tallest skyscrapers overlooking the Arabian Sea, is a very different venue: Luna Nudo. Occupying the 37th level of the St Regis hotel, Luna Nudo exemplifies international five-star glamour. But here too, Martin Audio sound systems have been selected to keep customers coming back night after night. IES has also installed the bar/club area with lighting including Robe ParFect 100 and CycFX 4 models controlled by an Avolites Titan One DMX USB dongle, and LED modules for peripheral ambience lighting. These run off a Madrix Nebula LED pixel tape driver and change colour within a warm palette to complement the theme of the décor.

Martin Audio CDD5-WRs cover the terrace at Bombay Adda
Martin Audio CDD5-WRs cover the terrace at Bombay Adda

This project was somewhat more challenging than the installation at Bombay Adda as the team was working in a space that was already constructed. Luna Nudo occupies an area that was previously an open-plan lift lobby. Walls were constructed to create the new club and the Luna Gusta fine dining restaurant that sits above it on a mezzanine level.

‘Running the wiring here was difficult because the place was already built, and the control room is located some distance from the actual club,’ explains Sheth. ‘Cabling had to be chased right throughout the ceiling to get it where we needed it to be.’

Live music is staged in the dancefloor area of Luna Nudo each evening until 11pm, when DJs take over until the early hours. Here, the system has been designed to give more control over directivity, with two XD15 and XD12 high-output speakers providing the main system, together with a CSX-Live 218 sub, two DD6 differential dispersion speakers and two O-Line modular micro line array models. ‘It needed to be loud, but one of the issues we faced was having a large floor-to-ceiling window that runs along one side of the space,’ he continues. ‘So we’ve used a combination of XD and O-Line speakers, as well as providing them with differential directivity speakers that help control the sound and get it where it needs to go.’ Above in Luna Gusta, eight CDD8s provide background and ambient music, while two CDD5s cover the VIP seating area of the restaurant. Again, the systems are driven by Powersoft M and K Series amplification, and system control is via two Martin Audio DX1.5 loudspeaker management systems.

Located north of the city in Thane, the Warehouse Lounge is a 2,750m2 venue in an industrial compound that is being transformed into a new entertainment hub. Zoned into three distinct areas, the Warehouse Lounge boasts a ground-floor club and a VIP section on a mezzanine level above, which extends into an alfresco dining terrace with an enclosed private party room. Resident DJ Teeju spins the tunes most evenings and the venue also hosts a number of themed events such as Bhuttiya (Halloween), Oktoberfest and Salsa nights.

LED tubes are suspended from the ceiling at the Warehouse Lounge
LED tubes are suspended from the ceiling at the Warehouse Lounge

Two Martin Audio CDD15 high-output coaxial speakers provide the main dancefloor system, together with a pair of CSX118 compact subwoofers. Two CDD12s and two Blackline X118s take care of a restaurant area on the ground floor, with 14 CDD6s for the mezzanine level. Again, weatherised versions have been provided, this time for the outdoor restaurant, where six CDD5-WRs have been installed.

System control is provided by two Martin Audio DX0.5 loudspeaker management systems, and the entire system is run off Powersoft Quattrocanali, Ottocanali and K Series amplification.

The lighting at the Warehouse Lounge has been designed to create maximum visual impact upon entering the club. Central to this, IES has designed and supplied a central lighting system consisting of 625 LED pixel tubes suspended from the slanted ceiling above the dancefloor, which have been programmed using Madrix v5 lighting control software and controlled via a Madrix Nebula LED pixel tape driver.

The LED tubes are complemented by moving heads, a haze machine and a laser that extends from the bar all the way through to the entrance. Throughout the premises, a great deal of LED pixel tape and architectural LEDs have been used, with DMX programming taken care of by an Avolites Titan Mobile light control system, with all the different elements combining to provide a visual treat.

In devising and providing carefully tailored entertainment technology systems for a diverse selection of venues, IES is playing a part in keeping Mumbai’s nightlife scene fresh and interesting.

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