Having recently completed a rigorous touring schedule with a string of successful performances on Warped 2014 and releasing its third full-length studio LP entitled Ashes to Ashes this summer, deathcore metal artist Chelsea Grin is taking a well deserved break before embarking on yet another 24-date U.S tour this October, alongside The Black Dahlia Murder and Suicide Silence.
As one of the ‘heavier’ metal bands to have performed on the Warped Tour, Chelsea Grin depends on Sennheiser microphones and wireless equipment for unmatched quality and intelligibility while on otur.
Having toured relentlessly since forming in 2007, it didn’t take long before the band realized the importance of choosing the right equipment on the road — and the positive effect this can have on an overall touring experience.
One of the turning points occurred several years ago when guitarists Jaek Harmond and Dan Jones purchased a set of Sennheiser ew 172 G3 wireless units for their guitar rigs, which are both still in use today.
“I always knew that Sennheiser was all about quality, and at the end of the day, that is the most important thing for us,” says Harmond.
Since then, Chelsea Grin’s following has vastly expanded (the band’s Facebook page boasts well over one million likes) and its equipment arsenal has become far more sophisticated. Recently, the band upgraded its entire wireless infrastructure to Sennheiser’s G3 series, and the band also acquired new vocal and instrument microphones, ensuring every single one was a Sennheiser.
Harmond recalls when the band made the decision to transition its lead vocal microphone, at the recommendation of Chelsea Grin Tour Manager / Front of House engineer Gino Scarim and Sennheiser Artist Relations Manager Tim Moore: “At first, our lead singer Alex [Koehler] was a little hesitant to switch because he was so used to the competitors wired microphone. But after we A/B’d it against the Sennheiser MD 431-ii, it was no contest. The Sennheiser won every time and just sounded better,” he says.
Along with the MD431-ii, a custom red and white finished ew 500-935 G3 is the choice when a wireless option is needed.
On drums, Chelsea Grin uses Sennheiser’s evolution series, with an e902 on the kick drum, e904s’s on toms, an e945 on the snare and a pair of e614s as overheads. For each of its guitars, which are running direct, the group depends on Sennheiser ew 572 G3 wireless instrument transmitters and receivers.
With six members continually pushing extreme sound pressure levels, the band considers in ear monitor performance absolutely critical.
“Since we moved onto Sennheiser wireless in ear monitors 2-1/2 years ago, we have never experienced a failure,” explains Harmond.
Currently, the band is using six channels of Sennheiser’s ew 300 IEM G3 system. “They have performed flawlessly on stage — even on the Warped Tour where there are about 100 other bands nearby.”
“When we first started out, we didn’t know much about wireless,” says Harmond. “But after touring for a couple of years, we realized that we can have a dramatic impact on the quality of our performances by making the right equipment choices.”
During one gig in Germany, Harmond recalls when their choice of Sennheiser made all the difference: “We had our own in ear monitors and another band showed up with a different system. For some reason, theirs wouldn’t work, but ours did. I realized at that point there was a very good reason we decided to go with Sennheiser.”
Having top quality microphones and wireless equipment from Sennheiser has enabled Chelsea Grin to sound great no matter where they play: “Audio quality has always been very important to us and we want to sound the best we possibly can at every single gig,” Harmond concludes. “Now we can roll up to any venue — whether it has a capacity of 2,000 or 20,000 — and know that whatever is coming through the PA is the best we can possibly give. It is nice to be charting our own destiny rather than having to rely on whatever is in the house system. We are very grateful for our relationship with Sennheiser.”