“Grittiness, tenderness and unapologetic contradictions all beautifully presented in real-time.”
Coachella, glitch and Valium. Control Freak Systems talk to Notch about their experience bringing a real story of beauty and dysfunction to life in real-time. After a prolonged period of silence, Atlanta born trap artist Future surprised fans with the release of his fifth and sixth studio albums, FUTURE and HNDRXX. Both albums went to number one consecutively, a first for the Billboard 200. The album releases would coincide with world tour ‘Nobody Safe’ featuring special guests Drake, Migos, TY Dolla Sign and Kodak Black with Young Thug and ASAP Ferg. With a design prompt to create a raw, mind-altering experience for this fast-paced show, Control Freak chose Notch.
Design agency Nimblist were chosen to turn Futures story of love, drugs and the game into a visual feast. The tour, a vigorous 34-arena production kicking off at Coachella, would be screen and content heavy. Control Freak Systems were brought in to design and integrate the multiple screens. The design had to be suited to Coachella’s huge house system as well as the angled upstage wall that would be used throughout the rest of the tour, “we needed a design to work at Coachella and on tour, for an artist who was stepping up his game to a new level” explains Control Freak’s Johnathon Flores. Flown and IMAG screens were also incorporated alongside band riser screens which were built into moveable stage props.
The team had three weeks of rehearsals and programming in the lead up to Coachella, and an additional week of rehearsals to put the show into its touring form. Previously Control Freak had produced artmag effects using a sidecar server, however, this time went with disguise. disguise’s playout system using disguise 4×4’s allowed them to carry less gear and reduced their processing latency. Pre-built effects were integrated with Notch’s real-time IMAG effects and Notch particle systems, datamosh, VHS blur and delay post FX effects were used to create a codeine-fueled vaporwave aesthetic. “The content of the show moves between colourful psychedelia to a hard glitch aesthetic. We wanted to mirror this content in the IMAG, which made Notch the perfect tool for the job. Harsh colours, datamosh and what was described as a ‘Visual Orgy’ of a show, brought together by Notch content is what gave this show it’s distinct look. The goal for this show was to tell a story of beauty and dysfunction”.