I went to see the Periphery/Born of Osiris tour last week, and although I was prepared for a lack of real guitar amps (they both use Fractal Audio Axe-FX processors), I was shocked and scandalized by the two Australian opening bands (Twelve Foot Ninja and Dead Letter Circus) who both had iPads on stage with them – potentially for their guitar processing? It’s hard to tell, given that the only physical cabs on stage the whole night were the bass cabs and the possibly faux Mesa guitar cabs for Born of Osiris, and since a cab is usually also a table for the rest of the rig, we saw essentially nothing but iPad. The Twelve Foot Ninja iPad I saw looked like it was maybe running JamUp or another amp modeler, but the Dead Letter Circus ones had a bunch of sliders and nothing else. Was that a mix for their in-ear monitors? I am PERPLEXED. The tones I heard all night long were solid, and if some of those were coming straight out of an app, then color me impressed.
(*Editor’s note: We’re working on an rig rundown piece for Twelve Foot Ninja now, so I’ll ask him what the deal is with the iPad. Last I head 12ftN used a Line6 Pod floorboard, at least for the guitar moddling, but things may have changed since then.)
Seems like if you’re a touring band, hauling just your iPad and your guitars would be pretty ideal. If you don’t require a lot of complex stuff, you could go pretty much anywhere with it. It’s the wave of the future, folks. (*Editor’s pun: or the… WAV… of the future, eh?)
Here are some of the new ways to get your iPad out of the house and onto the stage: