The band’s mission involved transforming an old swimming pool into an acoustically balanced rehearsal facility. The greatest sonic anomaly involved early reflections off the plaster walls surrounding the pool, which is kidney shaped with curved walls, making it difficult to predict the angle of reflections. Sound was reflected in every direction with little attenuation due to the hard wall surfaces. Intelligibility of sound sources was almost completely lost, which resulted in hearing/ear fatigue.
“I've used Auralex products with all the bands I've commanded,” says Chief Warrant Officer Three, William S. McCulloch, who is the commander and conductor of the 10th Mountain Division Band. “This project started with an email requesting recommendations for acoustic treatment for our "shallow end”. I received an immediate response from Auralex, at which point the company provided diagrams and suggestions for absorption and diffusion throughout the space.”
Auralex Acoustics recommended several of its 3” StudioFoam Wedge products, which include six 2’X4’X3” StudioFoam wedges in each box. 3” StudioFoam Wedges are recommended for rooms with higher SPLs (Sound Pressure Levels) or more low frequencies, while providing a well-controlled, more accurate sound in any size room.
“As we started adding pieces of 3" foam around the room, positive results were instantly noticed,” continues McCulloch. “I've worked with audio for almost 20 years and have studied acoustic treatment techniques, but this was the first time I've gotten to witness the before and after in a large room. When I originally looked at the treatment plan, it didn't seem like enough foam to make a difference. I was simply amazed by the results.”
“As a Major in the United States Army who has served in Southwest Asia, I had a personal and patriotic commitment to this project,” says Tim Martin, director of sales and marketing at Auralex Acoustics. “Bands within the United States Army, such as the 10th Mountain Division Band, really make a difference while serving overseas, as they not only inspire the men and women of the Army, but also our sister services and allies. I am proud of our military and glad we were able to assist them in accomplishing their mission.”
The 10th Mountain Division Band consists of several smaller musical groups including a marching band, big band jazz ensemble, jazz combo, rock band, woodwind quintet and the Dixieland Band. It is also comprised of two brass quintets, salsa band, Celtic band, a recorder group, solo pianist and guitarist. In support of the men and women in the country’s armed forces, the band performs all over Iraq, ranging from dining facilities to tents to outdoor stages.