Aggressive Drum sounds


Do these look aggressive? It is a Mapex signature series maple/walnut drum set. We (the band “Waiting for December” and I) just began tracking this weekend. They are a local band out of West Chester. Anyway, it has been a very long time since I recorded music like this. The drummer is much like me in that he wanted to retune his time for different songs so he and the bass player could play off each other.

There are a lot of mics on these drums. I have 16 tracks including the close, overheads and room mic. He had drum pedals I have never seen before. Completely machined aluminum and are direct-drive. There are even dial indicators for how much resistance they have as well as adjustments for pedal throw.

So, they left a little while ago and I was messing around with “packaging” the kit to the stereo buss. This is really rough but I wanted to get a little feedback on what I achieved to see what you think. This is only drums. No guitars or anything else. I used some eqs transient shapers, a pinch of delay and with a smidge of M/S processing on the room mic. There is no compression or parallel on the overall drum buss (yet).

Whadda ya think? I just noticed listening on my laptop that the room and ERs from the room are noticeable and I 'm not sure about it yet. Have to hear it in with the guitars and bass. I think it will be fine.


Feedback Appreciated.

Have to hear it in a mix, but it’s sounding a little thin and brittle here, Tom. Comparing it to an AD patch I use for a similar style that’s thick and lush dry.

Thanks Nate.

I guess I should just trigger everything into AD :teef: :smiley:

Sounds pretty good here… needs more cowbell though :mrgreen: Aggressive? I’d agree.

How it will sound with everything else, hard to say, not knowing what’s being added.

Cheers :sunglasses:

Pretty good, I take it this is the project you got the ribbon for to try on guitars?

As it stands, sounds good on it’s own, cymbals/OH/room are a bit on the loud side I’d say, kicks/snr will probably need to come up a lot if using in heavy tracks! Once compressed those cymbals are going to get even more aggressive (not a bad thing) but as stated without the rest of the stuff in it’s really hard to tell?

Nice sound, man!
but…I prefer 2 mics for snare (top/bottom) and bd (front/kick) - with this combination you get a very clean and powerful drum sound in the mix. (oh, If possible, of course!) On your pic I saw only one mic for SD (?)
I would give up the room mics, because most of the rooms sounds bad. (for this you can use an IR-FX e.g.)
my choice:
4 BD (double bd)
2 SD
1 HH
1 Ride
2 A-B (Cym´s)
the rest: TT´s…

I used to use two mics on snare for years, but as of the last year or so I found I was never using the bottom mic in the drum mix so just gave up using one! much preferring the smack or whatever of the top skin without diluting it with the bottom mic. I suppose it depends really?

yes, and I must admit that I´m often use only one mic for sd currently.
…if needed I add a little bit DrumAgog® :wink:
oh, Cubase 6 also has great possibilities to do this…

Big fan of Drumagog :sunglasses:

+1 !
erm…don´t tell the drummer… :mrgreen:

That left kick head is crooked, surely that affects the sound. :mrgreen:

It’s a nice looking kit, although white is too virginal to look aggressive. :slight_smile:

It sounds good, but maybe a bit heavy on the room mics, unless you’re looking for the Bonham sound.
Is that you playing them, Tom?
Those are aggressive parts, but I think an aggressive drummer would hit them harder,
thereby changing the tone and giving a more aggressive feel.

That looks like a Mapex Saturn or Orion kit with Axis bass pedals. Should sound fantastic tuned well but that many drums is hard to get a consistent overall tuning. ie: You will always find one “honker” or one that rattles the snare depending. Close mics plus overheads, Neuman’s if available, 8 to 12 ft away and balance the two with most to the overheads and close mics blended, don’t overdo the close mics, for weight.

General info:
Look up “Tune-bot + drums” a drum tuning dial which you may find a good investment @ $150
Look up " (Jeff?) Ocheltree + Bonham kit + tuning" for a breakdown, by JBs ex tech, how he tuned the kit. Going around the kit hitting samples of resos and batters.

JBs kit was mic’ed just snare, bass and overheads.

Cool Video. Never saw it before. I’m going to pull out my Supraphonic and screw around with it.

Yep it is a Saturn. We’ve lucked out. The only honkers, if you would call them that, would be the roto toms.
The toms stay in tune really well. We actually were checking every 3 songs, which was usually when we had to change tunings anyway. There is one moon gel on a floor tom, the 16, and part of one on the snare.

For this session, I don’t want a mic in front of the kit. I have one behind the kit with the axis averaged between the toms closest to the snare and the snare. Imagine using a laser and aiming it to the rim of the snare drum, 5’ away elevated where the axis is averaged between the toms and the snare. This let us capture the kit with the thwacks of the toms and snare. The transients are much more forward than they would have been in front of the kit, especially if I had one at 12’ away.

Tuning is an art for sure. I don’t think I will ever use a drum dial. I tune with a piano or toner. Want a little secrete to perfect drum tuning?

Well here you go. If you have a smart phone, get a tone generator that has a chromatic scale. Pitch up your head and get it close to the note you want to tune to. Then turn on the generator and hold the speaker close to the head where you would strike to listen to pitch being generated by your phone then start turning the key. When you achieve unison the sound level of the pitch will increase. Whala! Perfect pitch! :smiley:

Don’t tell anyone because I think I am the only one that has ever done it this!

Oh, I will also take both heads off and suspend the shell and hit it with a rubber mallet to know it’s resonant frequency too.

Thanks for all the listens everyone. I will keep ya posted.

Thanks for the listen Robin :slight_smile:

That would be that ribbon that is giving the room sound :slight_smile: The cymbal overheads on their own sound really direct. The band is taking an interesting approach with their album. They are recording the drums first. All the songs are charted out. You should see the file I have on it all, a stack of paper 5mm thick!

Twas a quick and dirty packaging of the kit to the stereo buss. There is room for a lot more of whatever. I got really good sounds to start me thinks. Was really concerned about using 57s on some of the toms. I haven’t used them in a really long time. The mc012s I usually use couldn’t handle the spls.

There are actually 2 mics on the snare as requested by one of the members who went to full sail. To be honest, I could take it or leave it. there isn’t much body to it. Just a lot of pzzzzzzzzz. If you listen to the track again, you’ll hear it. What I did was took the mono under snare mic and made it stereo, i think with a 9 ms delay to one side in this mix to make the snare sound wider. I would prefer a mic on the shell of it instead. Going to try it on Wednesday when they are back for the last 5 songs.

hehe That’s just duh head.

Yeah Lenny, I think the room mic is a little heavy too. I wanted to capture the kit in a certain way, so I think I will add a couple of gobos to bring the room down and get that kit “overall sound” a bit tighter.

They mic’d Bonham’s kit with just two mics. Doesn’t get more powerful and agressive than that. :wink:

Yeah, and the Beatles recorded on 4-track tape…


I don’t mean to be disrespectful, but there is a difference between the kit on the pic and Bonham’s kit: Bonham! :wink:

Sounds good to me. I could use maybe a tad more spread