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Drummers: How do hit snare drum in studio?

Discussion in 'Andy Sneap' started by Erkan, Apr 4, 2009.

  1. Erkan

    Erkan mr-walker.bandcamp

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    Hey there little fellas,

    I was wondering... when I rehearse (which is rarely these days :() I usually go for rimshots because they just cut through the guitars better but lately I have been working on NOT doing rimshots because it feels like a bad habit, I pretty much always do it. So I've managed to get it out of my system and I'm now using just normal hits mixed with rimshots when it's called for.

    Question is, how do you guys do in rehearsals and live? Rimshot or no rimshot for the main snare hits?

    And the final most important question: What about in the studio? Rimshots for the extra sharp transient or just normal hits for more body in the snare? Pros and cons?

    One major con with rimshots is the stick consumption... :(
     
  2. ahjteam

    ahjteam Anssi Tenhunen

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    normalshots have better rebound and control, rimshots have more force in them.
     
  3. Erkan

    Erkan mr-walker.bandcamp

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    Yea exactly, but I think normal hits also tend to have more lows than rimshots... atleast, that's what it sounds like when I actually play the snare. I haven't done any tests and compared in the box though.

    Well I hope drummers chime in on this, I'd just like to know what people use, and if there's a "connection" between different styles of metal and the two methods mentioned (normal or rim).
     
  4. Keessi

    Keessi Everything on eleven!

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    I usually just try to play as hard as I can and with big sticks. at least 2B or bigger. usually bigger. I play rimshots on slower stuff, not blastbeats and that sorta stuff.

    btw, it sounds cool to make a sample from a rimshot and then blend that in the original snare sound. really helps it to cut through a busy mix
     
  5. Damian B

    Damian B ¯\(°_o)/¯

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    I'm a drummer, I think you're right in saying that hitting the snare slightly off-center, with a good stroke, creates a much more full bodied sound. I'm guessing that this is because you are actually getting the sound of the "space" inside the drum, if that makes sense. When you play a rimshot, the stick is hitting the metal hoop, so you get a sharp and cutting "metallic" sound that's great for cutting through, but doesn't actually convey the character of the drum. I try not to do rimshots too often because then when I do use them, I think it adds more of an effect. Since most of the time now snares are sample replaced, I guess it doesn't matter too much in the studio, though a really loud rimshot in the OH could be a pain in the ass. Yeah, I wouldn't really use them in the studio much myself.
     
  6. Erkan

    Erkan mr-walker.bandcamp

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    Yea that is interesting. I think I've done that rimshot sample blending before and it does work fairly well but one of my favorite snares from all times is from the album "Colors" by "Between the Buried and Me". The cool thing about that snare is that it isn't any sharp, it's pretty round and mellow but with plenty of "strings" from the bottom head and it's generally pretty fat. Sounds like he's just hitting it normally, no rimshots or anything but of course it's probably pretty sample replaced.

    Would actually be awesome to know how they did that snare... I'm usually not impressed by most metal snares, atleast the ones that aim for a very "smack" and "in your face" type of sound.
     
  7. Erkan

    Erkan mr-walker.bandcamp

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    Now that's a good answer, thank you :)

    You're right about the rimshot in the OH thing... didn't really think of that. Probably is best to play rimshots conservatively.
     
  8. _Brutalism_

    _Brutalism_ Member

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    Hmmm 2B is pretty heavy. I find that heavy sticks don't allow much dynamic playing with cymbals due to the weight of the stick.

    Also, I don't think one should limit oneself to playing rimshots or whatever just to cut through the mix.

    I'm sure intelligent EQing and mic placement, amongst other things, would solve this problem without constricting one's options, and again, one's freedom for dynamic playing.

    With all hits using the rim, one would then lose the chance of fully utilising accents as the listener would get used to the heavy cracking sound too much to make out any intended accented hits.

    I don't think that it's wise for the musician to change the way he plays ( unless its wrong technique and piss-poor playing) just for it to sound better in the studio, so drastically. If anything, the engineer and/or producer should should find ways to compliment the musician's playing to capture his unique style rather than contorting the way one plays in order to bring out the snare drum in the mix. If its a technical issue, then it should be dealt with technically, not changing the way the music sounds.
     
  9. xmidihcx

    xmidihcx off topic user

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    gojira, good question man! ur missing one essential element though: ¯\(°_o)/¯

    id like to hear some of these responses too...

    keessi, very interesting! 2b, aren't those shits like tree trunks dude? what tempos do you normally play with those things im curious and i think im gonna get myself a pair, i sometimes practice with my 5b's but im gonna cop a pair of 2b's soon.

    i used to work in this rehearsal studio and this awesome drummer always came in and was blasting away to morbid angel and stuff. he always used some bigass vater stickers with red tips. he was a hard ass hitter and was a tall ripped white dude (with a red afro!?:lol:) and i sware the sticks never lasted longer than a half hour. i would find broken tree trunks in the garbage all the fucking time. i beleive they were 2b's if i could remember correctly. the red tips did look awesome. (like his afro:zombie:) cheerz!

    as for me, i practice on my drums just about every other day and i love the vater 5a's with the tip or not what ever's on sale that week:lol:

    but i think the rim shots just kinda come naturally. it adds dynamics into the snare part and i use it when its called for but for the most part i always thought it was important to hit the snare hard and accurately dead center.

    at the end of the day though, if that is the sound you want, then who gives a fuck if all of ur snare hits are rim shots, i've seen drummers play that way and honestly it sounded cool as hell so fuckit rock the fuck on!:headbang::lol:
     
  10. Erkan

    Erkan mr-walker.bandcamp

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    Indeed, one shouldn't change one's playing style because of technical issues...

    And indeed once again, if it sounds good, it's all good.

    2B is something I wouldn't dare playing with though. I already fucked my hands up once a few years ago and I couldn't play drums for 6 months. I then started off again lightly, using 7A sticks, and now I'm back on 5A and I think I'll just stay right there.
     
  11. Damian B

    Damian B ¯\(°_o)/¯

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  12. J the TyranT

    J the TyranT Thats just how it is...

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    I use Vater Power 5As or Bs with nylon tips... religiously. I used to use Vics way back when.

    FWIW... the idea to hit it as hard as you can all the time? Thats shit. No dynamic control with that at ALL. That isnt drumming... thats banging shit with sticks.

    Dont understand how nylons could be "for pussies", either, but, what would I know... only been drumming for about 20 years now. Nylon tips are a bit crisper off of cymbals when being light on the dynamics.

    Brutalism has said the smartest shit in here, go with that. On top of that, it depends a shitload on what you're playing. I like a dead snare that pops through and decays just as quick. I use kevlar marching heads on a 6" deep bronze snare. Its thick as fuck. Just cracks through and goes away.

    I like pork pie's acrylics with the holes cut out, also, for the same purposes.
     
  13. metaldrmmer83

    metaldrmmer83 SF Progressive Metal

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    Hey Gojira,
    I've been playing for close to 9 years and I've tried numerous sticks and hit the drums numerous ways. I've played "through" the drum before to make myself louder than the other guys in the band, but it killed my hands. The natural vibrations of the stick striking the snare drum would resonate up my hand instead of dispersing over the drum in a circular pattern.

    Most recently, I picked up the JoJo Mayer DVD and that has changed my playing immensely. Along with focusing on the different grips and training all 5 gears of your body (fingers, wrists, forearms, arms and shoulders) the correct method to approaching the drum, he spends a lot of time talking about working with the drum. A drum is meant to have rebound and by utilizing that rebound, you play faster, get more tone out of the drum and you save your hands. I agree a drum is meant to be hit but there's a limit when the amount of force you inflict isn't going to get you anymore result.

    I don't think this answers your question on rimshot usages, but hopefully this will help in some way. Again, just my two cents.
     
  14. Atheist

    Atheist Who'r u calling a Junior?

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    For metal my main hits are all rimshot. It just doesn't sound right when hit it without rim. For none metal stuff I am all over it. With and without rim and smare, crosstick...

    Haven't recorded live drums so I don't know about the studio situation. I guess it's the same. I know what you think when you say it has less low end with rimshot, but do you really need that much of low end there? Allmost all metal drummers hit rimshots. For none rimshot hitters... LoG drummer comes to mind, but his snare is uber tightly tuned if I remember correctly... so no lower end there eather.
     
  15. brianhood

    brianhood No Care Ever

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    I'd say 99% of my snare hits live are rim shots unless it's on blast beats. I feel that in the studio, it just sounds weird if you rim shot every hit when micing the snare, so it's usually best not to do it all the time.

    I guess it just comes down to what sounds right to you!
     
  16. Metal Overload

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    I Remember the At the Gates Dvd, when they was recording the Slaughter of the soul album, they forced Adrian to do rimshots on every hit.
     
  17. Erkan

    Erkan mr-walker.bandcamp

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    This is exactly the kind of information I was out after... trying to uncover any "studio secrets" and I'm glad you mentioned that.

    Even if I don't really believe one should change the way one plays just for the sake of micing up, it's good to know what tends to sound best through the microphones. I don't doubt they had a good reason to force Adrian to do rimshots. I wonder if there are more of these kind of examples out there.
     
  18. Uladyne

    Uladyne Greg

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    This probably won't help much, but I love rimshots! In my modest experience recording drums, rimshots are easier to mix and generally sound better. The worst are drummers who don't play rimshots, and are all over the head on their backbeats. The snare track sounds like "bap.. bip..bing..bap..bong...." Uber gay. Rimshots help keep the sound consistent in my experience (making sample replacement less of a necessity in some instances), and help the snare cut through the hi hat bleed and everything. But then I'm of the school of thought where I don't care so much about the "tone" of the snare, but the impact. I want it to damn near cut heads off. So for me, rimshots FTW!
     
  19. Keessi

    Keessi Everything on eleven!

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    Here's a few vids from recent studio sessions. the first one is with vic firth metal N's, which are loads bigger than 2B and the second vid is with 5b. Usually I go for the Rock N's from vic firth but sometimes stores don't have them...

    I find it easier to blast on big logs cause I have better grip with them. plus it makes a meatier sound imo ;)
     
    #19 Keessi, Apr 4, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 19, 2015
  20. lepersmeesa

    lepersmeesa Badman rudeboy

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    Im pretty sure that Dan Foord used to hit all of his hard snare hits with a rimshot.
     

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