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  #1  
Old 11-09-2012, 05:31 AM
Shild Shild is offline
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Default What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

I just auditioned for a thrash metal band. One of the songs we did was a Cro-mags cover of the song "Hard Times". I learned to play it watching video's of the Cro-mags doing it live. I could do it at about that speed. But when I played with these guys they really accelerated the speed of the song beyond my ability to play it. They truly made me look like I suck! Most people agree the drummer is the one who is supposed to set the speed. What do you do when they keep pushing the beat faster and faster? It really seemed like if I held my ground they would have left me far behind...
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Old 11-09-2012, 06:51 AM
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

You could tell them that they were playing it too fast. Maybe suggest they play to a click that way they will know when they are speeding up.
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  #3  
Old 11-09-2012, 07:05 AM
Anthony Amodeo
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

love that song and that band
they raised me

F it bro .....its NY hardcore......it's supposed to be played that way

:)
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Old 11-09-2012, 08:54 AM
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Pocket-full-of-gold Pocket-full-of-gold is offline
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

Live? Head down, bum up and go like a bat outta hell to keep up. Anything to keep the vibe from withering and dying a long and slow death in front of a paying crowd. You do the very best you can without killing the thing.

In rehearsal? Once we start meandering around the countryside each with his own unique interpretation of the correct tempo, we stop, we agree to pick a tempo, we agree to play it at that tempo and we agree to keep rehearsing it correctly til we get it right and we're all on the same page. That's what a rehearsal is for.

Granted, I don't play speed metal and have never been pushed past breaking point on tempo alone. But I've certainly encountered similar situations where the whole thing just didn't gel and we all seem to be doing our own thing and that's the approach that's worked for me.
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Old 11-09-2012, 09:19 AM
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keep it simple keep it simple is offline
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

I think this is a superb general question, that not only relates to speed, but also overall ability. I think the answer is the same either way though; a/ You either take the song away & practice to get your drumming up to speed/correct according to the band's desires, & hope they give you time to do that, or b/ you agree with the band to pull the song back to a level where you're comfortable.

In your particular case, if the band is progressively speeding up, then that becomes a band tempo discipline issue for all. If the band starts the song fast, & is happy to keep it that way, you've got to get that drumming nailed.

Not speed related, but this scenario happened to me very recently. I was messing with some grooves as the band was first stage forming a song. The band liked one particular groove, problem is, I wasn't very good at it. I could have brushed their opinion aside & watered the groove complexity down, but instead, I went away & nailed it. That meant me practicing (& many here will know, that's something I have almost no time for). Anyhow, Andy turned up at the next practice with that groove 99% there, & all were happy (I'll let some road miles take care of the missing 1%).
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Old 11-09-2012, 09:29 AM
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Anon La Ply Anon La Ply is offline
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

When things get tough I simplify. I prefer to get an okay part right to fluffing an amazing part. I suspect that in speed metal my approach would be seen as a surrender ...
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Old 11-09-2012, 10:38 AM
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

While you're practicing your brains out to get the tempo up to snuff...try this....next time you're with them, tell 'em you want to practice the song at a little slower pace so you can figure out a part....don't know which part, make it up....then, determine the tempo how YOU think it should be, and practice it that way.
Once they see that you can play it, maybe they'll see that if they pull a little back on the tempo, it might sound better for the time being. Doubtless they'll want you to work up to that tempo, but if they can see you can play it a little slower, maybe you'll get a little breathing room for the time being.

But really, you're likely to meet this problem again. You picked a genre that uses speed over anything else.
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Old 11-09-2012, 05:07 PM
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

Here's an alternate view. Its an audition, they are checking you out as much as you them.
Ask yourself:
do *you* want to play with a band that plays too fast, and doesn't give a damn?
Do *you* want to relinquish your job as the pacekeeper to them, and be a follower?

IMO playing too fast just doesn't sound good.Its a wash.Like turning up the speed to 78 on your vinyl record (if anybody here besides me listens to vinyl still).
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  #9  
Old 11-09-2012, 05:33 PM
gmrakich gmrakich is offline
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

Morph over into halftime, and then speed up until they can't keep up.
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  #10  
Old 11-09-2012, 05:41 PM
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

If they can't keep time maybe they are playing beyond their ability, not yours? Are you sure this is the right band for you?
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Old 11-09-2012, 08:44 PM
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

I second the idea of practicing all your songs on your own...working out moving back and forth to half time.

This can happen in any genre of music...not unique to fast tempo music that has a dominate distorted guitar sound...

I suggest formalizing your role as tempo setter at the beginning of the song...and implementing a common click should the problem continue.
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  #12  
Old 11-09-2012, 09:02 PM
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gaz farrimond gaz farrimond is offline
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

How did the rest of the audition go? How many other tracks did you do? How do you feel they went? Do you think you may be getting another call from them?

I've done a couple of auditions where I've thought that I've completely destroyed any chances because I screwed up a song and still got the gig. I've also had one audition where I nailed everything perfectly, but didn't get the gig because the keyboard player and I didn't hit it off at all. Or, as recently happened, they just decided to speed it up to stretch me and see how fast I could go.

If they get back in touch for another audition, take some time out to sit down and discuss their approach to the tracks they want to play and what will work both for and against you.

I think you may be surprised how accommodating people will be for the person they feel is right for the band.
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  #13  
Old 11-10-2012, 12:45 AM
Shild Shild is offline
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gaz farrimond View Post
How did the rest of the audition go? How many other tracks did you do? How do you feel they went? Do you think you may be getting another call from them?

I've done a couple of auditions where I've thought that I've completely destroyed any chances because I screwed up a song and still got the gig. I've also had one audition where I nailed everything perfectly, but didn't get the gig because the keyboard player and I didn't hit it off at all. Or, as recently happened, they just decided to speed it up to stretch me and see how fast I could go.

If they get back in touch for another audition, take some time out to sit down and discuss their approach to the tracks they want to play and what will work both for and against you.

I think you may be surprised how accommodating people will be for the person they feel is right for the band.
Thanks for the replies everyone.

As for how the rest of the audition went, There was another song they did that I couldn't keep up with and a third song they did that the beginning of went very well but I didn't really know the whole 6 minute song with all it's changes. The singer didn't go to this rehearsal so that was part of the problem. I did however prove to these guys I could do decent blast beats... I only had a week to get this stuff down...
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Old 11-10-2012, 12:51 AM
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

A few things;

When I transitioned from guitar to drums I had a problem chasing other players with bad time. I felt I had to lock in with them (wherever they were) to be perceived as a valid drummer. Eventually, after playing with both good and marginal musicians, I learned to set the time and groove, and stick to it. As Hal Galper points out in this vid (thanks to Pol for turning me on to this series) http://youtu.be/a2XnB5G6oSc to hear the beat and the music so loudly in my own head that it only comes out where I hear it. So if folks start rushing ahead of you, stay the course and make them come back to you. I was at a jam the other night where the regular drummer is one of those folks who plays way on top and people tend to chase him resulting in a rush. After the first song, the leader remarked to the bass player "So that's how that song sounds when we don't rush and the tempo's consistent".

You should practice to the point where you can play something much faster than necessary. Just getting through it isn't enough. You should be comfortable enough with it that you are concentrating on the musical aspects of it. Feeling the pulse, following the dynamics, finding the syncopation within the members of the group that makes the sound feel alive.

To that end (although it's probably harder with metal music where certain high speed things are de-rigure for the genre) when the tempo is beyond you, try simplifying the part that's causing trouble. For example, when confronted with a Samba that's faster than I'm comfortable with, I'll usually skip all the double strokes on the kick. Concentrating on hitting a single stroke on the one so that the pulse and drive is there. I can usually get the second beat to come in place and after awhile both double strokes may fall into place. But I concentrate on what I feel is the essential parts and leave the ornamentation to either fall into place comfortably, or be left out as my day is going.

The last thing has to do with the confusion between playing ahead of the beat and playing with drive. A lot of people think that you have to play the entire pattern ahead of where everyone else is to achieve drive. Not so. Go back and listen to the great drummers who made things come alive and you'll find a pulse with some sort of anchor that's where it belongs. And which the rest of the band is using to keep the tempo even. Different players may be putting the forward pulse on different counts, which creates syncopation. But even if they are only hearing it in their head, they have an anchor point in the measure that keeps them from rushing. In most 4/4 patterns it is often on the 3rd beat of the measure. Sometimes, as in a swing, it is implied by dividing how far apart the 1 and 2 are and using that mid point as the anchor. That is basically the same thing as the rate (or tempo) at which those swung notes are played. Note that a swing can be displaced outward with the 1 early and the 2 late, or inward with the 1 late and the 2 early. But the rate at which you repeat doing that is the tempo. If you are doing 16th kick strokes in metal, you can still put a bit of pulse into it. 1 on top, 2 pulled back to offset, 3 on top and 4 back a corresponding amount. It doesn't take much to convey some drive. You don't need to make a highly offset hip-hop thing out of it. Just enough pulse that it feels energetic. With the tempo steady, and an anchor point to lock into, the band shouldn't been chasing you and rushing.
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  #15  
Old 11-10-2012, 03:28 PM
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

I'm merely an amateur but it's surely for the drummer to push the beat in any band ??

The drummer keeps the beat....the band should follow...if it's too slow for the band then the drummer needs to speed it up and if he can't then it's the wrong band or more practice is required.

The band I'm in frequently play songs at different tempos going from fast to outrageously pacey....depends on our mood.......we rehearsed on Wednesday and I was seriously ill so some of the songs were quite dramatically slowed down (by me)....when a gig goes well we'll often do an encore of Blitzkrieg Bop at total breakneck speed.

But...the absolute key is that I count the songs in....they go with me....I sometimes speed a song up if it seems to make sense at the time....they follow.

Am I wrong ?
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Old 11-10-2012, 03:29 PM
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

Hey Shild don't be out off mate I took a listen to the band you pm'd me and to be honest it is pretty standard paced for the music type. It won't take long to pick up pace if you can play most of their stuff ok. So I think it's quite positive.

Something similar happended to me regarding pace a long time back. I'd been playing about 3 years and in 1991 we did a 30 date Euro tour supporting NYHC band Go! at the time I was playing double kick in the Crossover type band. We played with NoFx a few times on that tour. The first time a saw Erik from NoFx play I was blown away, he was twice as fast as me on a single kick. So I ditched the double. We got back and I spent three rehearsals a week and gigs over the next 10 months getting up to speed. We then went out in 1992 on a 50 date Euro tour supporting New York Power Violence band Hell No! and I was much happier. Just before the tour in 1992 we were rehearsing and I bloke came into the room from the room next to ours he was asking how long I'd been playing double kick, I explained I was playing a single and his jaw dropped.

It just takes practice to get up to Hardcore speeds, you will crack it easy enough. Just relax and use your wrists more. As said above the tempo is Punk and will always be played too fast, this isn't a Rolling Stones cover band... :)

Take it easy bro.

Paul
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  #17  
Old 11-14-2012, 09:47 AM
Shild Shild is offline
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Default Re: What do you do when the band pushes the beat beyond your ability?

Thanks for the replies everyone! Thanks PDL, that's he answer I was looking for. I've been away a while but now have my chance to look at these answers:)
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