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  #41  
Old 07-16-2016, 08:27 PM
newlin newlin is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

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Originally Posted by WhoIsTony? View Post
if you cannot "pull anything off" on a given bass drum ... the truth is that it has everything to do with you and very very little to do with the bass drum and it's tuning or tension

if your pedal is working even close to properly you should have no problem pulling off what you need to off a paper bag, a basketball, or a house kit bass drum tuned by a random sound engineer
I totally agree with this.
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  #42  
Old 07-16-2016, 09:01 PM
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Altar Altar is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

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Originally Posted by newlin View Post
Oh man! Good to hear someone appreciate the great production of St. Vincent's drums! So good. I agree they sound like they might be some pretty cheap stuff, but it works so well on her records. They sit well, and where they don't sit, it's precisely because the NEED to stand out and sound a little weird for musical reasons. Love it.
Absolutely! And cheap drums are definitely their own sound, not to be dismissed in the realm of recording, partially because you can f*ck them up pretty well without worrying too much. I could never bring myself to port a USA custom bass drum shell but I'd happily do it to a low end pearl kick. Screwing with snare beds, drilling for jingles, all fair game with dirt cheap drums.

And yeah, both St. Vincent and MBD have an incredible way of incorporating the most unexpected drum sounds and overall instrumentation, and just making it sound absolutely delightful.
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  #43  
Old 07-16-2016, 09:40 PM
Drumlove65 Drumlove65 is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

So does anyone subscribe to the view that a good drummer with proper technique equipped with knowledge of heads and tuning can make the cheapest drum kit sound good?
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  #44  
Old 07-17-2016, 04:45 AM
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoIsTony? View Post
if you cannot "pull anything off" on a given bass drum ... the truth is that it has everything to do with you and very very little to do with the bass drum and it's tuning or tension

if your pedal is working even close to properly you should have no problem pulling off what you need to off a paper bag, a basketball, or a house kit bass drum tuned by a random sound engineer

'Pulling off what you need' is very subjective. When you're at a kit you want to be comfortable to be able to pull off everything you can, if you need.

Your pedal is dialed into your kick, its dialed in to be the most comfortable to play, if you remove the pedal form your kick and put it on a different kick, you either adjust the bass drum, which is usually the case, or you adjust the pedal, or both. You don't always get to play on your own kick thats set to the tension/angle that's most comfortable for you. Sometimes its easier to mess with the pedal (depending on the pedal) than it is the BD.

To say one should be able to pull off what they need would signify a willingness to limit ones ability, when only a simple adjustment could be needed. Drummers are used to what they're used to, when confronted with a different angle at the kit, a diff feel, they make adjustments, the goal first is comfort of play, sound follows.






Quote:
Originally Posted by Drumlove65 View Post
So does anyone subscribe to the view that a good drummer with proper technique equipped with knowledge of heads and tuning can make the cheapest drum kit sound good?
Sound is subjective, feel is not if feeling your best while executing is the goal, you know what that is. If I feel great, I sound great. If I feel off/challenged my execution is going to reflect that, Im no different than any other drummer in that respect.
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  #45  
Old 07-17-2016, 07:48 AM
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Jeff Almeyda Jeff Almeyda is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

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Originally Posted by Les Ismore View Post
'Pulling off what you need' is very subjective. When you're at a kit you want to be comfortable to be able to pull off everything you can, if you need.

Your pedal is dialed into your kick, its dialed in to be the most comfortable to play, if you remove the pedal form your kick and put it on a different kick, you either adjust the bass drum, which is usually the case, or you adjust the pedal, or both. You don't always get to play on your own kick thats set to the tension/angle that's most comfortable for you. Sometimes its easier to mess with the pedal (depending on the pedal) than it is the BD.

To say one should be able to pull off what they need would signify a willingness to limit ones ability, when only a simple adjustment could be needed. Drummers are used to what they're used to, when confronted with a different angle at the kit, a diff feel, they make adjustments, the goal first is comfort of play, sound follows.

Sound is subjective, feel is not if feeling your best while executing is the goal, you know what that is. If I feel great, I sound great. If I feel off/challenged my execution is going to reflect that, Im no different than any other drummer in that respect.

I regularly sit behind house kits, throw the double pedal on and play without any of these considerations. Did a big show last week in Brooklyn where there was no rug and I had to kick the slave back into position every few minutes. One of the best gigs of the year.

Sometime I think we are all guilty of over-analyzing this stuff.
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  #46  
Old 07-17-2016, 06:35 PM
Stefan Brodsky Stefan Brodsky is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

When I first got my Yammies, I tried using a full bed pillow, but my 20" x 16" kick was too dead. My guitarist then gave me a drum pillow, which one of his daughter's former boyfriends owned. It is roughly the size of a computer keyboard (lengthwise and about 3.5" thick) which I can place either end up against the batter and reso heads as needed, OR parallel to them, depending on the room and how it sounds, particularly while a mic is in use. (I use a Carvin kick drum mic, which I got for about $70). Either way, this pillow works just about perfectly, with an Emad batter and the Remo factory reso, which came with the set. I do have a 4" port at 4 o'clock. I once tried to put some velco with a sticky side into the lower part of the kick, but it limited the positioning which I just mentioned, so removed it. I like having the flexibility.
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  #47  
Old 07-17-2016, 10:38 PM
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Almeyda View Post
I regularly sit behind house kits, throw the double pedal on and play without any of these considerations. Did a big show last week in Brooklyn where there was no rug and I had to kick the slave back into position every few minutes. One of the best gigs of the year.

Sometime I think we are all guilty of over-analyzing this stuff.


I'd call that being guilty of complacency, laziness. Speaking for myself, I've been in that situation, don't encounter it 'regularly', but it shows up from time to time. It only takes a instance or two and then it becomes a learning experience, depending on the person of course, you become more prepared for the next one.



Let's use that gig as an example. You show up to a gig, backline kit, no rug, the kick sounds great tho, but you'da had'a rug underneath to keep everything from sliding if it was your set-up. Most drummers if they're encountering this 'regularly' will either bring straps/chains, maybe even a rug to provided kit gigs, they're not going to be looking fwd to playing w/o a rug and having their pedals slide all over the place, a couple times of this and its a learning experience.

Now let's hypothetically say there were multiple bands at this gig example, the next bands drummer brought a rug, they threw it down, the band is playing fine, but you notice the drums sound a little different, especially the BD, it sounds better. Your good friends band is scheduled to play next, right after rug drummers band and they tell you their drummer is going to be late, might not make it, they ask if you'll cover, you say "yes".

Rug drummers set ends and says its cool to use the rug, gonna be there all night, watch the rest of the bands. So now, same kit/tuning with a rug, pedals not sliding. You set up your stuff, but notice rug drummer has loosened the BD head to a point where you can't get a comfortable rebound, it feels off, you go with it, and by the middle of the first song you realize playing your kick pedal is not comfortable. The song ends and you decide to just 'go w/it'... you'll burn into it. 3 songs in and its not getting better, you're working way too hard on the BD to be comfortable, there's stress now.

In most situations, an experienced drummer would've tightened up the kick, or made some pedal adjustment to feel comfortable during execution, not suffer needlessly thru the set, the sound of the kick would take a back seat to comfort, and rightly so.
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  #48  
Old 07-18-2016, 03:33 AM
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PQleyR PQleyR is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

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Originally Posted by newlin View Post
Yeah. but that's partly because people always have kick drums that can't cut and we've just got used to it, so we mic 'em. But it doesn't have to be that way.
If you're playing for 5000 people, you will probably need a mic. And tonnes of resonance is often not a good thing if you're close micing a kick drum for a big PA.
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  #49  
Old 07-18-2016, 03:52 AM
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ineedaclutch ineedaclutch is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

Quote:
Originally Posted by WhoIsTony? View Post
if you cannot "pull anything off" on a given bass drum ... the truth is that it has everything to do with you and very very little to do with the bass drum and it's tuning or tension

if your pedal is working even close to properly you should have no problem pulling off what you need to off a paper bag, a basketball, or a house kit bass drum tuned by a random sound engineer
Right?! Everything from a Sound Percussion with a head that feels like a table top, to a DW that some "engineer" tuned so loose that he lost 2 claws. Some just think waaaaay too into this stuff.
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  #50  
Old 07-18-2016, 03:59 AM
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Jeff Almeyda Jeff Almeyda is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

Quote:
Originally Posted by Les Ismore View Post
I'd call that being guilty of complacency, laziness. Speaking for myself, I've been in that situation, don't encounter it 'regularly', but it shows up from time to time. It only takes a instance or two and then it becomes a learning experience, depending on the person of course, you become more prepared for the next one.



Let's use that gig as an example. You show up to a gig, backline kit, no rug, the kick sounds great tho, but you'da had'a rug underneath to keep everything from sliding if it was your set-up. Most drummers if they're encountering this 'regularly' will either bring straps/chains, maybe even a rug to provided kit gigs, they're not going to be looking fwd to playing w/o a rug and having their pedals slide all over the place, a couple times of this and its a learning experience.

Now let's hypothetically say there were multiple bands at this gig example, the next bands drummer brought a rug, they threw it down, the band is playing fine, but you notice the drums sound a little different, especially the BD, it sounds better. Your good friends band is scheduled to play next, right after rug drummers band and they tell you their drummer is going to be late, might not make it, they ask if you'll cover, you say "yes".

Rug drummers set ends and says its cool to use the rug, gonna be there all night, watch the rest of the bands. So now, same kit/tuning with a rug, pedals not sliding. You set up your stuff, but notice rug drummer has loosened the BD head to a point where you can't get a comfortable rebound, it feels off, you go with it, and by the middle of the first song you realize playing your kick pedal is not comfortable. The song ends and you decide to just 'go w/it'... you'll burn into it. 3 songs in and its not getting better, you're working way too hard on the BD to be comfortable, there's stress now.

In most situations, an experienced drummer would've tightened up the kick, or made some pedal adjustment to feel comfortable during execution, not suffer needlessly thru the set, the sound of the kick would take a back seat to comfort, and rightly so.
Oh god, shoot me now...
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  #51  
Old 07-18-2016, 04:40 AM
moxman moxman is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

I think the original question was about muffling and how it affects the sound.. which morphed into the feel and equipment issues etc. My take on it is that Feel is king.. and the sound produced is what the 'feel' produces.. but the quality of the equipment can also affect the sound to a degree. You can tweak a cheap set to sound good but it's hard to beat the sound of a finely made and maintained instrument.

As for bass drum muffling .. for rock or any other genre it depends on the sound you are after. Wide open can be cool but a bit of muffling can focus the sound.. I find for muffling, you need to fine the sweet spot to fine tune the sound so its punchy, deep and has some resonance.. kind of the minimal amount of muffling. My favorite kick was described by a sound engineer as a 'velvet canon' which sounds weird but it basically had this soft edge but nice punchy boom.. that was a birch 22" shell with a Powerstroke 3 and a Tama Iron Cobra with one of those small square felt beaters. I later switched to a DW pedal.. but never got that sound again.. tried emads (too dead for me) and aquarians SK2s (kind of colors the sound) and when I replaced with PS3's I couldn't quite get the same sound again. Still trying! Lol..

Last edited by moxman; 07-18-2016 at 04:51 AM.
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  #52  
Old 07-20-2016, 04:07 AM
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Les Ismore Les Ismore is offline
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Default Re: Bass drum muffling

Quote:
Originally Posted by moxman View Post
I think the original question was about muffling and how it affects the sound.. which morphed into the feel and equipment issues etc. My take on it is that Feel is king.. and the sound produced is what the 'feel' produces.. but the quality of the equipment can also affect the sound to a degree. You can tweak a cheap set to sound good but it's hard to beat the sound of a finely made and maintained instrument.

As for bass drum muffling .. for rock or any other genre it depends on the sound you are after. Wide open can be cool but a bit of muffling can focus the sound.. I find for muffling, you need to find the sweet spot to fine tune the sound so its punchy, deep and has some resonance.. kind of the minimal amount of muffling. My favorite kick was described by a sound engineer as a 'velvet canon' which sounds weird but it basically had this soft edge but nice punchy boom.. that was a birch 22" shell with a Powerstroke 3 and a Tama Iron Cobra with one of those small square felt beaters. I later switched to a DW pedal.. but never got that sound again.. tried emads (too dead for me) and aquarians SK2s (kind of colors the sound) and when I replaced with PS3's I couldn't quite get the same sound again. Still trying! Lol..

Punchy, deep, resonant, some of the attributes of what we believe make up the sound of a BD.


If I get enough time with a kick, or 'its mine' it will always be tuned to a specific note (usually A). I muffle the BD drum according to feel, not sound, as any muffling I do will not change the tuned note (if it ever did, I just retune after). I can have a short A, a long(er) A, a more resonant A (change the reso head) ect. etc. If you don't feel good executing at the kit, that can be heard, the best sounding drum kit will not save anyone.





Here's the OP's first post BTW:

Quote:
I have a pretty open bass drum. Just a little bit of muffling. I worry that even though it's loud I worry that when I do faster double bass that it may be muddy sounding. So I've been thinking about putting a good sized pillow in it for more thump and less boom. Any thoughts about any of this? Just wondering what others perspective is on this topic.
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