Assuming one higher pitched crash cymbal and one lower pitched crash cymbal

bud7h4

Silver Member
Listen to Phil Rudd throughout the entire Back in Black album for a master class on which song parts merit which cymbal treatment.

Like so many things drum-related the answer is in the music. 👍
This was the first thing I too thought when reading the thread title. Highway to Hell too, but especially Back in Black. There's always a seemingly deliberate build-up or closure in his choice of crash.

In this song, I can hear those deliberate hits (0:48), as well as more random moments where it doesn't matter as much, I presume (1:46).

 
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Hewitt2

Senior Member
This was the first thing I too thought when reading the thread title. Highway to Hell too, but especially Back in Black. There's always a seemingly deliberate build-up or closure in his choice of crash.
yup - there’s an internal logic and consistency to his crash choices across the whole album. His playing is much more deliberate and compositional than might appear at first glance.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
I wish some guys would hit them a lot less than they do. I call it the "flapping cymbals syndrome." It seems to mostly affect guys coming from harder rock backgrounds taking gigs in sports bar bands playing more vocal oriented pop music. Crash cymbals here, there and everywhere.

Anyway, I think playing them less is a good way to figure out where the pitches better belong.
I agree comprehensively. Crashes are the most overused elements of a drum set. I sometimes get through entire songs without going near one. Less crashing can mean cleaner drumming, depending on the context, of course.
 

yammyfan

Senior Member
Listen to Phil Rudd throughout the entire Back in Black album for a master class on which song parts merit which cymbal treatment.

Like so many things drum-related the answer is in the music. 👍
That's the album that taught me the importance of treating cymbals as melodic elements and I play them that way to this day. I can't think of a better example. Good choice!
 
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