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another question about recording drums

Discussion in 'Drums' started by elephantwest, May 24, 2006.

  1. elephantwest

    elephantwest Guest

    the crash cymbals on my current recording ( 80ies thrash metal) just wash, in other words there is very little attack and identifying single hits is very hard on the recording, is there a way to emphasize the hits in the mixing process, or is this a matter of choosing the right cymbals beforehand only...

    imo this is my best recording so far (mostly due to the nights i've spent browsing this forum), esp. drums, with a beautiful stereo image and punch, making the cymbals sound more defined would really be the icing on the cake, any suggestions???
  2. mud5150

    mud5150 Guest

    if there is no attack in the dry recording it would be pretty tough to try and fake it. You could overdub some cymbal hits and add those in, but next time start at he source make sure you hear the attack while your playing. Then check your dry tracks no good, fix and retry, trying to add tone during mixdown is a waste of time and damn near impossible
  3. Cucco

    Cucco Distinguished Member

    Mar 8, 2004
    Fredericksburg, VA
    Usually when I find that the cymbals are a "wash" of sound, it means the drummer is hitting them too hard.

    I am quite fortunate in that I have 3 studio drummers here all with degrees in music (ranging from Berklee to VCU). One of the biggest differences I hear in their playing versus most of my regular drum clients' drumming is how they attack their cymbals. It's usually with finesse and control, not wildly smacking the bejeezus out of them.

    Of course, not hearing your cymbals, I could be totally off. In which case, never mind...

  4. elephantwest

    elephantwest Guest

    thanks a lot mud and cucco! I was already anxious there might be no way to repair this during mixdown. I doubt blending in overdubs on a zillion bpm drum groove will change my situation, as the drummer was using the crash cymbals like most peoploe use hihat and ride...better luck next time :cry:

    BROKENBONES Active Member

    Jul 18, 2004
    Home Page:
    Try using some careful compression.It can do heaven for a drum sound.
  6. saemskin

    saemskin Active Member

    Nov 6, 2005
    I may be talking out of turn here, but couldnt you take the waveform for the cymbal crash and either timeshrink the front of it to create a false attack, or create a quick fade that simulates an attack? Maybe a combination of both.
  7. Tom Fodor

    Tom Fodor Active Member

    Jun 25, 2003
    Queensland Australia
    Maybe some tight expansion at a specific frequency to lift the lid only on the cymbal strikes? I don't know if it can be done. Some of the more experienced Guys here may have a better theory. I would think that the initial strike would have a different tone to the rest of the cymbals ring/wash, and that this could be isolated and enhanced this way.....Or am I just being a bit silly?
  8. passion1

    passion1 Guest

    another opinion....

    The problem could be that the drummer is using the wrong cymbal for what you want on tape. It could also be from the room in which the drums were recorded. If the room had a lot of live, reflective surfaces, you're sound is filled with too many early reflections that are blurring the sound the mics are picking up,
  9. rudedogg

    rudedogg Guest

    another trick is to use a little gaffers tape on the bottom of the cymbals, and get them to not wash out as long. The other thing is to use compression to get the attack and quiet the wash.


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