My band is wanting to record our debut album this summer in a professional studio environment. We've written all original material and plan to tighten up our songs as much as possible in the coming months. I have a few questions that I hope some of you may be able to answer. One of my biggest concerns is with our drummer. He's only been a drummer for almost four years now. Over a year ago he said that it's not always necessary to play to a metronome in the studio. I knew there were exceptions to this rule, but thought it best to play to one in nearly all cases. I've since researched the topic more and have come to find this is mostly true. We play psychedelic metal. Not really hardcore stuff just heavy, melodic metal. Hell, people call Tool hard rock now since the advent of all the metal 'core' bands. I imagine they'll eventually get demoted to children's lullabies in another 10 years. I digress. My main concern is his ability to play to a metronome. We've tried it at rehearsals and it went about as expected. He couldn't groove to it and he found it very irritating. I've told him in the coming months he should try to get more acquainted with it. Hopefully he does this on his own time. Our demo we recorded over a year ago was done to a metronome and though it sounds amateur as one would expect I liked the way it came together with the metronome. A friend of mine who is a great drummer did the work on our demo after we let go of our first drummer. My main concern when we get to the studio is getting the best possible drum takes we can. When we play live with him he can really get on a role and find that nice pocket. But as of now the metronome kills his groove. I hear you really only want to record jazz artists and jam bands in a live setting and that harder rock/metal lends itself more to dubbing and therefore the metronome is key to a great production. I agree with this and I definitely want to be able to work with dubs to help get huge guitar sounds. I play rhythm guitar and sing. One of my questions is if we were to record in at least a semi live setting, will that make dubs next to impossible? I do play a lot of power chords and such since I play rhythm and would primarily want them to help produce a wall of sound for key parts in songs. I point this out so people know that I won't be dubbing super technical parts. I'm torn as of now. I don't want to sacrifice techniques we could use to polish our work in the studio due to our drummers possible inability to play to a metronome, while at the same time I don't want an uninspired drum sound. I'm wanting to make tempo maps in the next month or two. With something besides the incessant beep and have it replaced by more grooveable sounds (shakers and drumloops possibly.) I hear just making the metronome work for you can help immensely. This is where I am now. If anybody has any suggestions or anything to share about what considerations we should make before recording I would greatly appreciate it!