Skip to main content

Constructing a Metal Drum Kit Part 1

Lesson 14 from: Advanced Drum Production

Eyal Levi

Constructing a Metal Drum Kit Part 1

Lesson 14 from: Advanced Drum Production

Eyal Levi

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2200+ more >

Lesson Info

14. Constructing a Metal Drum Kit Part 1


Class Trailer

Day 1


Class Introduction


The Tone Pie and Process Overview


Getting the Lay of the Land and Q&A


Assemble Your Gear


Drum Tuning Part 1


Drum Tuning Part 2


Fine Tuning Tones Part 1


Fine Tuning Tones Part 2


General Guidelines of Tracking Drums


Tracking with Sean Reinert


Pop Quiz


Basics of Superior Drummer


EZDrummer vs Superior Drummer


Constructing a Metal Drum Kit Part 1


Constructing a Metal Drum Kit Part 2


Constructing a Rock Drum Kit


Grooves and Programming


General Q&A


Prepping Virtual Drums for the Mix


Superior Review with Q&A


Intro to Mixing and Drum Clean Up


Interview with John Douglass


Intro to Drum Editing


Manual Editing Approach


Editing with Beat Detective


Editing with Elastic Audio


Sample Layering




Gain Staging and Bussing


Mixing Essentials


Compression and Parallel Compression


Reverb and Automation


Mixing Tips and Tricks


Day 2

Day 3


Bonus: EZDrummer - Introduction


Bonus: EZDrummer - Intro to EZDrummer


Bonus: EZDrummer - EZDrummer Foundations


Bonus: EZDrummer - How a Drummer Plays


Bonus: EZDrummer - Part Writing Part 1


Bonus: EZDrummer - Part Writing Part 2


Bonus: EZDrummer - Part Writing Q&A


Bonus: EZDrummer - Intro to Grooves


Bonus: EZDrummer - Writing from Scratch


Bonus: EZDrummer - Intro to Fills


Bonus: EZDrummer - Writing Fills


Bonus: EZDrummer - Mixing in Your DAW


Bonus: EZDrummer - Bussing and EQ


Bonus: EZDrummer - Compression and Reverb


Bonus: EZDrummer - Conclusion with Q&A


Bonus Video: Editing


Bonus Video: Toms and Cymbals


Bonus Video: Snare Midi


Bonus Video: Kick Midi


Lesson Info

Constructing a Metal Drum Kit Part 1

All right, so we're going to talk about tweaking superior drummer or tweaking with superior drummer and basically we're going to show you all about lead control your extra mes layering, pitching, envelope control and we're going to put together two kits we have one of the examples from earlier that's a metal track that we're gonna work on now basically make a metal kit and encounter things I want to change about it and change him on the spot and show you guys what I would do and later on we'll do the same exact thing for rock right now I've got the metal track loaded with a very, very basic kit, just the avatar kit I'm not very basic it but it's the default um and let's start getting into this. You guys remember the tone pie from yesterday. It involved all the different aspect of recording an actual drum set well, when it comes to superior or anything in music, I think you need to look at each individual telling pie for whatever you're doing faras superior goes it consists of the mixer...

settings, the velocities, the actual parts, the layers meaning how many different snares are there and which snares your drum choice which is just like when we were choosing which drawings would go on the drum set yesterday you're tuning in pitch like I said earlier sometimes you want to lower drum sometimes you want to hire drums sometimes you recorded drums that are a certain pitch and you just need to match them that's a big part of it um you've got your mixer settings which uh which are your e q your compression all that stuff and then you've got your envelope which I showed you guys earlier she controls the attack and release and sustain of the way for I'm so it's not any one of those things that makes it sound great it's all of those things and if you pay attention to all of them your drawings with sound way better if you pay attention and none of them your drums will sound just like they do now so let's uh let's move on to this I don't know if you guys remember when I tricked you into thinking these were real drums not virtual now they're going to sound a little different. This is that metal track with uh avatar kit this is just what loads when you open superior you can hear it's not that sounds bad it's just not totally tweaked and not totally appropriate for the genre of music now there's in my opinion on a big elephant in the room as far as the first thing that I would change about this right off the bat would be the kick drum I think that kick drum and kick drums and medal should be mohr a tacky and more punchy now I could definitely a cue that but it's not quite exactly the sound I want so I know right off the bat I don't want this and I even know what I'm going to do so right here on this dropdown menu go to none and then good eckstrom it new well what do you know it's gone and then remember how I said used generic picture used generic picture kick is the instrument affecting right here I'm choosing where I want to bring the kick drum in from let's see what options do we have to go with metal machine but it's not mapped yet so right here I shall do this in the mapping paige see how I grab this articulation earlier put it there e I forgot to do you have to set a microphone so this is a misunderstood part of the process see right here says microphone assignment just like a real drum set you need to make it up there's no way around that so here are your available microphones for that what I did was I took kick drum right which was up here and moved it to new and then it created this blue guy flew guy's going to come upon the mixer now this is a to kick drum drum set so we have kick drum left as well going down to new that's going to come upon the mixer you see these two blue guy's x one kick drum right x one kick drum left do you guys understand what I just I did right here we have the available microphones you know I could mike the kick drum with the high hat mike but that's probably not a good idea. Um might do with the kick drum mic next you see it's not totally done yet that sounds like what I want and put that on a c one and replace thie reason I hit replaces because I didn't even want the old one that was there I just want the new one now it's really quiet you can see the mixer that is coming out sounds one hundred percent more like a metal kick drum now just for the sake of getting this to cut through a little more and use one of the on board accused boosted her around five ish, boosted it around a fish, cut it at around five ish and boost it at around one hundred now there's a reason I'm doing very very slightly q and that's because this is an easy ek kick it's already cued uh so if you add too much cut too much is going to start to sound a little weird it's just a little bit extra get ah sounds one hundred percent more metal all right now I think that snares okay as a starting point, but I'm not sure so I'm going to scroll through the available snares an avatar and let's just see what we've got maybe we can combine it with something else maybe just another snare to begin with, so try this slingerland seventy snare all right, check out this one. See what happens let it load offend that sounds closer to a snare that you would like. All right, sounds closer to snare that. Thank you. Yeah, well, yeah, this guy let it load first I think the other you think that I think the pitch could go off, layer it with a rim shot? Yeah, I don't think it's quite ring enough no way we're I'm we're going to do this, not see when you're mixing and making sounds you're not always doing it for yourself, you're doing it for a client. So we're going to pretend that finn's my client right now and what that that's what I was about to do and so we're going to raise five hundred right there because that makes snare that brings out that nasty hunky ring you khun solo it just like what I feel like it's not this snare in and of itself isn't ringing enough like I think we need to bring in more of a trash can snare on top of it and maybe you're right maybe it's a rim shot winning toe layer but I think that we need to just add a whole new snare onto that no no okay, I was waiting for it all right let's see here and that was force of habit I flip between the pro tools mixer and the pro tools that window I really should just gone back to construct so I just showed you guys how to replace drum entirely I didn't like the old kick I wanted the new kick I just replaced it now what we're gonna do is we're going to join a new snare on top of this stand our existence noose snare is kind of like what I think finn would want but not totally there yet so let's see? So it goto eckstrom and I hit new and here we go new extra men see it's highlighted with blue that man's that's what we're on a switch I'm gonna pick drunk it from hell is an easy acts to bring in and I believe there's a really ring the snare in there I don't remember go back to snare yeah you're pretty ringing so don't forget to mike it this is going to bring up channels on the mixer put snare drum bottom as well if you want I d'oh you see right here these blue channels are the extra arms so let's see if you got a mapping there's your room shot all right, so we're gonna put a put a rim shot on that I think that c one let's see what's our normal or normal snare no, no, so c two is our center center main is that that's? What? I'm going to layer it on top of a rim shot on top of the pre existing snare and see this dialogue came up and asked me out on a joint or replace I want to join that means they're both going to be playing at the same time well, we're a little closer, but what else could we do to it to get it where we want thinking the mixer we might want to compress it'll all right now since I'm building the kit uh I'm doing stuff within superior because it's easier and it's faster, right? I think that being being efficient is important and so what I would do first is work within superior don't be routing things out because you don't really know how big your drums that's going to be yet you don't know how many drums you're going toe add, you don't know what channels you're going to join you don't know what's going to go where yet so I'm just working within superior and a lot of these changes like the one I made to the kick right here I mean to the snare like I might not keep this exactly like this and I might do this on an s s l q but I think it sounds alright here some might keep it there's no, no telling but the reason that I'm doing everything within superior now because I don't know yet what my route and would be and I won't know that until we're done constructing the kids so this is kind of you're just using this kind of is your sketch pad to figure out however you can get totally finished results with it too, so once it gets down to total mix face that's when I would decide am I going to keep this secure? Not am I goingto have the same curve with a different chick you like? We'll just have to see but yeah, but first just start everything within superior that's what's cool is you get all these plug ins, so even if you're not going to use them, you can simulate what you're going to use but lots of the time you will and abusing them because they sound good all right, so let's take a look at finn snare you need to sound more explosive, make it nasty, make the release really fast attack kind of medium threshold pretty low finn what else would you want done to this snare just right off the bat? If you were if you were my client well, you have more layers to it. I would like to hear it maybe just get a little bit more ah here like the resonance of it a little bit more like on suicide silence the cleansing how you can really hear like every bit of the drum ringing out in the shell if that makes sense okay, so I think right now we've got good good attack from that one. Ah well more body from that one we need one that just rings though, right? One that's going to just like penetrate the mix more so with its ring so let's uh add one more snare on top of that so I goto eckstrom again new here we go you see it's highlighted blue and of your curious about how to do that control click selecting snare that's the instrument I wanted to be and, uh I want to check these drunk it from hell snares some more to see there's another want a layer on top of that, I seem to remember that there was a really good one, but I might have a problem with microphone selection. So what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna pick something else let's see if there's something ringy in a rock warehouse well, you're looking well, you're looking for that real quick, so right now you have, uh you have three layers on the snare yes, yes and on a typical production audio hammer you could have four five, six seven eight nine ten eleven, twelve sure yeah because you'll have your natural snare drum top natural snare dumb bottom our proprietary samples which you will use anywhere from three to five and then we'll start running superior samples to because they sound good. I mean it it gets up there for sure. So I'm going to cap this off with three layers for in the interest of time, but in reality I would probably add a few more this is keeping in mind that I'm also going to be adding my own samples on top of this tomorrow so I hope that answers the question now you can hear I picked it and stx near pretty raw let's see what we have drop down menu I know the ludwig so we really love let's see what this five by fourteen sounds like it's pretty ringing. Yeah, maybe that'll be the one I just want to see what else there is real quick that that might be the one no specifically looking for ring low tune doesn't sound like it's gonna be the one may be there a ring on it see so the graduate versus so good lesson there try everything so you never know what's gonna work yeah being the opposite of what you think oftentimes I'll think that something is not gonna work based on what's written and try and it's like well that worked uh no rules I rang you right there. So which do you prefer this one the gretch gradual attuned or the local tree that how you pronounce it which one would you pick uh you don't have toe I have to hear in the mix but I think the second one that you have in there now this one or the second was the gretch which is that one and here's the one that I just had I think, uh I think the oak tree but again you have to hear it makes sure there's some pretty similar so okay, well, being that this is an stx nair I definitely have to do stuff to it that that will be extreme to bring that out so let's uh let's make sure that it's going that it's mapped first of all see what the room shot sounds like now let's stay with center hit because that's going to get us more ring we've already got a rim shot in there anyways and I gotta join it. See, when you play here you get the individual drum when you play here on the keyboard you get it everything that's layered in and you can control your velocities hear what it sounds like now this is important and going to deviate really quickly and talk about the velocity function right here because this could be useful now one of the things I talked about in the easy drummer course is that variation and velocity is one of the most important factors getting a drum programme a programme drum to sound real now one thing that happens with real snares is that as their hit harder they take on different tones go start I'm sure you guys notice yesterday when sean was giving us the samples when he was hitting really hard so there was all this about body and low end and sometimes when you're working with samples ah you have to add new samples are to simulate that effect sometimes you just want a new drum so right here you can see that there's these velocities zero and one twenty seven for the snare center, that guy for that room shot zero to one twenty seven a snare center zero to one twenty seven now what this means is that these are going to be playing the whole time no matter what the velocity is these three snares will be playing now what if I want only the rim shot to be on one fifteen through one twenty cent velocity only in the hardest spots like what if you don't want rim shots on fills that are going to be quieter in a dynamic so all right let's say one ten to one twenty seven the hard hits where we want the room shot so click right there and her one ten and if you'll notice when I get to one ten, the rim shot kicks in and look right here that's your that's the number check out what happens when I get to one ten now I think one ten may have been a little too early for that, so let's, try one twenty now that ring the ring, the snare because I know what I'm about to do to it. I I know that the ring, the snare I think I only want it on the hard hits a cz well, because do you really want all that ring on snare fills? Probably not and drummers don't play is hard, so I'm going to say on this one one ten through on twenty seven and knows notice I have not done what I'm going to do to it yet as faras compression and q okay, so I think we've pretty set on how that works now back to the mixer should back to construct what I need to do right now is a sign of microphone now here you're available mike's where we talked about available microphones, the most important thing for you guys to know is that the dark green ones or the recommended ones if we were doing a snare drum eckstrom check it out the dark green ones are for a snare drum top snare drum bottom a snare drum come so that's what I'm gonna mike up so drag it down and you gives you the blue guy that corresponds to the mixer channel snare drum bottom give you the new guy snare drum comp there's a lot of snare channels now probably pretty good okay, now it should come out the mixer and here they are so hit play in months mess with me just for now I don't want to hear any guitars that's already compress a little you've got some presets here too by the way that they give you let's see what the shotgun preset does yeah and what's cool about these is that they give them to you specific to the drug one wait well be nice if we weren't at the end of the song now I know finn said he wanted a little bit more body to come out of the snare so I'm going to take you in a little more body and knows this is an s t x so I do need a cue some drop them is a little find where it gets bigger seems around two hundred ish now this is something that could take a long time so I'm going to move on in the second let's see where we're at snare drums too loud to spring it down there's so many snare channels now that the snare drum was overbearing so bring it down to a more normal level yeah you know what helps base now I still think that the snare drums a little loud so you could just bring it down a little more that's the thing that happens when you make overbearingly ringing snares is they get too loud in a hurry all right now one thing I did not mess with in regards to this I want to see which one would be the right one to show this on I did not mess with the picture of the envelope of this I want to see it maybe this one this is the ring the one so I see if maybe maybe we can make this ring longer so you wouldn't do that via the envelope menu or box turn it on we'll see e solo it out in the mixer so we hear exactly what's happening to it so what I'm trying to do is have a very strong attack upfront and have it ring for awhile this is as long as it will ring for notice while everything is louder if I go like that the attack is louder now everything's louder now let's see maybe an idea would be tio have this b ring on lee on the snare so what I'm doing is I'm getting rid of the attack completely. Then I'm going to compress the hell out of the actual ring. Wait, also the transient designer you can affect the sustain. All right? So it's a question for you, for your perspective, you know, there's a few different ways of doing all these things, so absolutely want to effect the attack and decay. You know, you could do it to the envelope window into their superiors. Transient designer or compressor. You can route it to your dog and, uh, you know, do it there with other plug ins. Is there a best practice for that? You know, is there any concern over kind of having, you know, three different things affecting the sound in three different places and getting, you know, all messed up? Well, I thought that one of the things that lots of the better mixers do is they do have lots of different something's happening to a sound at once, like, for instance, if you're compressing a snare drum and you want six d b of of gain reduction, lots of the better guys will get to tv from ah compressor that's on the snare than to tv more from the drum bus or the snare bus than to tv more from the or one davey from the drum bus, and then finally from the master compressor that's I think that getting a little bit here and a little bit there and a little bit from everywhere is, uh is really the way to go to get this to sound the best unless if you just want the character of one plug in which sometimes you might so again okay, so maybe it's a little bit more complicated but you know it's that accumulation of subtleties thing again maybe yeah, like usually one plug in alone is not capable of getting you the sound you want so you have to be careful not to kill the sound with that one plugin if what you want is a combination like a tone pie of different it will take a toll on five different plug ins if you slam it with compression on with like six to ten d b of gain reduction, you really don't have much left for other plug ins, so as faras workflow goes, you have to keep in mind that you're going to probably end up using multiple things and be ready teo delete the ones you're not using so you save your computer cool all right, another one of those things that came up in the chat rooms just wanna clear cool I'm happy to answer any of this now I don't really like the way you like it see I don't personally like it, but we're pretending that that I'm mixing for clients who wanted toe ring. See, that ring would kill me. It would drive me insane. I'm liking it. You're like in the ring? Yeah. There we go. We're getting there. I'm here to please you. Well, we can. Ah, we can keep going on it tomorrow. When I'm mixing, I feel like I should probably move on to some more features of superior. But, um, when you're mixing, you should definitely aim to make your client's happy. So I just showed you, like, three different ways to raise the ring within superior. Now, when it comes down the way you've been saying the whole time, which is there's, not necessarily a this is the right answer and say, what sound are you going for, what's? The final intent. Exactly. That's what's, right, exactly. And whether or not the people that you're doing it for like, it that's also what's important. You have to ask yourself, are you mixing this for yourself? For your mixing this for someone else? Right now? I just decided that landon and finn are my clients, not ville, because you probably hate the way it sounds. Honestly, I kind of hate it too, but but that's all right, here to please, and I definitely think that every mixer should adopt that mentality of here to please their client there's very very few guys who can just steamroll their clients and do their own thing and get away with it you have to be one of the very, very best top top top top in the world and most of you guys aren't right now well, you know, another thing is there's things that maybe you think you hate you've told yourself you hate but maybe you maybe wouldn't hate him if you try and there's a few things I've don't like I I always I convinced myself that I hated the sound of fifty one fifty and I like director fires well, turns out, you know, after trying it actually like fifty in fifties and all the time I told myself I hated it, it was just me being stubborn and not trying it yeah, I I agreed well, it goes back tio not having an heir mind when recording you have to be open to anything there's been so many times where the amp, for instance, that I thought wasn't going to work was the aunt that ended of working that I've just taken the approach. Now that unless I know that for instance something is dead like that head on that drum is completely dead I'm pretty much open to trying almost anything at least giving it a shot and it doesn't work, then we'll ditch it

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Day One Presentation.pdf
Day Three Presentation.pdf
Day Two Presentation.pdf
Johns QuicKeys Shortcuts.qkmx
Sample Input List.docx

Ratings and Reviews

El Bulbo Studio

This class will give you confidence when tracking drums. Eyal's interaction with the drummer will help you communicate better with the artist to get the best performance and tone. The added bonus on drum replacement is very valuable and will improve your mixes.

a Creativelive Student

My drum sound has improved by 150% and counting. I'm grateful that Eyal would share this information with us. Not every technique is for every situation, but they all work. It's up to you to have the vision and to use the right tools for the job. Thank you guys!!

Michael Nolasco

To the guy that said buyer beware: this is an advanced production class, it's not meant for beginners who are learning to mic up a kit. I'm a beginner, but i'm using superior drummer, so this class was perfect for me to learn how to process drums post recording. I refer to it constantly. The editing videos are also prime information.

Student Work