June 25, 2013

Adding Weight To Kick Drums

The kick of a drum is really dictated by what type of mallet is used to strike the drum’s head.  On a standard drum pedal, it is usually made out of soft materials which give a decent sounding report – but they are usually built so that the attack is not as loud as the overall feeling of the note.  This is because the bass note itself can be heard underneath other elements of the song.  Some drum pedals allow you to switch the material to something harder, like plastic, which is known for its loud report on attack.  While not as common, it serves a purpose – to bring attention to the sound of the kick.

Producers commonly struggle with ways to make their kicks louder in their synthesized drum beats.  Using the same type of tactic, they can play with the EQ of a note, and place more attention on the lower end rather than the high end.  Conversely, they can also focus on taking the low bass out of the beat while keeping the attack high and apparent.  Other methods also include adding distortion to the instrument or using some sort of compression tool to bring out a specific part of the note.