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Thread: Best drum recordings?

  1. #1
    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Best drum recordings?

    Lately I've been searching for good drum recordings, and finding them curiously rare. Dave Weckl's band is really well recorded, as is Steve Smith's Vital Information -- but neither features the drums quite as much as I'd like(!). Curt Cress Clan is a monster showcase for bass + drums, but the recording is 39 years old now and shows its age. Dave Brubeck's "Time Out" and "Time Further Out" (1959 & 1961 respectively) are even older, but surprisingly Joe Morello's drum recordings are actually better than almost anything contemporary I've heard (less compression!) I have the Sheffield Labs "Track Record / Drum Record" which are decent-enough recordings, but they're just demo recordings -- not really meant for listening. Esbjörn Svensson Trio (E.S.T.) has some lovely recording of piano, upright bass & drums but not really the driving dynamic powerhouse drumming I'm seeking.

    Tony Williams? Art Blakey? Max Roach? Where should I be looking?

  2. #2
    That's pretty subjective... I really like Joe's Garage- processed and crisp but natural. The drums on Breakfast In America are some of the best pop drums I think I've ever heard but I gather you want something more natural... All the Flim and The B.B.s direct to disk records sounded flippin' phenomenal. Try out Tricycle.

    Believe it or not, I love the drums on Toys In The Attic by Aerosmith.

  3. #3
    For 'rock' drums, pretty much anything recorded by Steve Albini.

    I can often recognise an Albini recording within seconds from the drum sound. I gather a lot of it is due to the room at Electrical Audio or more specifically the type of tiles on the wall. Either way that guy knows how to get an amazing drum sound.
    I love his unfussy production. It wouldn't work for every band, it's almost the opposite of how I work but for a particular kind of live sounding recording it can't be beaten.
    Last edited by Kavus Torabi; 07-30-2014 at 01:40 PM.

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    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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    Bruford & Moraz's first ?

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    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kavus Torabi View Post
    Pretty much anything recorded by Steve Albini.
    Such as?

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    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Udi Koomran View Post
    Led Zeppelin
    Loud but not very naturalistic.

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    Member Emeritus (A.M.P.) rcarlberg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeuhlmate View Post
    Bruford & Moraz's first ?
    Hmmm, that & "Flags." Good thought -- must revisit!

  9. #9
    Trilok Gurtu - Usfret

    Nik Bartch's Ronin Holon

  10. #10
    Member Zeuhlmate's Avatar
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    ECM has also done some nice ones.
    Like Gateway http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gateway...teway_album%29

  11. #11
    Billy Cobham - Spectrum
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  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by rcarlberg View Post
    Such as?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Albini_discography

    One of my favourite albums recorded by him is Don Caballero's American Don.
    As well as an enormous and beautiful drum sound, drummer Damon Che is extraordinary, as is the album itself.

  13. #13
    Not really an answer to your request for naturalistic sounds, but I personally have a bit of a fetish for drums recorded at the Power Station by Bob Clearmountain. By his own admission very little was done with those drum recordings, they mostly used the natural ambience of the rather terrific room. So there's both a naturalness to the sound but also a larger than life character. The drums on Bowie's "Let's Dance" - the album, not just the song - are a good example. Powerful, tight, natural and spacious - without having the "all the reverb to the snare" sound of many 80s records.

  14. #14
    Pikachupacabra spellbound's Avatar
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    I have a double CD entitled Drum Workshop 30th Anniversary Collection. I have not heard of all the drummers included on the album (you would recognize the names of several, including some prog notables), but the drums are well recorded. And it is not just percussion tracks, although drums are featured; there are other instruments, and all drummers are represented on complete songs. I don't know if you can find this recording, as it is marked Not For Sale-For Promotional Use Only, but I will give you the information on the back panel, and maybe you can track it down: 2002 Drum Workshop, Inc. All Rights Reserved. www.dwdrums.com
    Can this be the swan song? The final elbow?

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    Member Lebofsky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kavus Torabi View Post
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Albini_discography

    One of my favourite albums recorded by him is Don Caballero's American Don.
    As well as an enormous and beautiful drum sound, drummer Damon Che is extraordinary, as is the album itself.
    I concur with the Steve Albini sentiment. I absolutely adore all the Shellac 7"s and albums. I secretly always wanted to arrange this song for miRthkon:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SX_VQ8Hw6tA

    - Matt

  16. #16
    It's not a secret any more, Matt.

    First time I've heard this tune. Wonderful.

    (That drum sound, though...I love it)

  17. #17
    Boo! walt's Avatar
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    Trilok Gurtu with John McLaughlin Trio(Kai Eckhardt-bass) live at Royal Festival Hall,on JMT released in 1990.Not only is Gurtu a monster drummer/percussionist, he's superbly recorded here.

    Knocked me out the first time i heard this cd,and still a great listen.
    "please do not understand me too quickly"-andre gide

  18. #18
    Boo! walt's Avatar
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    Just about any record engineered by Walter Quintus at Zerkall studio in Germany.Always high quality drum sonics(and every other instrument,as well).CMP records used Quintus' studio often.
    "please do not understand me too quickly"-andre gide

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    Member sergio's Avatar
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    Simon Phillips or Virgil Donati: creator/drummer/producer... Protocol II and In This Life are both benchmarks in material/production quality.

  22. #22
    I was gonig to suggest Simon Phillips. He has a knack for tuning and capturing a very lively drum sound. The recent recordings with Hiromi are very nice. Virgil's drum tone is a little flat in comparison I think.
    Last edited by Stickleback; 07-30-2014 at 07:03 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by calyx View Post
    Billy Cobham - Spectrum
    And Crosswinds as well.

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    This is super-subjective, but I'll mention my absolute favorite drum recording ever: Elvin Jones as captured by Rudy Van Gelder on the 1964 John Coltrane album 'Crescent'. Perhaps not what you're after? A more unusual (often disagreed with) favorite of mine is Henry Cow's 'Western Culture'. No, not "natural" sounding at all, but a great sound nonetheless. Also, Zappa's 'Hot Rats' has always stood out for me, as well as Yes' 'Fragile'. You'll probably get a zillion differing answers!

  25. #25
    Member sergio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stickleback View Post
    I was gonig to suggest Simon Phillips. He has a knack for tuning and capturing a very lively drum sound. The recent recordings with Hiromi are very nice. Virgil's drum tone is a little flat in comparison I think.
    Minnemann in Aristocrats is awesome too. I couldnt believe how flat he was recorded with S Wilson on Raven. Drums on all Nemo albums are pretty good, Leprous, Lizard, Quidam etc etc. On the contrary, production suffers on more intense stuff like Symphony X (altho J Rulo is awesome, eh!). that said, Haken are intense, but drums are quite clear. Strangely, but one of the best production I've heard was on Order Of Voices...

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