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Ebook: Recording Aggressive Drums

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Ebook: Recording Aggressive Drums

Postby soulgreed returns » Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:55 am

First up, apologies to admin if we're not meant to put book reviews here; I didn't see any others but I thought this was a useful/relevant item.

It’s a funny thing to me that metal has become one of the most over produced genres of music today; there’s not much mainstream recognition for the genre outside of the Nordic countries and hence not much in the way of “educational” material, so I thought it would be worth putting this up here for anyone that might be interested.
The book is entitled “Recording Aggressive Drums”, by a Finnish producer called Santeri Salmi. I’ve had the pleasure of having some projects mixed by one of his colleagues, and although he might not be well known, he definitely knows his stuff.

The book is available here as a pdf ebook :

This book is focussed on recording drums for metal; it deals with the tight over produced sounds used in death metal, metalcore etc. and also more natural or raw sounds for slower styles. A certain level of knowledge is assumed so it would really suit those who already have an understanding of standard drum recording and are struggling to achieve a drum recording that works for modern metal styles. To me, this is an excellent book that brings together the whole process of drum recording, and would probably be a good complement to the SOS extreme metal tutorials. I haven’t seen many other equivalent guides out there but could have missed them. Actually I think “mixing with your mind” by Michael Stavrou is quite a complementary read because it has a similar philosophy, although Recording Aggressive Drums is much more methodical and detailed to the specific subject of metal drums.

Anyway, the publishing quality of the ebook is very good with clear language and explanatory diagrams where necessary. Santeri structures the book well, starting off with the drums in the room at source, going through every detail of the kit and finally finishing with tips for mixing the final recording to allow the other instruments to be recorded (i.e. mixing for overdubbing, not a full mixing guide, but still quite in depth).

The methods described in the book deal with both techniques and equipment choices, so can be applied to any budget provided you already have some basic recording gear, but it’s also useful for those with gear list trying to figure out the weak link in their current setup. On the one hand he discusses choices of drums, microphones and outboard, and on the other we have some discussion of tuning, placement, different strategies for different end results, headphone mixes and tempo mapping/click tracks, gain staging, dynamics and phase coherency etc. If I had one criticism it would be that some audio samples would be useful but given the book isn’t really a “beginners guide to recording” most of the wordy explanations do the job if you’ve been through the process before and understand the problems involved.

Overall, the attention to detail is incredible; it’s great to have a drum guide that details with small things like cymbal thickness, drum stick choice, size and material of each drum, phase issues, tuning, compression, session organisation etc. but manages to keep the bigger picture in perspective throughout. I can’t think of any aspect that isn’t covered, and unlike with so many ebooks, I didn’t ever find myself thinking “well that’s b***dy obvious, I could have written this myself!” There are some genuinely useful and original ideas here. It’s now up as a pay what you like download so value for money gets top marks as well.
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Re: Ebook: Recording Aggressive Drums

Postby Forum Admin » Mon Apr 13, 2015 10:26 am

Thanks for the review and link.

It gives me an opportunity to link to the SOS Extreme Metal production articles and videos from 2009. :)

SOS Guide To Extreme Metal Production: Part 1

SOS Guide To Extreme Metal Production: Part 2

SOS Guide To Extreme Metal Production: Videos
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Re: Ebook: Recording Aggressive Drums

Postby soulgreed returns » Mon Apr 13, 2015 10:44 am

You're welcome. I actually forgot to mention in the review, there is a very good bibliography section in the ebook that lists the SOS series :)
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