Should You Be Concerned If You Don’t Have Haters? If you’re a fan of sample replacement, you can start switching out the kick and the snare for something more powerful. You can go nuts trying to add samples that match up with the kick and snare but that’s a bit beyond what I’ll be talking about today. Download this 40-minute workshop by Matthew Weiss, now for FREE! If the drums are sounding really good to you already then you might not even need much processing here. Achieve Professional Drum Recordings Using A Minimalistic Setup. *Spam sucks and I will not share your email with anyone. The following is an excerpt from the Drum Mix Toolkit. When a Rock person asks for “huge,” I think “big sense of space,” “bombastic feeling,” “full but open.” They are contextually very different. Some of it might be overtones hopping off the drums themselves, but a good portion of it is: room tone. If you leave the kick drum sounding wrong, the whole foundation of the song will lose its footing. Recording Heavy Drums. I talk a lot about how to get a good sounding kick drum inside my Drum Mix Toolkit. If you don’t know all the tools you have at your disposal, I’ve put together a package that includes all the tricks and techniques I’ve learned in the last decade of mixing drums. Mixing drums is a selective process, meaning that individual elements of the drum-kit only need specific frequency ranges. With a nice room mic picking up the complete kit we can try a few different techniques. That said, there are a few guidelines you can follow to get a steadier kick drum sound. Get every element to sound as good as possible and then try to mold them together to make them sound like a complete whole. I’d rather have a concrete basement than a large iso. Partner in crime with the kick drum, the snare drum is the other defining rhythmic factor to the song. These tips are broken down by instrument and help you fix your frequency problems with simple solutions that you can use right away. For more on mixing drums, check out this playlist of free drum mixing tutorials. But if you don’t have a basement, church or warehouse at your disposal, that’s ok. There’s a few tricks to liven up your drum room. Please try again. If I’m really compressing my overheads and bringing out the sustain/rounding out the attack, I want to bring my attack back with the close mics. If you feel there isn’t enough bass to your kick drum, a low shelving boost around 80 – 100 Hz normally does the trick. I usually start with a ratio of 4:1 or 6:1 and lower the threshold down until I’m compressing around six dBs. So those are my big tips on big drums — in the live drum kit context. In this video I show how I go about getting a heavy rock sound for my drums using superior drummer 3 and a few plugins. If you want some of my best advice to get killer drum mixes from my decade of experience mixing drums, check out the Drum Mix Tools here. It’ll make it easier and more efficient to mix later on. By slowing down my compression attack and getting that “hard rock” sound on my snare/kick, all that punch immediately comes back when I blend the close mics in. Compression can be used to effectively bring up the sustain of your room capture and overheads. How to Use Bus Processing and Parallel Compression to Glue Your Drum Sound Together, How to Blend Multiple Reverbs Together in Your Drum Mix, Making the Drums Sound Larger than Life, How to Fit the Kick Drum and Bass Guitar Together in the Low End, How to Take Full Advantage of the Phase Relationship Between Your Tracks to Make Every Track Sound Tighter, What Processing to Use When You Don’t Have Drum Replacement or Transient Designers at Your Disposal, Where to EQ Drums to Get Rid of Boxiness, Muddiness, and Harshness, Your 6 Step Process for Using Drum Compression for Tighter Drums, A Behind the Scenes Look at How the Ratio of Your Compressor Affects Your Drum Sound, How to Use Multi-Band Compression for a Tighter, Yet MORE Dynamic Drum Sound, How to Use Gates to Get a Cleaner Drum Sound, Why You Should Use Analog Summing and Saturation to Add More Warmth and Depth to Your Drums, Why Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumours” is the Reason I Use This One Plug-in on ALL My Mixes, The Difference Between a Drastic and Subtle Overhead EQ (And When to Choose Which), Adding Space to Your Drum Mix Without Making Your Drums Sound Distant, How to Use Gated Reverbs Without Sounding Like You’re an 80’s Cover Band. The only solid piece of advice I can give you for mixing drums is to experiment with all the tools you have on hand. If you're going to be using samples to replace or reinforce your drum tracks, now is the time to add them (see 'Drum Samples In Metal Mixing' box). EQ and Compression are the first processors for any mix session. We’ll talk about that in more detail later. So, ok, let’s get to it … five tips for getting huge sounding drums. Fear not the mud my friends. At this point, you should have a pretty killer drum sound, but it might be sounding a bit dry. Get 65% Off Mix Essentials Now. This is a bit speculative so no dogma here, just experiment with this advice in mind. I try to time the release in time with the beat so that the compressor has stopped compressing before the next hit. Since the drum kit generally requires a combination of several different microphones it can give you multiple options (or headaches!) The whole process was confusing to me, there were just so many variables! If I’m using a fast attack and medium release compression on the overheads, I’m going to get that splashy rounded sound. this playlist of free drum mixing tutorials, 4 Parallel Processing Techniques for Drums in a Mix, 4 Tips for Mixing Home-Recorded Drums (Without Using Samples), Black Friday is On! Does the drummer play the toms a lot or barely do a fill? There’s no reason to EQ the top end and notch out the same room tone on every single channel if I can just do it on the drum buss. And the benefits of cutting out those mud tones might not be nearly as noticeable. You can make your drums sound good in so many different ways depending on how you use your EQ, compression and other mixing processors. There was an error submitting your subscription. He helps musicians and producers turn amateur demos into professionally produced records they can be proud to release. By focusing on the overheads you can get a roomier sound, but if you want a close in-your-face drum sound, you would rather use the overheads as complementary to the rest of the drums, mainly using them to accent the cymbal sounds. I tend to mix all the drums first, move onto guitars, bass, then vocals. In this particular record I felt that we were going for a Rock influenced kind of sound. Conversely if I’m making the overheads really punchy I want to bring the fatness back with the close mics. You can create an entirely different snare sound by just applying an interesting reverb to it. Snare compression is perhaps one of the most argued about subjects in audio production. How To Get a Powerful Tom Sound in 3 Easy Steps, Give Me Six Weeks And You'll Never Doubt Your Mixing Skills Again, Here's My Perfect Solution for Taming Your Low-end, 3 Things You Must Do for Better Vocal Recordings, Why Persistence is More Important Than Talent in Music. That’s where the mud tends to show up. When mixing drums like toms, sometimes you need to finely cut a few adjacent frequencies instead of scooping out a big portion of the frequency spectrum. I would spend the majority of my tracking time getting these things right, and the majority of the mix getting them right as well. The first installment of "How to mix Heavy Drums" Sign up for the SMG newsletter here! It’s called the Drum Mix Toolkit, and it’s designed to transform your drums from weak and thin to powerful and punchy. If you press it and the drums suddenly become thicker then you’ll know there were some polarity problems in your tracks. If you have any tips and techniques, feel free to share them in the comment section below!