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Old 25th March 2013
Michael Beinhorn
fexurbis's Avatar

There are a few different criteria which are applicable (to me) in this case, but I think foremost is probably confidence. Drums are the foundational aspect of any recording (even if they are added later), therefore, it is reassuring to have a drummer who "knows" he can play the songs with authority. Having this feeling- this awareness, puts weight and conviction behind a drummer's performance. A drummer who is not competent (or any other musician) generally comes into a recording prepared to fail. They actually exude defeat or an air of not wanting to try as hard as possible and do a great job.

The rest is a often a matter of preference. I tend to like drummers who can play with a groove, hit hard (but accurately) and keep decent time. I'm not fond of drummers who play like machines and whose performances line up perfectly with a click. None of this matters as much if a band's drummer comes into a recording with the intent to do an amazing job and ...they do it.

Recording is about making a document of something (which can be subjective and not always taken literally)- where a group of creative people were at in one point in lives or the result of what they did together, but also about everyone in the process leaving a piece of themselves behind. A great drummer will come in and do this- whether he plays in the band or is a replacement.