Ray Hearne Haken

Prog drum­mer en­lists Adam Get­good for added heav­i­ness on the band’s fifth stu­dio al­bum

Rhythm - - BEAT! -

Why did the band go for a heav­ier sound on Vec­tor?

“It was a con­scious de­ci­sion even be­fore we wrote any mu­sic. It seems like most of the band was quite keen to make a heav­ier al­bum. Maybe it’s just be­cause we wanted to ac­cess more of a me­tal au­di­ence.”

How did you get your drum sound?

“We were helped by get­ting Adam ‘Nolly’ Get­good in­volved. He’s a bit of a leader in the mod­ern me­tal sound – the way he pro­duces drums in par­tic­u­lar. To be quite hon­est, Adam had such an im­pact, it was re­ally nice to have some­one out­side of the band with an ap­proach and an idea in mind for the sound that he wanted.

I used a new kit I just re­ceived from Na­tal be­fore do­ing the al­bum. The tun­ing was de­ter­mined by Adam. One of the things he asked was, what is the over­all key of the al­bum? Be­ing a me­tal band, most of our mu­sic is in D or E, with one ex­cep­tion on this al­bum – there’s a song in E flat. He came up with a tun­ing scheme based on the tonal­ity of the al­bum, which was some­thing I would never have thought of my­self.

“Then he brought along a Bell Brass snare drum, this ab­so­lute tank of a drum, tuned in E, and an­other one tuned in E flat. I felt more than pre­pared, and con­fi­dent that we were go­ing to get the ul­ti­mate drum sound that re­ally suited the mu­sic.”

How do you cre­ate your drum parts?

“We’re tweak­ing the ar­range­ment, the struc­ture of each song right up to the mo­ment that we ac­tu­ally record the al­bum. It’s dif­fi­cult to fi­nalise a drum part un­til I’m sure that we’ve got the ar­range­ment we want.

“I’ve com­posed my own drum parts al­most note for note be­fore I record them, not leav­ing much to chance as far as no­tat­ing al­most ev­ery fill, so that each note that I play com­ple­ments what­ever else is go­ing on mu­si­cally.”

Do you go for full takes in the stu­dio?

“I write in quite a de­mand­ing way for my­self. I’m con­stantly try­ing to push my abil­i­ties, so it’s re­ally dif­fi­cult to get it to that stage when we’re record­ing. These days tech­nol­ogy re­ally does help us out in that sense. We can record sec­tion by sec­tion, or we can break it down into smaller bits if we need to.

“It’s tricky with this mu­sic be­cause it’s so highly scru­ti­nised, and it’s got this as­so­ci­a­tion with the band be­ing vir­tu­osic so that we feel like we have to nail ev­ery sin­gle note – and if there are any mis­takes, peo­ple will spot that.

“It’s a tough one. We want to make the al­bum sound real, not ar­ti­fi­cial – but at the same time we want to make it sound ex­actly how we want it to, and then worry about try­ing to play it live later.”

Out now Vec­tor Haken

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