This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page . (Learn how and when to remove these template messages)(Learn how and when to remove this template message)
A blast beat is a drum beat that originated in hardcore punk and grindcore, and is often associated with certain styles of extreme metal, namely black metal and death metal,and occasionally in metalcore. In Adam MacGregor's definition, "the blast-beat generally comprises a repeated, sixteenth-note figure played at a very fast tempo, and divided uniformly among the bass drum, snare, and ride, crash, or hi-hat cymbal." Blast beats have been described by PopMatters contributor Whitney Strub as, "maniacal percussive explosions, less about rhythm per se than sheer sonic violence".
The 'original' or traditional blastbeat is a single-stroke roll played between your cymbal and snare, with your kick playing simultaneously with every cymbal hit.
Napalm Death is said to have coined the term,though this style of drumming had been used by others for its characteristically chaotic sound.
The English band Napalm Death coined the term "blast beat",though this style of drumming had previously been practiced by others. Daniel Ekeroth argues that the blast beat was first performed by the Swedish group Asocial on their 1982 demo. D.R.I. (1983, "No Sense"), Sepultura (1985, track 11, "Antichrist"), S.O.D. (1985, track 11, "Milk"), Sarcófago (1986, track 10, "Satanas"), and Repulsion also included the technique prior to Napalm Death's emergence. Rockdetector contributor Garry Sharpe-Young credits D.R.I.'s Eric Brecht as the first on their 1983 debut but credits Napalm Death with making it better known. AllMusic contributor Thom Jurek credits jazz drummer Tony Williams as the "true inventor of the blastbeat" in 1979. Prince prominently featured blast beats on many of his songs starting in the late 1970s.
There are instances of drummers incorporating blast beat patterns prior to the 1970s.[ examples needed ] Drummer Bill Ward of Black Sabbath can be seen playing a brief blast beat in a 1970 performance of "War Pigs." Additionally, drummer Carl Palmer of the progressive rock super-group Emerson, Lake & Palmer briefly used a blast beat in the band's 1970 instrumental "The Barbarian". King Crimson's "The Devil's Triangle" from their 1970 album In the Wake of Poseidon also features an early example of proto-blastbeats in the later half of the song. However, the blast beat as it is known today originated in the European hardcore and grindcore scenes in the 1980s. Contrary to popular belief, blast beats originated from punk and hardcore music, not metal music. In the UK punk and hardcore scene of the early 1980s there were many bands attempting to play as fast as possible. In 1985 emerging grindcore band Napalm Death replaced their former drummer Miles "Rat" Ratledge with Mick Harris, who brought to the band a whole new level of speed. Harris is credited with developing the term "blast beat", describing the fast notes played on the kick and snare. Harris started using the blast beat as a fundamental aspect of Napalm Death's early musical compositions. It was finally with Napalm Death's first full-length album Scum (1987) that blast beat started to evolve into a distinct musical expression of its own. Blast beats became popular in extreme music from the mid to late 1980s . The blast beat evolved into its modern form as it was developed in the American death metal and grindcore scene of the late 1980s and early 1990s. Pete Sandoval, drummer of Terrorizer (1986–1989) and later Morbid Angel (1984–2013), purportedly was the first to use blast beats in metronomic time (and not as arhythmic or non-metric white noise) and thus gave it a more useful musical characteristic for timekeeping.
Blast beats eventually appeared in commercially successful metal music, beginning with Fear Factory's album Demanufacture (1995) and Slipknot's album Iowa (2001).
A blast beat is traditionally played as an alternating single-stroke roll broken up between the kick drum and the snare drum. Blast beats are counted in 32nd or 16th notes. In a modern musical context blast beats are usually regarded as such when played at a minimum of above 90 beats per minute 32nd notes, or 180 bpm 16th notes.Early blast beats were generally quite slow and less precise compared to today's standards. Nowadays, a blast beat is normally played from 180 bpm 16th notes up to such high tempos as in the range of 250-280 bpm 16th notes (or even higher). There is also the "gravity blast", not to be confused with the one-handed gravity roll (see below). This technique uses the rim of the snare drum as a fulcrum, allowing two snare hits with one downward motion (essentially doing the work of two hands with only one).
Typical blast beats consist of 8th-note patterns between both the bass and snare drum alternately, with the hi-hat or the ride synced. Variations exist such as displacing hi-hat/ride, snare and bass drum hits and/or using other cymbals such as splashes, crashes, chinas and even tambourines for accenting, for example when using odd time or playing progressively. While playing 8th or 8th note triplets some drummers choose to play in sync with one foot while others split the 8th notes between both feet. In blast beats in general, the notes on the kick drum can be played either with one foot only or by alternating both feet, referred to as a "two-foot" or "economy" blast.
As blast beats have evolved, different types and interpretations have emerged. There are four main variations of the blast beat: the traditional blast, the bomb blast, the hammer blast and the freehand blast.
The traditional blast beat is a single-stroke roll alternating between the snare drum and kick drum. The ride hand is usually playing in unison with the kick drum.The traditional blast beat is structurally very similar to the skank beat, which can be regarded as a predecessor and a half time variation of the traditional blast beat. The skank beat originated in the early punk and thrash metal scene as a drum beat for extreme music. The skank beat is similar to the blast beat as it alternates between the kick and the snare, with the difference that the ride hand plays notes in unison with both kick and snare. A skank beat is in other words a sped up 2/4 rock or polka beat. In the US the skank beat was early on also referred to as the "Slayer" or "thrash" beat due to its popularity among thrash metal bands such as Slayer.
The bomb blast is essentially a combination of blast beat and double bass drumming. When measured in 16th notes a bomb blast consists of 8th notes on the snare played above a 16th notes kick drum line. Most drummers play this beat by leading with the snare, while the traditional blast beat is usually led with the kick. The bomb blast became popular among 1990s death metal bands such as Cannibal Corpse, which is why the bomb blast is also referred to as the "Cannibal" blast.
The hammer blast is played with the kick and snare in unison. Instead of playing 8th notes kick and snare in alternation and thus creating a 16th notes roll, the hammer blast is played as a straight 8th notes roll on the kick and snare simultaneously. The advantage of the hammer blast is that only one fast hand is needed, which usually is the drummer's leading hand (right for right-handed and left for left-handed). If the weaker hand can't keep up with the 8th notes snare line, it can play quarter notes. The kick drum line can be played with one foot as well as a two-footed economy blast. When played at an extremely fast tempo, the hammer blast can be referred to as a "hyper blast". The hammer blast became popular in death metal music of the early 1990s.
The freehand blast, also known as the gravity blast, utilizes the gravity roll technique in a blast beat context. Of all the main blast beat variations, this one is the most recent to have emerged. The snare line is played as a 16th notes single stroke roll, also known as a gravity roll or single handed roll. The roll is played with an up and down motion in which you push and pull the drumstick on and off the snare drum. By using the snare rim as a fulcrum you create a stroke each time you push and pull the drumstick up and down. In this way, the player can double the output of notes to match the amount of notes produced by two feet on the bass drum. It usually presents similarly to a unison hammer blast, but at double the tempo of what would be possible with normal techniques. One drawback is that this blast has a limited volume. The concept behind the gravity roll is not new, but is noted for being brought into modern music by drummer Johhny Rabb. Rabb has published the book The Official Freehand Technique, which covers the gravity roll technique.The term "gravity roll" or "gravity blast," while common and accepted usage, is less correct than "freehand roll" or "fulcrum roll" in that the technique does not rely on gravity and can be played sideways, inverted, or in a zero gravity environment. A combination of the gravity blast and the bomb blast (i.e. both the kick and the snare is playing 16th notes in unison) is called a gravity bomb.
Examples of the four main blast beat variations in drum tab:
C- x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-| C- x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-| C- x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-| C- x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-| S- o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-| S- -o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o| S- o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-| S- oooooooooooooooo| B- o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-| B- o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-| B- oooooooooooooooo| B- o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-|
The first example is a hammer blast. The second example shows a traditional blast beat - essentially a skank beat played at a high tempo (this particular one leads with the bass drum, but the snare can lead as well). Example #3 shows a blast beat with double bass, known as a bomb blast. Example #4 illustrates a freehand blast, also known as a gravity blast.
Grindcore is an extreme fusion genre of heavy metal and hardcore punk that originated in the mid-1980s, drawing inspiration from abrasive-sounding musical styles, such as: thrashcore, crust punk, hardcore punk, extreme metal, and industrial. Grindcore is characterized by a noise-filled sound that uses heavily distorted, down-tuned guitars, grinding overdriven bass, high speed tempo, blast beats, and vocals which consist of growls and high-pitched shrieks. Early groups like Napalm Death are credited with laying the groundwork for the style. It is most prevalent today in North America and Europe, with popular contributors such as Brutal Truth and Nasum. Lyrical themes range from a primary focus on social and political concerns, to gory subject matter and black humor.
A hi-hat is a combination of two cymbals and a pedal, all mounted on a metal stand. It is a part of the standard drum kit used by drummers in many styles of music including rock, pop, jazz, and blues. Hi-hats consist of a matching pair of small to medium-sized cymbals mounted on a stand, with the two cymbals facing each other. The bottom cymbal is fixed and the top is mounted on a rod which moves the top cymbal towards the bottom one when the pedal is depressed.
The snare drum or side drum is a percussion instrument that produces a sharp staccato sound when the head is struck with a drum stick, due to the use of a series of stiff wires held under tension against the lower skin. Snare drums are often used in orchestras, concert bands, marching bands, parades, drumlines, drum corps, and more. It is one of the central pieces in a drum set, a collection of percussion instruments designed to be played by a seated drummer and used in many genres of music.
The bass drum, or kick drum, is a large drum that produces a note of low definite or indefinite pitch. The instrument is typically cylindrical, with the drum's diameter much greater than the drum's depth, with a struck head at both ends of the cylinder. The heads may be made of calf skin or plastic and there is normally a means of adjusting the tension either by threaded taps or by strings. Bass drums are built in a variety of sizes, but size does not dictate the volume produced by the drum. The pitch and the sound can vary much with different sizes, but the size is also chosen based on convenience and aesthetics. Bass drums are percussion instruments and vary in size and are used in several musical genres. Three major types of bass drums can be distinguished.
Napalm Death are a British grindcore band formed in Meriden, West Midlands, England, in 1981. While none of its original members remain in the group since December 1986, the lineup of vocalist Mark "Barney" Greenway, bassist Shane Embury, guitarist Mitch Harris and drummer Danny Herrera has remained consistent of the band's career since 1992's Utopia Banished, although, from 1989 to 2004, Napalm Death were a five-piece band after they added Jesse Pintado as the replacement of one-time guitarist Bill Steer; following Pintado's departure, the band reverted to a four-piece rather than replace him.
Scum is the debut studio album by English grindcore band Napalm Death. It was released on 1 July 1987 through Earache Records. It is widely considered a formative influence on the grindcore genre.
A number of heavy metal genres have developed since the emergence of heavy metal during the late 1960s and early 1970s. At times heavy metal genres may overlap or are difficult to distinguish, but they can be identified by a number of traits. They may differ in terms of: instrumentation, tempo, song structure, vocal style, lyrics, guitar playing style, drumming style, and so on.
A drum roll is a technique the percussionist employs to produce, on a percussion instrument, a sustained sound, "over the value of the written note."
Thrashcore is a fast tempo subgenre of hardcore punk that emerged in the early 1980s. Thrashcore is essentially sped-up hardcore, often using blast beats. Songs can be very brief, and thrashcore is in many ways a less dissonant, less metallic forerunner of grindcore. The genre is sometimes associated with skateboarder subculture.
Pungent Stench is a death metal band from Vienna, Austria formed in 1988. Their last known lineup consists of Martin Schirenc (vocals/guitar), Danny Vacuum (vocals/bass), and Mike G. Mayhem (drums). Pungent Stench achieved early on prominence in the death metal scene due to their unique style of extreme metal and their controversial lyrical content, a seamless blend of gore, paraphilia and black comedy. They dissolved in 1995, re-formed in 1999, then split up again 2007 after recording a final studio album, eventually released in 2018, and re-formed again in 2013.
D-beat is a style of hardcore punk, developed in the early 1980s by imitators of Discharge, after whom the genre is named, as well as a drum beat characteristic of this subgenre. D-beat is known for its "grinding, distorted and brutally political" sound. Discharge may have themselves inherited the beat from Motörhead and the Buzzcocks. D-beat is closely associated with crust punk, which is a heavier, more complex variation. The style was particularly popular in Sweden, and developed there by groups such as Crude SS, Anti Cimex, Mob 47, and Driller Killer. Other D-beat groups include Doom and the Varukers from the UK; Disclose from Japan; Crucifix and Final Conflict from the U.S.; Ratos de Porão from Brazil; and MG15 from Spain. While the style initially developed in the early 1980s, a number of new groups working within the subgenre emerged in the mid-1990s. These include the Swedish groups Wolfbrigade, Totalitär, Avskum, Skitsystem, and Disfear.
Pedro Rigoberto "Pete" Sandoval is a Salvadoran-born American death metal drummer. He is widely regarded as "the father of the blast beat" and one of the fastest drummers in the death metal scene. He plays Sabian cymbals and Evans heads. His first significant stint as a drummer was for the grindcore band Terrorizer, formed in 1986, where he began to demonstrate some of his talent. Heavily influenced by the grindcore music around him, Sandoval quickly developed his abilities as a drummer with little formal training or musical education.
Michael John Harris is an English musician. He is generally credited for coining the terms 'Blast beat' and 'Grindcore' to describe his ferocious drumming attack and the genre he helped create and popularize. Since the mid-1990s, Harris has worked primarily in electronic and ambient music, his main projects being Scorn and Lull. According to Allmusic, Harris's "genre-spanning activities have done much to jar the minds, expectations, and record collections of audiences previously kept aggressively opposed."
Repulsion is an American grindcore band from Flint, Michigan, founded in 1984.
Derek Roddy is an American drummer and snake breeder, originally from Deerfield Beach, Florida. His ability to record entire drum tracks in one or two takes earned him the nickname "One Take".
Paweł Jaroszewicz,, is a Polish heavy metal drummer. Jaroszewicz has played with such bands as Interior, Rootwater, Sinful, Vader, Hazael, Thy Disease, Crionics, Deivos, Nerve, Obscure Sphinx, Christ Agony, No Emotions, Hell-Born, Lost Soul, FS Projekt, and Decapitated. He now plays in Hate, Batushka, Soul Snatcher, and Antigama and is also the current live drummer for Nargaroth and Belphegor.
Daniel "Dan" Wilding is an English drummer from Chichester, England.
In music, a drum stroke is a movement which produces a single or multiple notes on drums or other percussion instruments such as cymbals. There are several types of strokes: four basic single strokes, double strokes, and other multiple strokes such as triples, quadruples, or buzzes of indeterminate number.
Heavy metal drumming is a style of rock music drum kit playing that developed in the late 1960s and early 1970s, largely in the United Kingdom and the United States. With roots in blues rock and psychedelic/acid rock drum playing, heavy metal drummers play with emphatic beats, and overall loudness using an aggressive performing style. Heavy metal drumming is traditionally characterized by emphatic rhythms and dense bass guitar-and-drum sound. The essence of metal drumming is creating a loud, constant beat for the band using the "trifecta of speed, power, and precision".
Grindcore in Indonesia refers to a regional scene of Grindcore music that originated during the early 2000s. Prominent bands include Noxa, Funeral Inception, and JASAD. Indonesian grindcore retains a number of a influences from both foreign grindcore bands, such as Napalm Death, and other genres.