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Where is the "Kick Bass Drum" ?

Rjharle

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When I listen to music, I enjoy the detail in the presentation the most. To be able to distinguish between clapping and finger snapping, electric or acoustic guitar, different horns and drums just allows me to appreciate the musicians/artists so much more. Don't misunderstand me, I do enjoy all the other aspects of the music; ambiance, spread, placement etc. But definition/detail is what I enjoy the most, which leads me to ask this question of the forum:

Where is the "Kick Bass Drum" ?

I do hear it in some Hi Rez recording (192hz/24bit and above) but almost all the music I listen to doesn't have the kick bass drum audio able. I know it is there because it is a intracal part of the timing of the piece.

Why is it removed?
 

Ricardus

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Give an example of something you're listening to with no kick drum in it.

I mean if you want a great example of kick drums (and drums in general) sounding freakin GIGANTIC, check this out.

 
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Ricardus

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But your question raises a good point:

MIXING IS HARD. It took me 10 years before I thought my mixes were "radio ready."

Just because you have a laptop, Reaper, an SM57 knockoff from Amazon, and a Behringer interface doesn't mean you know how to record and mix music.

Rock and roll in particular with lots of guitar tracks and stuff is a challenge, because you have to make space in the mix sonically to be able to HEAR other instruments, and that takes experience. Not just Reaper and some free plugins.

Typically it's not the bass drum, but the bass GUITAR that I find lacking space and definitiion in the mix. It's just a low-end warble instead of articulated notes.
 

Ricardus

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I do hear it in some Hi Rez recording (192hz/24bit and above) but almost all the music I listen to doesn't have the kick bass drum audio able. I know it is there because it is a intracal part of the timing of the piece.
Sample rate and bit depth makes no difference here (or ANYWHERE). This is all about the person who mixed it, unless it was a conscious choice by the producer to make the kick drum low and inaudible in the mix.
 
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Rjharle

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Sample rate and bit depth makes no difference here (or ANYWHERE). This is all about the person who mixed it, unless it was a conscious choice by the producer to make the kick drum low and inaudible in the mix.
I didn't mean to use bit or frequency rate as the default for the bass drum. Only that there seems to be some reason that it appears there. I think it's more the quality of the presentation.

Music lacking kick bass: Bruce Springsteen, 60s,70s ... rock & rock
Jazz Hi Rez has the kick drum.
 

Soundstage

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When I listen to music, I enjoy the detail in the presentation the most. To be able to distinguish between clapping and finger snapping, electric or acoustic guitar, different horns and drums just allows me to appreciate the musicians/artists so much more. Don't misunderstand me, I do enjoy all the other aspects of the music; ambiance, spread, placement etc. But definition/detail is what I enjoy the most, which leads me to ask this question of the forum:

Where is the "Kick Bass Drum" ?

I do hear it in some Hi Rez recording (192hz/24bit and above) but almost all the music I listen to doesn't have the kick bass drum audio able. I know it is there because it is a intracal part of the timing of the piece.

Why is it removed?
Same here. I am always looking for that kick bass drum. Too often this is missing sadly.
 

goat76

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I didn't mean to use bit or frequency rate as the default for the bass drum. Only that there seems to be some reason that it appears there. I think it's more the quality of the presentation.

Music lacking kick bass: Bruce Springsteen, 60s,70s ... rock & rock
Jazz Hi Rez has the kick drum.
There is a lot of frequency masking happening when so many sound objects must share the limited space in a 2 channel mix, instruments that got much in common frequency-wise will drown each other out. I'm sure you sometimes have heard a sparser part in a song where you can clearly hear the kick drum, but when the song got denser the kick drum seem to disappear. Most likely it's there beating equally much through the song but it got drowned out by the frequency masking.

In other cases, the mixer simply opted to sacrifice either the kick drum or the bass guitar because the mix got too muddy and dense with too much energy in that frequency spectrum. And in other cases, the mixer tries to make the one or the other duck for the other with help of something called "side-chain compression". That is done by placing a compressor on let's say the bass guitar but the compressor is triggered by the kick drum and makes the bass guitar duck every time the kick "kicks in". Frequency masking is a problem that's not very easy to solve.
 
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Rjharle

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There is a lot of frequency masking happening when so many sound objects must share the limited space in a 2 channel mix, instruments that got much in common frequency-wise will drown each other out. I'm sure you sometimes have heard a sparser part in a song where you can clearly hear the kick drum, but when the song got denser the kick drum seem to disappear. Most likely it's there beating equally much through the song but it got drowned by the frequency masking.

In other cases, the mixer simply opted to sacrifice either the kick drum or the bass guitar because the mix got too muddy and dense with too much energy in that frequency spectrum. And in other cases, the mixer tries to make the one or the other duck for the other with help of something called "side-chain compression". That is done by placing a compressor on let's say the bass guitar but the compressor is triggered by the kick drum and makes the bass guitar duck every time the kick "kicks in". Frequency masking is a problem that's not very easy to solve.
Thanks for the explanation, but, there seems to be more questions.
Why doesn't it happen at live concerts ? There is a person mixing in the back.
With the "Great introduction of Digital Recording" why can't we get all the music the way it should sound ?
I could understand in the days of vinyl groove conservation but, there seemed to be more base and drums.
 
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Rjharle

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It wouldn't be fair to play a YouTube tune for comparison. I tried to attach My Girl by the Temptations, but it won't work.

That would be another like Fortunate Son by Creedance, and Dreams by Fleetwood Mac
 

HarmonicTHD

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Thanks for the explanation, but, there seems to be more questions.
Why doesn't it happen at live concerts ? There is a person mixing in the back.
With the "Great introduction of Digital Recording" why can't we get all the music the way it should sound ?
I could understand in the days of vinyl groove conservation but, there seemed to be more base and drums.
The recording technology (16/41 vs 24/192) has nothing to do whatsoever whether a mix / piece has good kick drum. It is all about the mixing and making “space” for certain instruments. EQ, side-chaining and compression are only some of the tools. I would recommend watching some YTs. There is great content from producers and engineers talking about this subject in detail and demonstrating how it is done. Or alternatively, if you have the opportunity go see if there is some music school nearby. Many offer nowadays courses on how to produce, mix and how to use a DAW.
Good luck.
 

goat76

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Thanks for the explanation, but, there seems to be more questions.
Why doesn't it happen at live concerts ? There is a person mixing in the back.
With the "Great introduction of Digital Recording" why can't we get all the music the way it should sound ?
I could understand in the days of vinyl groove conservation but, there seemed to be more base and drums.

Great question, but are you 100% sure that's really the case, or is it possible it's just because of the power you feel, thanks to the much higher volume in the live setting?

But let's say it's really the case. Then I guess it's because, in a live setting, they are not limited by the levels in the same way as the recorded music is, and they can probably turn that kick drum "out of proportion" versus the other instruments without it really sounding "out of proportion" in the live setting, which in turn is probably not the case with a recording played at home on your sound system.
 

posvibes

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Where is the "Kick Bass Drum" ?
This has been on my mind for the last few weeks and thought I might pose the same question in the forum, unless it is really obvious I seem to seldom hear it, but something tells me psycho-acoustically I am subliminally counting the beat and hearing it, but drummers are using the kick drum more creatively in syncopation and the kick is pretty subtle.

Thank the Lord I'm not the only one who doesn't hear it!
 

Chrispy

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If you can hear it in some tracks/mixes and not in others it seems to be the tracks/mixes that are the issue, rather than a limitation of your kit or a genre. Want some good drums dry Tool's Chocolate Chip Trip perhaps....
 
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Rjharle

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Great question, but are you 100% sure that's really the case, or is it possible it's just because of the power you feel, thanks to the much higher volume in the live setting?

But let's say it's really the case. Then I guess it's because, in a live setting, they are not limited by the levels in the same way as the recorded music is, and they can probably turn that kick drum "out of proportion" versus the other instruments without it really sounding "out of proportion" in the live setting, which in turn is probably not the case with a recording played at home on your sound system.
As pointed out by others members, there maybe a hole in my musical education. I can play the music load with more than adequate bass and still not hear the kick bass. What I don't get is that if "Digital Recording" is god's gift to man, why are engineers still compromising our music. Space?
 
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Rjharle

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If you can hear it in some tracks/mixes and not in others it seems to be the tracks/mixes that are the issue, rather than a limitation of your kit or a genre. Want some good drums dry Tool's Chocolate Chip Trip perhaps....
Got them Sugar Hip Ya Ya (Pure DSD) - HRES2116 and Vivino Brothers Blues Band - 0345285
 

KeithPhantom

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why are engineers still compromising our music. Space?
As it was said previously, it isn't that easy to make everything sound great, especially when you have multiple very loud instruments, all of which need a presence in the mix. Things such as masking will limit how much dynamic range your ears and brain are able to process at a time, thus, making some music sound "compressed" even though it is not.
Please, that is not 'high resolution'. With all that wideband distortion introduced by that 1-bit-noise-shaped PCM, I still don't know why audiophiles consider it as 'high fidelity'.
 
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Rjharle

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As it was said previously, it isn't that easy to make everything sound great, especially when you have multiple very loud instruments, all of which need a presence in the mix. Things such as masking will limit how much dynamic range your ears and brain are able to process at a time, thus, making some music sound "compressed" even though it is not.

Please, that is not 'high resolution'. With all that wideband distortion introduced by that 1-bit-noise-shaped PCM, I still don't know why audiophiles consider it as 'high fidelity'.
Well, I guess I have a different brain and set of ears at a live concert than I would have at home. Also, love to have music that didn't suffer an engineer's agenda.

P.S I'm not an audiophile, I just like music defined and presented as close to what the artist intended.
 
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