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Where is the "Kick Bass Drum" ?

goat76

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The bass guitar and kick drum are totally locked in on Dreams and it's hard NOT to hear them as a unit, as they were intended to be.
Yes, throughout the whole song the bass guitar and kick drum are the fundamental part of that song, if that can't be heard there must be some other problems. The kick drum got that "slappy" and "thumpy" sound that some drummers like, a completely different kind of kick sound than what is usually used for harder and faster types of rock music where the drummers most of the time go for a faster decay type of kick drum sound.

It's always easier to hear the bass drum in slow-paced songs without too many things cluttering the low end and fighting for the same frequency range all the time, and not too much frequency masking going on. The song "A Well-Made Woman" by King Hannah https://open.qobuz.com/track/135728416 is a good example where the kick drum is easily heard, it goes deep and doesn't have to fight too much with the other instruments.

 
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NiagaraPete

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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?
Try listening to Pineapple Thief "from nothing but the truth". Gavin's kick drum kicks me in the chest. The farther you go in the album the better it gets.
 

Soundstage

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Don’t play that song by Aretha Franklin is a prime example of a nice kick drum which is absent from modern pop and rock musi.
 

sigbergaudio

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I think IMHO it comes down to today's market; there is no place for it. Today music is relegated to a chip, storage, mobility of the cell phone and ear buds. Markets cannot afford to include wide dynamic range in their music because it would harm the user's ears (we all know where that would go). So it would seem that that policy sits fine with the engineers because it is difficult to produce the kick bass anyway.

So folks like me who are looking for a complete musical presentation will just have to settle for what we get :(

As long as you have music, you will never be alone :)

A bit late to the party but had to reply to this, my impression is that it's completely opposite - most modern recordings have plenty of both bass and kick drum, and in general good production. The recordings you referred to was 50 years old, so where did this comment about modern productions come from?
 

Vacceo

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I find the original assertion a bit strange. Perhaps because I listen to a lot of Extreme Metal, blast beats are an inherent sound of the genres, Death Metal and Grindcore in particular. With old records such as Morbid Angel's Altars of Madness or Blessed are the Sick, the kickdrum is omnipresent.

So I guess the presence is a matter of mastering tastes, because making the sound present does not seem to be difficult.
 

Soundstage

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A bit late to the party but had to reply to this, my impression is that it's completely opposite - most modern recordings have plenty of both bass and kick drum, and in general good production. The recordings you referred to was 50 years old, so where did this comment about modern productions come from?
There is more bass on modern recordings but one could say that it is so because in part modern recording are heavily compressed that they would be lifeless without the deeper bass. In other words, the loud kick drum has been replaced by deeper bass, which is not the same (I like both!).
I’d be happy to be corrected, if you show modern recordings where the kick drum sounds like the Aretha Franklin song I posted earlier.
 

Eetu

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It's just mixing choices really. To use one of my favorite band's the Big Thief as an example: this one has more low-passed punchier kick drum
whereas this is closer to the Aretha song with the upper harmonics retained a bit more:
 

Frgirard

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A bit late to the party but had to reply to this, my impression is that it's completely opposite - most modern recordings have plenty of both bass and kick drum, and in general good production. The recordings you referred to was 50 years old, so where did this comment about modern productions come from?
on the pro forums, the desire to have the speaker that reproduces the kick drum is a constant. some apps used in mixing manage to break down the sound to highlight the kick drum.
 

sigbergaudio

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There is more bass on modern recordings but one could say that it is so because in part modern recording are heavily compressed that they would be lifeless without the deeper bass. In other words, the loud kick drum has been replaced by deeper bass, which is not the same (I like both!).
I’d be happy to be corrected, if you show modern recordings where the kick drum sounds like the Aretha Franklin song I posted earlier.

You told me to don't play that song from Aretha Franklin, so I won't. Haha. :)

But seriously, weird recording - all the drums are hard panned to one channel. The kick drum is nicely audible in the beginning where it's mostly what's playing, but then somewhat disappears into the mix even on that track.

Here are some tracks with easily audible kick drums (Random pickings, it's very not hard to find within my music library at least)

"Modern" (as in not from the 60s or 70s):

Metallica (30 years old):

AC/DC (40 years old)



Actually Modern music

Brothers Osborne (2021)

Five finger death punch (2022)

Sondre Justad (2021)

Arctic Monkeys (2013)

Loi (2022)

Polyphia (2018)

Slash (2012)


..I could go on but I guess point made, unless I'm mistaking what we're looking for, which I guess may be the case :)
 

Witterings

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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

The kick drum in all of these songs is clear and in my opinion mixed as it should be, if you started cranking it up, it'd sound out of place and detract from the melody / other instruments and vocals.

A lot of the time the drummer will work with the bass player and the kick drum works in tandem with the main bass notes, maybe you're just not able to clearly seperate the 2 when this happens although when you become aware of it, the more you listen the easier it becomes to distinguish between the 2.

Worth bearing in mind that a drummer's primary purposes are to keep time and provide rhythm rather than being the main melody in a song although they do massively contribute to how a song "feels".

This video isn't specific to the kick drum but it can give you an idea of when drums can become too much / overpowering and why they're subtly blended into the mix, then imagine the songs you mentioned with the kick's volume doubled, it'd just detract from everything else that's going on.

 

Soundstage

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You told me to don't play that song from Aretha Franklin, so I won't. Haha. :)

But seriously, weird recording - all the drums are hard panned to one channel. The kick drum is nicely audible in the beginning where it's mostly what's playing, but then somewhat disappears into the mix even on that track.

Here are some tracks with easily audible kick drums (Random pickings, it's very not hard to find within my music library at least)

"Modern" (as in not from the 60s or 70s):

Metallica (30 years old):

AC/DC (40 years old)



Actually Modern music

Brothers Osborne (2021)

Five finger death punch (2022)

Sondre Justad (2021)

Arctic Monkeys (2013)

Loi (2022)

Polyphia (2018)

Slash (2012)


..I could go on but I guess point made, unless I'm mistaking what we're looking for, which I guess may be the case :)
Thanks for the actual examples. I really appreciate the effort and I tried them on my HD650 tuned to the Harman curve and I have not been very impressed. Yes in the Enter Sandman you clearly hear the drum kit and the kick drum. But it sounds subdued… I’ll listen more later and report.
 

sigbergaudio

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Thanks for the actual examples. I really appreciate the effort and I tried them on my HD650 tuned to the Harman curve and I have not been very impressed. Yes in the Enter Sandman you clearly hear the drum kit and the kick drum. But it sounds subdued… I’ll listen more later and report.

If the kick drum in Enter Sandman sounds subdued I dare say your setup is A) not very accurate or B) you're expecting something that wouldn't work in practice. Having the bass drum further in front of the mix than this would sound weird and not coherent with the rest of the instruments.

Metallica do however have a somewhat peculiar and "soft" sound on their kick drums on this album. How about the final tune, the one from Slash? How does that sound? That kick has more punch/bite.
 
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