drummer Paul BostaphWhen one thinks of the quintessential Slayer drummer – whether it’s Dave Lombardo, Jon Dette, or in recent years, Paul Bostaph – a mammoth drumkit is what one pictures him seated behind. But Paul Bostaph is about to change that notion. For the band’s most recent effort, God Hates Us All, Bostaph decided to downsize. “I wanted to make the kit more playable for myself in terms of specific ideas I’ve had,” he explains. “Although I like the different voices you can use, I don’t feel the larger kit suits my style.”

Not only has Bostaph eliminated a piece or two, he’s also been a proponent of using shallower-depth toms for clarity’s sake. “A long time ago,” he recalls, “I started experimenting with smaller tom sizes as part of the trend. Instead of using the big, power sizes, I found that I could get a better tone out of the smaller sizes. They’re not as muddy. Our music’s so fast, it’s nice to get a nice, tight sound, and I’ll usually get that out of a smaller drum.”

Bostaph learned that a slight swap in his kit configuration has also given him a chance to re-work his playing. “It’s much more comfortable,” he insists. “And only having two rack toms forces me to go down to the floor toms faster, so I use them more. I wanted to incorporate the floor toms more into my style anyway, so this has worked out great.”