“Deep Set” was one of the first songs that Greg Puciato presented to me for his first solo record, Child Soldier: Creator of God. We’ve known each other for more than 20 years, and both of our prior bands (Poison the Well and The Dillinger Escape Plan) had toured together a bunch throughout the early to mid 2000s.
We struck up a friendship from hanging out on those tours and one thing we connected over was our love for the early ’90s grunge-alternative movement. Nirvana, Soundgarden and Alice In Chains were just a few of those bands that we both share a deep fondness for. I’ve always considered my playing rooted in guys like Matt Cameron and Dave Grohl.
The song was pretty straight forward. He sent over the arrangement demoed out with a very basic, skeletal beat with a brief explanation of what he was looking for. I was given a lot of freedom to be creative with the song—which was great.
As the song is very simple and straight-forward, the challenge was building and releasing tension dynamically at different points throughout the arrangement.
I gave the principal beat an (almost) static kick and snare pattern to really emphasize a drowsy and lackadaisical groove. As I had demos with vocal patterns and music, I felt like my role was to glue everything together—locking in with the bass and/or guitar at the appropriate points, while also hitting accents with Greg’s vocal patterns when it made sense. I do enjoy this, because most of the time, you’re just dealing with music minus vocals.
Drum-fill wise, it was about keeping it simple and powerful to move one section to the other aiding the whole “building and releasing tension” thing effectively. I feel really great with how the song turned out. It rips.
The main drums you’re hearing on the play-through is me in my studio with my basic recording set up. I always have it ready to go if I want to record demos for a band or artist I’m working with.
My studio kit is a Q Drum Company Los Angeles model—a 24×14 kick drum in mahogany/poplar with maple reinforcement rings, a 14×10 rack tom in mahogany/poplar with maple reinforcement rings and die-cast hoops, a 16×16 floor tom in mahogany/poplar with maple reinforcement rings and die-cast hoops, a 18×16 floor tom in mahogany/poplar with maple reinforcement rings and die-cast hoops—all in vintage-white, marine-pearl wraps. My snare is a 14×7 Q Drum Company cast bell-bronze with die-cast hoops. The cymbals are Zildjian—15″ K Sweet hi-hats, 18″ & 20″ Avedis thin crashes, a 20″ Crash of Doom, and a 22″ Classic Avedis ride.
I’m such a big fan of huge, blown-out room drums, and since I tracked, filmed, and edited the play-through myself, I really wanted to embellish the drums a bit more than how it was recorded. They’re both pretty identical, though the record is a bit less wild [hahaha].
Nick Rowe (producer and engineer) and Steve Evetts (mixer) really did an amazing job bringing out how great my drums sound in the main room at Hybrid Studios, Santa Ana, California. I couldn’t be happier with the end result.
WATCH THE PLAY-THROUGH!
SEE THE VIDEO!
HEAR THE SONG ON SPOTIFY!