How to sound like Fear Factory's Raymond Herrera

16th Jun 2009 | 15:22

Double kick, drum trigger pioneer reveals all

Raymond herrera

Raymond Herrera first wowed the metal community with his cutting-edge sound and technique on 1992's Soul Of A New Machine and has continued to do so ever since. He's a pioneer of drum trigger technology and a master of double kick work…

"I've been with Tama for years," he told Rhythm magazine. "I went for the bigger drum kit because of Stephen (Carpenter) from the Deftones, who I was in a band called Kush with. He came down to Tama with me and helped me choose the kit."

"I used to tune higher when I triggered my toms because if the drums are too loose the sensitivity goes out of whack with the triggers," Raymond Herrera on tuning

Triggers

Raymond is renowned for his use of triggers to achieve his defined drum sound but he now only triggers his 20"x18" bass drums with ddrum 4s, so his tuning has changed. "I used 22"s for a long time but I moved on to 20"s. I seem to get a tighter sound and I feel like I can play faster on 20"s. I don't know if it's a mental thing?"

"My tuning is very standard too. I used to tune higher when I triggered my toms because if the drums are too loose the sensitivity goes out of whack with the triggers."

Zildjian

Raymond also has a passion for all things Zildjian. "Anything that Zildjian makes I pretty much love," he says. "I normally go with New Beat hi-hats and the Earth ride because it's really heavy. As for crashes, everything Zildjian makes is incredible, from the Darks to the Avedis line."

Next page: Raymond Herrera's drum setup detail

Raymond herrera drum setup

Tama Starclassic Maple in Natural Blond Maple finish

A) 10"x9"
B) 12"x10" rack tom
C) 13"x11" rack tom
D) 16"x16" floor tom
E) 18"x16" floor tom
F) 14"x4" snare
G) 14"x5 1/2" optional snare
H) two 20"x18" kicks

Zildjian cymbals

1) two 12" Oriental China trashes
2) two 13" New-Beat hi-hats
3) 19" A Projection crash
4) 20" A Projection crash
5) 20" Oriental Classic china
6) 20" Earth ride

Plus...

Power Tower custom rack system, Tama hardware including Wide Rider drum throne, two DW5000 bass drum pedals, Attack drum heads, ddrum4 triggers, Korg D1200 studio and Pro-Mark 5A Oakwood nylon tip sticks

Next page: Raymond Herrera talks playing live, customising racks and the all-important kick pedal

Fear factory

Metal is a pretty furious style of music to pull off without some level of force, especially live, which is why Raymond favours thicker heads for the rigours of the road: "In the studio I'll use one-ply mediums and then on tour the two-ply medium or sometimes heavy heads because when you're doing records it's more about the sound than the durability while on tour it's the other way round."

"When you're doing records it's more about the sound than the durability while on tour it's the other way round," Raymond Herrera on heads

"Bulletproof rig"

As for keeping his kit on the stage he had to customise a standard Tama rack. "We added more bars and clamps to it," he says. "It has curved stainless steel pipes with stable horizontal square legs." Nestled inside this seemingly bulletproof rig is perhaps the most important part of his set-up, the bass drum pedals.

He uses DW5000 dual chain drives. "I started using them when I was 16 and never stopped," he says. "They're not the lightest ones on the market, but they are the most comfortable I have used."


Liked this? Then try:
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100 greatest drum beats of all time

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