Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today

14th Oct 2010 | 08:27

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
From congas and bongos to cowbells and cajons

This is a constantly updated gallery of the best percussion instruments on the planet - from congas and bongos to cowbells and cajons, there’s an instrument or accessory here to suit every drummer.

All the percussion products here are hand-picked from the buyers’ guide pages of Rhythm magazine following a gruelling test process. So, have a browse and be sure to click through to read the full review for an in-depth look at each instrument.

First up: Gon Bops’ excellent Alex Acuña Series Congas

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Best congas: Gon Bops Alex Acuña Series Congas
£300 (Super Quinto), £305 (Quinto), £320 (Conga), £360 (Tumba)

MusicRadar’s verdict:

Weather Report drummer and percussionist Alex Acuña has had his favourite hand percussion instruments given the signature treatment, and truly beautiful they are, too. Alex’s first congas were actually Gon Bops, and these North American ashwood congas are old-school in look and, with DW behind the revamped company, you know they’re gonna be classy.

stars

If you like Gon Bops’ Alex Acuña Series Congas, you’ll also like:

Pearl Elite Series Mahogany Congas

LP Galaxy Giovanni Congas - (BUY: Thomann)

Next: Best timbales: LP Tito Puento Series

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Best timbales: LP Tito Puento Series
From £423

MusicRadar’s verdict:

This company sets the standard when it comes to timbales, and El Rey’s extensive signature range is available in brass, ‘commemorative’ bronze or stainless steel, all with a quality stand and cowbell mount. You can choose between 12" to 16" timbale sets, 15" and 16" Thunder Timbs or 9.25" and 10.25" timbalitos.

BUY: LP Tito Puento Series Timbale:Thomann

If you like LP’s Tito Puento Series, you’ll also like:

Meinl Luis Conte Signature Series Timbales - (BUY: Thomann)

Meinl Amadito Valdes Timbales - (BUY: Thomann)

Pearl Marc Quinones Steel Timbales - (BUY: Thomann)

Next: Best cowbell: Rhythm Tech Metal Percussion Cowbells

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Best cowbell: Rhythm Tech Metal Percussion Cowbells
£26-£135

MusicRadar’s verdict:

Pete Engelhart is a serious artisan who has quite literally forged a reputation as the most prolific producer of handmade cowbells (among other wonderful otherworldly creations such as the popular ‘ribbon crasher’) and all with distinctive, musical tones, shapes and designs that take the realm of metal percussion into the future.

stars

If you like Rhythm Tech’s Metal Percussion Cowbells, you’ll also like:

Pearl Horacio Hernandez Signature Cowbell - (BUY: Thomann)

Latin Percussion Salsa Series Cowbell - (BUY: Thomann)

Next: Best cajons: Gon Bops Alex Acuña Series Cajon

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Best cajons: Gon Bops Alex Acuña Series Cajon
£199

MusicRadar’s verdict:

Weather Reporter Acuña has put his name to this versatile, beautifully-made cajon from newly-revamped company Gon Bops. Snares lie diagonally across the top corners giving a wide choice of sounds, plus it has more adjustable screws than most cajons meaning more control over snap and resonance. A work of art, and hats off to the craftsmen that produced it.

stars

FULL REVIEW:Gon Bops Alex Acuña Series Cajon

If you like Gon Bops’ Alex Acuña Cajon, you’ll also like:

Duende Confusion Cajon

Sonor Standard Cajon - (BUY: Thomann)

Next: Best djembes: Remo Key-Tuned Djembe

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Best djembes: Remo Key-Tuned Djembe
£199-£392

MusicRadar’s verdict:

Easy to tune and available in five sizes, from 10" to 17" in diameter and 24" to 28" in height. Constructed entirely from man-made materials, the djembes are fitted with Remo’s strong Advanced Acousticon shells and new SkynDeep Black FiberSkyn Mondo drum heads, featuring the ‘straight-wall’ construction method which elevates the heads away from the rim. A revelation!

stars

FULL REVIEW: Remo Key-Tuned Djembe

BUY: Remo Key-Tuned Djembe:Thomann | Andertons Music Co.

If you like Remo’s Key-Tuned Djembe, you’ll also like:

Meinl Rope-Tuned Mahogany Djembes - (BUY: Thomann | Andertons Music Co.)

Remo Paulo Mattiolo Signature Djembes - (BUY: Andertons Music Co.)

Remo Designer Series Djembes - (BUY: Thomann)

Next: Best bongos: Gon Bops Alex Acuña Series Bongos

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Best bongos: Gon Bops Alex Acuña Series Bongos
£155

MusicRadar’s verdict:

As with the matching congas, these are solidly made, affordable professional instruments that are traditional in appearance, a joy to play and a fitting tribute to such a brilliantly versatile musician. These natural lacquer-finished ashwood drums come as a 7" and 8.5" set, boast a striking tiger-stripe pattern and sound awesome.

If you like Gon Bops’Alex Acuña Series Bongos, you’ll also like:

Latin Percussion Giovanni Galaxy Bongos - (BUY: Thomann)

Next: Best shakers: Meinl Spark Shakers

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Best shakers: Meinl Spark Shakers
£17 (medium), £19 (large)

MusicRadar’s verdict:

These relatively new inventions are easy to play and, with an intriguing array of sounds, it’s no surprise that these tactile little fellas are a standout choice. The metallised disc-shaped basket fits beautifully into the palm of your hand and is easy to mute.

FULL REVIEW: Meinl Hand Percussion

BUY: Meinl Spark Shakers:Thomann | Andertons Music Co.

Next: Best auxiliary percussion: Meinl Samba Range

Percussion instruments round-up: the best in the world today
Best auxiliary percussion: Meinl Samba Range
From £10

MusicRadar’s verdict:

Meinl’s Brazilian percussion range includes wonderful wood or aluminium surdo drums on legs, articulate lightweight metal or wooden repiniques and the choice of single, double or even triple aluminium samba shakers. Meinl’s authentic designs and highly durable build quality means that these drums will last.

stars

FULL REVIEW: Meinl Samba Series Percussion

BUY: Meinl Standalone Surdo:Thomann

If you likeMeinl’s Samba Range, you’ll also like:

LP Hand Percussion - (BUY: Thomann | Andertons Music Co.)

Meinl Hand Percussion - (BUY: Thomann | Andertons Music Co.)

Pearl Tombourine - (BUY: Thomann)


Liked this? Now read: The best drum kits in the world today

Connect with MusicRadar: via Twitter, Facebook and YouTube

Get MusicRadar straight to your inbox: Sign up for the free weekly newsletter

Share this Article
Google+

Apps you might like:

Most Popular

TopView classic version