Tobias Gustafsson – Vomitory – Opus Mortis VIII


Band Name: Vomitory
Drummer Name: Tobias Gustafsson
Album Name: Opus Mortis VIII
Release Date: April 2011
Studio Name: Leon Music Studios
Engineer Name: Rikard Löfgren
Cymbals: Meinl
14" Mb10 Heavy Soundwave Hihat
22" Mb20 Heavy Bell Ride
17" Soundcaster Custom Medium Crash
18’’ Soundcaster Custom Medium Crash
19" Soundcaster Custom Powerful Crash
16" Byzance Traditional China
20" Byzance Traditional China
10" Mb20 Rock Splash
10" Byzance Brilliant Splash
Other cymbals:
10" LP Ice Bell
09" Zildjian Oriental Trash Splash
Drums:  Tama Starclassic Performer B/B (Birch + Bubinga) in Dark Mocha Fade
22" x 18" (2) Bass drum (Remo Powerstroke 3 clear batter, Tama black resonant)
10" x 8" Rack tom (Evans EC2 clear top, Remo Ambassador clear bottom)
12" x 9" Rack tom (Evans EC2 clear top, Remo Ambassador clear bottom)
13" x 11" Rack tom (Evans EC2 clear top, Remo Ambassador clear bottom)
16" x 14" Floor tom (Evans EC2 clear top, Remo Abassador clear bottom)
Snares: Tama Starclassic B/B 14" x 5.5" and Pearl Free floating brass 14" x 5" (Evans HD Dry top, Evans Hazy 300 on both).
Pedals: Tama Speed Cobra – original beaters and springs, played them straight out of the box, no adjustments made.
Hardware: All Tama hardware, mounted on a Gibraltar rack.
Sticks: Vater Power 5B nylon
Triggers / Microphones:
1. Snare drum (top): Shure SM57 + Line Audio CM3. Ddrum mic (audio signal used only). No mic on the bottom
2. Rack toms and floor tom: Shure SM57
3. Kick drums: Audix D6 (placed halfway through the front head hole)
4. Overhead L/R: AKG 451B (matched pair), XY style mic placement
5. Overhead middle: Manley Reference C (placed to mainly capture the splashes that are placed over the 10“ and 12“ rack toms in front of me)
6. Ride: Line Audio CM3 (pointing at the bow of the cymbal)
7. China 20“ (R): Neumann TLM 103 (pointing at the edge of the cymbal)
8. China 16” (L): Shure SM57 (pointing at the edge of the cymbal)
Studio Tips:
I put new drum heads only on the snare and the kick drums for this recording. For the toms, I kept my old Evans EC2’s, just like I did on our previous album “Carnage Euphoria“ (2009). My friend and fellow drummer Calle Boman gave me this tip to leave the used batter heads on the toms instead of putting brand new ones on. In metal, and maybe death metal in particular, the attack is often more important than the actual tone of the toms (and I hate triggered toms). And by leaving the old (but not entirely killed) EC2’s on my birch/bubinga’s (medium to low tuning), you get a killer, fat and wet tom sound with lots of attack and enough tone to work with.
If the number of inputs allows, it’s always better to use a couple of microphones too many on the kit than one too little. You can always mute unwanted tracks in the mix but you can never add the things you’re missing once you have recorded your drum parts. Except for careful mic placement on the drums and the overhead mics, I prefer to put separate mics on the ride, chinas and the splashes, because you often want to EQ them separately in the mix later on, to make them stand out in the cymbal mix.
Drummer Comments:
For the snare we used two mics on top – one Shure SM57 (can never go wrong with that) and a Line Audio CM3 to capture the high frequencies of the snare. We also used the audio signal from a ddrum trig mic and added that to the mix just an ounce to enhance the attack. The tone, body and overall sound of the snare are still the acoustic drum through the acoustic mics.
The rest of the kit is all my kit – no samples from a drum sound library or such, not even the kicks – just my own killer Tama drums!
I was very careful to get the right tempos for all the songs, more than I’ve ever been before. And that definitely paid off, I think. Also, this is the first Vomitory album where I played to a click track on all the songs on the album.
I didn’t put down my drum tracks for all songs in a row. I did two or three songs at the time and then we put guitar and/or bass on those songs. That gave me time to rest and to mentally reload. Working this way totally suits me, as it takes away a lot of the stress that you otherwise often experience during a recording session.