Ski Beatz: Karate School Drum Kit Review
As we continue our quest for that dope drum sound, we often find ourselves at a crossroads. We all want to have our own sound, own flavor, our own thump. Unless we are willing to sample drums from records, break beats, or drum machines, EQ them, and add our own effects to make it completely our own, we’re pretty much stuck with what comes with our DAW. Purchasing drum kits is a quick way to up our drum library, and help develop our own style or emulate our favorite producers. Ski Beatz (Jay-Z, Camp-Lo, AZ) has a new drum kit out that will help us with just that.
Karate School is packed with 100 samples (25 kicks, 25 snares, 25, hats, and 25 percussion). Not only do we get the kicks, hats, and snares in a clean high quality WAV format, but the liberty has been taken to resample these sounds through an SP-1200. This gives us that 12 bit, gritty, old school late 80’s early 90’s sound with that classic SP-1200 ring. With these drums, there won’t be any need to use that SP-1200 emulator on our Maschines.
The kicks are without a doubt the stand out in this collection. All 25 have character, punchiness, and warmth to spare. There wouldn’t be much need to do any EQing or compressing, these are amazing right out the box. The snares on the other hand not so much. While the sounds themselves are great, it would have been nice to have every snare dry. With most of them we can hear slight reverberation, which can clash with reverb we are already using. After experimentation, a gate does the trick, or trimming up the sample. The hi hats only need one word, crispy! The live percussion isn’t bad, but they’re also on the wrong side of mediocre. The kalimba loops only play out the left side of our monitors, the bell tree loops don’t use the actual bell tree hits provided with the kit (we can always chop), and the limba loops are a little messy (especially limbaloop2).
When it’s said and done, Ski Beatz provides us with some great kicks, good snares, and awesome hats. The live percussion we could have done without. I personally would have liked to have seen some toms, rides, and crashes in the place of the live percussion. Maybe we’ll see that in the next collection he brings us. For now, purchase Karate School and start making hits!
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