I’ve been listening to Meshuggah off and on since I heard Chaosphere in 1999 but haven’t broken any of their music down until recently.
Dan Weiss gets all the thanks for the inspiration. After attending one of his drum clinics I decided I would transcribe one of their riffs to use in my practice for a few days.
I started listening to the album Nothing while shoveling snow a few weeks ago and the first verse in the song Glints Collide kept grabbing me. It starts at about the 30 second mark and while it sounds complex at first, it’s pretty straight forward.
It makes the most sense to write out in 4/4 time, but the riff is just a repeating pattern of 7/8 (4 times) that starts on beat 2. This leaves one extra quarter note on 4 of the last measure. I placed an accent where the 7/8 pattern starts each time.
And here’s what it looks like adapted as an eighth note comping pattern against a swing ride cymbal beat. All eighth notes are swung. Play HH on 2 & 4.
This is just the beginning. Here are a few ways I’ve practiced with this pattern:
Work through various permutations to adjust where it starts or ends.
Play HH with left foot on quarter notes.
Play HH with left foot as dotted quarter notes.
Play HH with left foot on all upbeats.
Feather the bass drum and play the pattern between the left hand and left foot.
Improvise a ride cymbal pattern that compliments the snare and bass drum part.
Drop the ride cymbal and fill the space between the bass/snare on the toms.
Have fun and let me know if you come up with a more interesting way to use this kind of material in your practice routine.
I went to a drum clinic by Frankie Malabe years before the popular book Afro-Cuban Rhythms for Drumset came out. I’m pretty sure it was sometime between 1989 and 1991 at a shop called Preferable Percussions in Minneapolis.
I have an audio copy of the clinic that I’m working on converting. In the meantime, here’s a copy of the handout:
Rhythms Covered on the Handout
I highly recommend getting the book if you don’t have it.
I get a lot of inspiration from Instagram posts and want to start sharing some of my transcriptions. I’ll start with Dan Weiss.
I’ve been fortunate to take a couple of lessons from Dan Weiss and am a huge fan of his Patreon page. Every week I’m working on something new that’s fun and challenging because of an idea he sparked or a direct exercise he’s given.
I can’t remember how I first became aware of Dan, but this is one of the first Instagram videos I saw from him and I was obsessed with it. It took a couple of hours to wrap my head around it and transcribe. Once I had it I emailed Dan to see if I got it right.