Bangkok-based Tycoon Percussion has grown to become the largest percussion manufacturer in Thailand. Here we look at one of its hybrid acrylic canons.
This environmentally-friendly, family-owned business offers some killer percussion. This month we have three of their cajons to put to the test. We hope to coax a range of kit and hand percussion sounds from this ever-popular and potentially versatile acoustic instrument.
With over 70 models to choose from, Tycoon's cajon range is as extensive as it is varied. Though many are constructed from wood, there is also a choice of fibreglass, acrylic or hybrids of wood/acrylic. Cajons from Tycoon's Vertex Series, for example, have a unique pyramid shape, while the Supremo and Legacy series are more conventionally formed.
Tycoon also offers percussion hybrids with a mix of cajon and a djembe, bongo or conga. These are available in a variety of shapes and sizes, closely mimicking the sound and, often, the actual shape of the original instrument.
For review, we have a Cherry Red hybrid, with an acrylic body and exotic Black Makah tapa. It's one of the most expensive in the Tycoon range and - with its bulky 10mm-thick acrylic body, it is also the heaviest.
The semi-transparent body allows a glimpse of the innards with the reinforcing post, snare wires and through the bottom section, the chunky rubber feet. This model warrants some sort of internal lighting, put to great effect on Tycoon's 'Lightbox' cajon.
The acrylic is a powerful beast and, at times, is surprisingly loud when played with palms on the hands. When compared like for like, it lacks the woody warmth and depth of a full wood cajon. However, when played with a pair of cajon brushes, the textured surface of the Exotic Black Makah grain allows a convincing swish, showing a more delicate and subtle side