Thanks to Reading-based Cymbalise's 2013 launch, UFIP metals are now easier to find than ever on these shores. Cymbalise sent us a right old mix of metals, the first half of which (the Class Brilliant and Supernova lines) were reviewed back in May, and now we've got our hands on the second half.
On unpacking three deceptively heavy boxes of cymbals we find that Cymbalise has sent 15" Light hats, 10" splash, 18" crash, 8" china, 20" crash and 22" ride in the Natural range.
The Natural series metals are made from B20 bronze and have undergone UFIP's Rotocasting process. This sees bronze poured into a mould and spun at around 1,000rpm.
According to UFIP this aids the removal of any impurities in the cymbal and increases the bell-to-bow ratio of each cymbal produced. The Natural cymbals are then hand-hammered with a double punch.
The 15" Light hats are the first to see any action, and they're surprisingly agile for a pair of 15" hats, particularly as this reviewer is more accustomed to his trusty old 13's. They also cut through fantastically and let out a gorgeous 'tiss' response to the merest tap of the hi-hat pedal.
At the other end of the spectrum, the 22" ride is deafeningly loud, with a ping-tastic bell the likes of which we've seldom heard before. It's a real ear-wax dislodger and has miles of sustain. It's not ideal for crashing, but for heavy riding punctuated with powerful ping, this is your man.
The 18" and 20" crashes are also a treat, particularly the smaller of the two which is great for riding, packs a hearty crash when given a well-placed shot and is perhaps the most versatile metal in the entire range.
UFIP's 18" Natural China is as excellently trashy as you'd hope and sounds absolutely superb when deployed as a snare accent. The final cymbal in the series is the diddy 10" splash, and while it carries a decent tone, it lacks the wow appeal of the rest of the range.
The series as a whole is packed full of deliciously dark, rich tones. While it'd be easy to peg them as purely for jazz and fusion (for which they would, admittedly, fit like a glove) they'd also be a good match for a backroom blues set.