Dan Searle's 5 drum tips for creating double kick grooves

Dan Searle: when he's not kicking back, he's just plain kicking
Dan Searle: when he's not kicking back, he's just plain kicking

Dan Searle's dynamic, powerful style was a key component in the rise of British Metalcore menaces Architect - and 50% of that is down to his extremely expressive feet

1. Think on your feet

"Always keep your right foot on the beat and on the '&'s and keep your left foot on the 'e's and 'a's ('1e&a2e' etc). This will help you develop more interesting, off-kilter rhythms.

Work on your weak foot, do some exercises that focus on working the 'e's and 'a's. The strength in that leg/foot is vital. And stay balanced! No one likes a weak left."

2. Don't obey the guitarist

"Don't write something you can't play! I see countless bands playing double-kick patterns they are simply incapable of playing. And worse, some trigger so every little mistake is laid bare.

"I suppose a lot of guitarists write songs and just tell their drummer 'do that', but just say no, or practise it until you've nailed it. Sloppy double-kick is the worst!"

3. Leave space

"For a band like Architects leaving room is vital. The dynamic is so important in almost all genres and the dynamic is so reliant on how the drummer approaches a song.

"The space you give a song is also what gives it its power when it gets going."

4. Experiment with your pedal...

"When it comes to pedal tension everyone is different and it depends on what kind of speed you hope to achieve. I currently don't have to play consistent 16ths on my kick at anything over 180bpm so I have my pedals extremely loose because I like the weight I can get behind my hits.

"As you tighten your pedals you'll get less weight on your hits but your pedals will do more work for you and as a result, with practice, you will hit higher speeds. See what works for you.

"My drum tech hates the way my pedals are set up!"

5. ...and heads

"Both batter and resonant heads play a part in the response of your kick drum so experiment with them too. It's a bit of a give and take between the tension on your pedals and the tension on your heads."


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