Although Metal Month is technically done, we still reap a few final fruits of it. To promote the release of Toontrack’s Metal Beats Midi software, here’s a Q&A with the man behind all of the beats and fills of that software, Soilwork’s Dirk Verbeuren.
Where do you draw most inspiration for your drum parts in Soilwork, from other metal drummers or completely different sources?
Music that resonates with me, inspires me. I love the drumming of [previous Soilwork drummer] Henry Ranta, so groovy and creative. Some other drummers whose playing I admire are Martin Axelsson, Peter Wildoer, Tomas Haake, Sean Reinert, Gavin Harrison, Kai Hahto, Morgan Ågren, Chad Smith, Gene Hoglan, Brann Dailor, Tim Alexander, Pete Sandoval and Dave Lombardo. I also love 80s/90s hip-hop like Beastie Boys and Run-DMC, and electronic/experimental stuff like Autechre, Final, Squarepusher, Black Lung, Body 13, Aphex Twin and Scorn. Last but not least – the music we write as a band is a huge inspiration in and of itself. I try to let each song guide me in a natural way. It’s better to go with the flow than to overthink things.
Who in your mind are some of the best drummers in metal today and why?
One young metal drummer that stands out to me is Kerim “Krimh” Lechner [Behemoth/Decapitated], he has such an awesome flow and a sound that’s truly his own. Danny Walker [Intronaut/Murder Construct] is extremely creative and groovy. Derek Roddy and George Kollias are always amazing to see and hear. Peter Wildoer really pushes the envelope in his recent work. There are many, many more… These are the ones that come to mind right now.
What’s the one kit piece you’d be stumped without? And you can’t say the double-pedal!
My floor toms. I use a 16″ on the right and an 18″ on the left. They’re the ideal complement of the kick/snare/hat or cymbal trio. Without them I might as well be playing naked.
You are an avid e-drummer. Give us a rundown of your setup.
Most importantly, I use Superior Drummer. It’s the ultimate drum software, versatile, rich and easy to use. I doubt I’d be playing e-drums at all if it weren’t for Superior Drummer. My e-kit is a second hand Roland TD-10 which I’m planning on upgrading. For now it does the job, but the newer models have a much better dynamic response. And, of course, you need a good computer. I grew up using a PC and still haven’t switched to Mac. My machine is a Rain Ion and my DAW, Nuendo.