It’s pretty cool to watch the craftsmen at Gretsch use the company’s ritzy Renown Series to tinker with exotic shell types. Their latest foray into the wild world of wood comes in the form of the new Renown Purewood Wenge 6-piece shell pack, which features 7-ply, 100 percent African wenge shells finished in high gloss lacquer. One of the strongest tropical timbers, wenge (pronounced “weng-gei”) produces deep, low, and rich overtones with superior projection and clarity.
The kit comes with a 22" x 18" bass drum; 10" x 7", 12" x 8", 14" x 12", and 16" x 14" toms; and a 14" x 6" 10-lug snare. These are cut with 30-degree bearing edges, and fitted with chrome hardware, die-cast hoops, and Evans USA heads. Only 100 kits will be available worldwide, so if you happen to have a spare $4,155 burning a hole in your pocket (suggested retail price, of course), you don’t want to ponder the possibilities for too long.