Eric Moore Of Suicidal Tendencies: “Smash It”

Moore's Setup

eric moore

Drums PDP Concept
1 24" x 18" Bass Drum
2 22"x 20"Bass Drum
3 14" x 5.5" Snare
4 8" x 8" Tom
5 1" x 8.5" Tom
6 12" x 9" Tom
7 14" x 12" Floor Tom
8 16" x 14" Floor Tom
9 18" x 16" Floor Tom
10 20" x 18" Gong Drum

Cymbals Zion Eric Moore II Signature Series
A 14" Hi-hat
B 20 Crash
C 17" Crash
D 10" Effects Splash
E 21" Ride
F 12" Effects Hats (stacked)
G 19" Crash
H 18" Crash
I 17" China
J 18" China

Eric Moore also uses DW hardware and pedals, Aquarian heads (Force 10s on beater side; Response 1 Clear resonant side; and Super Kick10 on bass drum), and Pro-Mark Eric Moore signature series sticks.

After a fusion-style tom fill at 1:16, the drummer digs into a halting spacious beat for a bridge to verse two, eliciting visions of early Primus via prominent hi-hat strokes and a snare that really pops. “Right there, me and the guitar player are really, really vibing,” says Moore. “I’m playing a side hat, so I’m in and out of the groove, and I just pick and choose where I place the snare, just to be different.”

Be sure to note how Moore caps the long snare fill at 2:10, where one quick strike on the hi-hat precedes a shot on the snare right before a pause. “It just felt right,” he says of the move. “Open hi-hat before the snare hit, it sounds like stop! Say ’stop’ [as you play it] – I pronounce the drum fill. It can make a world of difference.”

Arriving at the 2:16 mark – another super-busy polyrhythmic beat begins, going to some strange places between the snare, kick, and hat. “Right there,” he says, “I wanted to play a little more off-time accents, playing again with the guitarist. It’s having fun, talking back and forth to each other, and not just playing the snare on 2 and 4, and evolving the beat. That’s the type of drummer I like to be: change the mind set, and switch it up a little bit.”

It evolves even further at 2:35, as “Smash It!” goes into a strange, pulsing rock beat where something is missing – quite intentionally. “Most rock players will play that part with a double pedal, doing exactly what the guitar player is doing,” Moore observes. “I love double bass, but I don’t feel it needs to be added all the time. I want to take punk rock to a whole other level, beyond the ’80s and ’90s. The machine gun double bass beat is so obvious, but I’m going to play it different – being out of the box and still killing it. Creativity is the whole point.”

“Smash It” collapses into half time at 3:02, announced by big rock flams that Moore launches from around the kit (“when the song goes into half-time you have to make a stand”), followed by a spacious, patient, hat-prominent rock beat at 3:04. Then listen for just a few measures of punky funk that follow at 3:17. “Even though it’s a funky part, it makes sense for the song,” he says. “If you weren’t listening closely, you wouldn’t notice. You’d just be grooving with the music.”

As soon as the funk begins it ends, resolving itself into a solid 4/4 rock beat pushing forward until the end, mirroring the intro with a furious/fast snare fill that sets off one last halting hi-hat series. As Moore and his fellow Suicidals expected, this all works extremely well live.

“Oh, man, the crowd goes off and we bring the energy,” he grins. “For some people it’s hard to believe you’re playing live what they heard on the record: They don’t think it’s possible.”

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