Groove Analysis: John Stanier's Odd Chops
Hard-rocking groover John Stanier shows his versatility while getting a style and odd-time workout on Tomahawk’s latest release, Oddfellows.
The title track is mostly in 7/4 with occasional escapes to more comfortable-feeling sections of 4/4, as seen in the second line. The bridge has a different 7/4 pattern that’s similar to the first but uses Stanier’s floor tom in place of his hi-hats.
“Rise Up Dirty Waters”
On this track we hear Stanier laying down some uptempo swing. Yes, that’s right, as in “jazz.” Though the drum sound isn’t right for the genre (slamming rock kick drum), he sounds quite jazzy. According to Stanier, though, the non-conformist sound was intentional.
For “South Paw,” Stanier borrows the Motown groove that’s characterized by the snare landing on all the beats and the bass drum punctuating the &’s underneath. Though his groove is the only thing reminiscent of Motown in the song, this type of groove adds a lot of forward momentum at this bright tempo.
On “Waratorium,” Stanier plays a repeating groove in 6/4 that he breaks up with the rare fill, as seen in the second line. A more slamming variation of the groove has him playing sloshy hi-hats and omitting some unnecessary notes.