Hot new percussion products from NAMM 14
After attending an amazing NAMM show then a week long (well needed) vacation in sunny California, I am now finally back in my office and beginning to digest the music product overload that is The NAMM Show. In no particular order, here are my top 5 products that I had the pleasure of trying out at NAMM.
1. LP Cajon Pedal (LP1500)
In my opinion the first wave of cajon pedals was a bit of an experimental time with some faulty mechanisms and beaters that were a bit on the hard side. Now however, it seems at though LP have got the formula just right. I managed to try a couple of different cajon pedals at NAMM14 which were good pedals but it wasn’t until I headed up to the LP booth and found the new LP Cajon Pedal which seems to have the formula just right.
Lets start with the pedals mechanism. The pedal features a smooth, quiet 3′ cable system and a specially designed mounting plate. When playing, it is smooth and gives you the feeling that you can get your foot to do whatever your head wants it to do. Playing light was easy and getting a good solid bass tone was achievable without much effort. It also features spring adjustments to cater to a wide range of playing styles. The patent-pending beater creates a sound that is as close to that of a palm striking the front plate as I have heard. This is without doubt the best cajon pedal I have played.
MSRP: $249.99 – www.lpmusic.com
2. The Dube
One of the booths that was hoping with activity this year was that of The Dube. The Dube is a cube percussion instrument that was invented by ex Premier League and England footballer Dion Dublin. It has four playable sides each producing their own unique sound.
You can choose either an Acoustic or Pro Dube, the Pro being internally mic’d, enabling you to amplify the sound with an XLR connection. Both are available in four sizes 9”, 12”, 15”, 18” and in base colors Natural, Black or White. The Dube can also be totally customized with your personal color schemes and designs.
I had a go playing a good range of sizes and was totally blown away by the range of tones. What I really liked was the deep bass tone which sounds almost like an Udu at times and the high tones that have a nice resonance with a good attack. Acoustically this unique drum sounds amazing but when you plug it in is when it really comes to life.
Dion and the gang had one of the most unique and stylish drums at the NAMM show. Their booth was continually hopping with the likes of Aaron Spears, Karl Brazil, Luis Conte, Josh Devine, and Mike Dolbear which is a testament to how serious of a product The Dube is.
From 165.00GBP – www.thedube.com
3. Pintech Phoenix 14″ Dual Zone Snare
Ever since Ryan Guard took over operations at Pintech, things are just getting better and better for the electronic percussion company. Pintech were named as “Best in Show” at NAMM 14 and if you get a chance to try there amazing electro products you will know why.
The Phoenix Dual Zone Snare was a NAMM highlight and a joy to try out. The snare has dual zone capabilities which makes it easy to have more that one sound at one time, reinforced triggers, sensitivity controls on the head and rim trigger, and Pintech’s exclusive ultra quiet mesh heads. It is available in red, black, and chrome and comes with 2 mesh heads, and 2 silentrim rubber hoop trims.
When playing the Phoenix you will immediately be blown away by the feel of it. The mesh head technology make the drum feel almost like the real thing but with a nice bounce to make it feel faster. The sensitivity is amazing, with even the quietist hits being picked up.
Pintech are making big waves in the electronic percussion world and with their products featuring at the Super Bowl 2014 halftime show, the sky is the limit for this fast growing company.
From $449.00 – www.pintechworld.com
4. LP Americana Octo-Snare Cajon, 12″
The Octo-Snare cajon is constructed using hand-selected, plantation grown Baltic Birch, which is highly durable and incredibly resonant. Each cajon is carefully made by hand and when you see and play one you can see good attention to detail.
The Octo-Snare is perfect for adding to your hybrid percussion set-up or taking to a small jam session. You can play it with your hands or with brushes depending on the sound you are looking for. This cajon product is a total winner if you ask me.
MSRP: 199.00 – www.lpmusic.com
5. Sela Pro Cajon
This new innovation by Sela sets the bar to a new hight when it comes to top of the range cajons. This beauty is constructed from high quality birch with rounded maple corners giving it a solid build. It comes with a choice of three front plates, Satin Nut, Tineo, and Zebrano all with the own unique look and sound.
The real touch of magic with this cajon though comes with its amazing snare on and off mechanism. There is a leaver on the top left side that allows you to easily switch the snare on and off giving you essentially, two cajons in one. It is clear a lot of development has gone into this mechanism. It feels strong and durable like it will last for a life time.
The sound of the Sela Pro gives you a solid bass tone and a nice full snare with a good separation between the two. The snare also has an a adjuster screw inside so you can decide how much rattle you want. Many additional tones are also achievable with the use of the foot.
This cajon puts Sela firmly into the big league.
Available in March 2014 – www.sela-cajon.com