Kahzan Cymbals should be well known amongst drummers around the country by now. Based in Melbourne, they’ve been offering great value for money, handmade cymbals for some time now and what they offer is fantastic at their price point. Two of the most successful lines are the Tribal and the Vintage and now, there are some new splashes.
TRIBAL VS VINTAGE
The Tribal and Vintage families offer the full range of cymbals for drummers including 10” and 12” splashes. The new release for both lines is the addition of 8” splash cymbals and having played the splashes from both lines, my pick are now these new 8-inchers. I’ve always been a fan a smaller splash cymbals because unless a 10” or 12” cymbal is quite thin, it can possess some unwanted overtones that can really stand out – in a bad way. These 8” cymbals aren’t super thin but due to their size, there’s less of that issue and they still possess the projection you need from a cymbal this small.
The Tribal splash features a brilliant/polished finish on both sides with very minimal scoring or hammering. The Vintage by contrast, couldn’t be more different with a matte lathed underside and a raw, un-lathed finish on top that features distinct hammerings. In the character stakes, the Vintage takes the win for sure. It’s an interesting looking thing. Both feature large bells considering the 8” size and their profiles are pretty much identical.
You wouldn’t call either of these splashes heavy porkers but they’re not super thin either – just a nice medium weight. The weight, when designing a splash, is an important thing. It will influence the amount of note and ‘bell’ like quality in the finished product. This particular Vintage is slightly heavier than its shiny cousin at 206 grams, the Tribal coming in lighter at 176 grams. Both the splashes have a distinct note when struck. The Tribal possesses a slight amount more wash in it’s character with some notable overtones but the Vintage is dryer and darker with little overtones at all. This lack of overtones, combined with a lower pitch produces a note is actually more pronounced overall. It’s not unpleasant though. Both splashes remain musical but the Tribal is slightly angrier, with attitude and a brighter tone overall. Curiously, both splashes are loud and really cut. For the size, they’re happy to make themselves heard. This will be a bit of a selling point for some drummers. In the mix, they decay very quickly too.
Whilst playing these two splashes I had the urge – just for fun and in the name of experimentation – to investigate out some other uses for them. The fact remains that, especially at this price point, if you were so inclined, either one of these splashes could be another effect somewhere else on the kit. These two are robust enough to get a little fancy and I tried using them as an auxiliary set of hi hats. I must say, they’re super cool – sharp with a trashy quality when opened and surprisingly loud given the size. You even get a nice chick under foot too.
Another great use is stacking. Stacking is all the rage at the moment and an 8” splash is the perfect stacker on top of another cymbal. I tried stacking on top of a few such as a 16” crashes and upside down in the middle of a china cymbal. The results really differ depending on how tight you clamp the felts down but again, this just proved to me what cymbals like these can do if you think outside the square.
THE PRICE IS RIGHT
Overall, these two are really cool and I’d be interested to see what I could do with them over time in my set up. Regardless of their sound, size and feel though, nothing negative can be said of their price. Period. I can’t think of another cymbal that sounds this good for the same price. This just means that drummers of any level can dive into the effects cymbal world and all for the price of a t-shirt. I only wish Kahzan were around when I first started playing drums.
Hits and Misses
Projection and cut considering size
Distinct note won’t be to everyone’s taste
Still not quite a match for real top end rivals, but it’s closer than you’d think