Enlarge Photo credit: Ekaterina Gorbacheva

Dave Lombardo is Releasing a Solo Drum Album


Ex-Slayer, current Testament/Mr. Bungle/Venamoris drummer Dave Lombardo is undeniably one of the most revered and important figures in the metal scene — especially if you’re a drummer. And while his career’s been going on since the formation of Slayer back in 1981, the man’s never recorded a solo album.

Well, it turns out that’s all gonna change on May 5, as he’s set to release his debut solo effort Rites of Percussion via Mike Patton‘s record label Ipecac Recordings. Lombardo said the idea to record a percussion album came from Patton himself back in the 90s, saying he ultimately didn’t have the time until the entire world suddenly had all the time in the world during COVID lockdowns.

“[Mike] Patton originally gave me the idea as far back as 1998. He introduced me to Tito Puente’s Top Percussion album. I was already familiar with Tito and was a bit shocked that Patton was so musically diverse, and that he surrounded himself with musicians of the same mindset. That inspired me. I have had ideas that I’ve recorded on cassette over the years, but Patton kept insisting that I had to do a ‘drum album.’ So, the idea behind the album is years in the making. I just had to find the right time—for me—to do it.

“When the pandemic hit, I thought, ‘Well, I can’t tour now.’ I immediately started working on the record. It was one of the greatest experiences I’ve ever had. I had my studio, all my drums. Nothing was in storage for once! My home became a place where I could be free and creative. On the one hand, the touring part of my livelihood had been taken away, but on the other, I finally had the time to educate myself on different software and recording techniques. It was a very educational and gratifying experience.”

As you’ll hear in the album’s first single posted below, titled “Journey of the Host,” the 13-track album will have an almost “film score-like” feel to it. Mixed last year by Lombardo’s son, David A. Lombardo, the record will feature a large concert bass drum, a timpani, a grand piano, and a flock of shakers, maracas, Chinese and symphonic gongs, Native American drums, congas, timbales, bongos, batás, wood blocks, djembes, ibos, darbukas, octobans, cajóns, and cymbals.

…If you’re a drummer, I bet all of those words made sense.

Rites of Percussion won’t be available until May 5, but you can preorder a copy today via Ipecac Recordings in a number of formats and variants.

Dave Lombardo, Rites of Percussion

  1. Initiatory Madness
  2. Separation from the Sacred
  3. Inner Sanctum
  4. Journey of the Host
  5. Maunder in Liminality
  6. Despojo
  7. Interfearium
  8. Blood Let
  9. Warpath
  10. Guerrero
  11. Vicissitude
  12. Omiero
  13. Animismo
Dave Lombardo is Releasing a Solo Drum Album
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