Recently I was asked to test out two of Evan’s drumheads newest marching heads: the Evans Hybrid-S Marching Snare Drum Head and the Evans System Blue Tenor Drum Heads. Now, I’m fairly particular about my drum heads, as any serious player would be, and I definitely have my ‘brand of choice’. In my mind, the test drive of these new heads would serve only to reinforce the worthy-ness of ‘my brand’. It’s my pleasure to report however, that this was not the case.
The first head I tried was the Hybrid-S snare head. I had heard that the Hybrid heads in general were fantastic, but again, I was skeptical. My skepticism disappeared though after the very first stroke I played and all I could think about was how good it felt. The head really responded well and made playing several more continuous passages seem effortless. It has a slight give to it when struck by the stick that both absorbs my energy and produces a very full sound that was pleasantly warm. The drum seemed to come alive with this Hybrid head. Even when playing out on the edge, the head still returned exceptional snare response. I actually loved it! Even better still, this head sounds big. Currently teaching a smaller line, I couldn’t help but wish I had had this head for marching band season. Up close or far away the Hybrid-S head maintained sensitivity, clarity, dynamic control, and projection. To seal the deal, I played it several more times after the initial test and the head faithfully retained its tuning. The bottom line here is that Evans new Hybrid-S head not only met expectations, it raised them.
Excited from my Hybrid-S experience, I was anxious to try out the new Evans System Blue tenor heads. Being primarily a tenor player, I was very eager to get the heads on and tuned up. Before I even put the heads on I was intrigued by the look of this head. A blue to clear fade that not only looked cool but serves a purpose: it allow players to recognize proper playing zones. Once the heads were on it was obvious that like the Hybrid-S, the System Blue heads wouldn’t disappoint. The first thing I noticed with these heads was the tonal clarity from drum to drum. Each drum really spoke well both by itself and when played during around patterns. These heads provided a dark sound with real projection that allows for the tenor voice to be heard within an ensemble. As with the Hybrid-S, the System Blue Tenor heads beautifully maintained their tuning. Most complaints I have with tenor heads is that they either don’t blend well or they don’t have a full sound. The Evans System Blue tenor heads accomplish both. In my opinion, it’s the sound that the marching percussion world has been waiting for.
No doubt that Evans has definitely brought Christmas to the marching percussion world early this year with the addition of these two great heads. As for “my brand of choice”. . . . well, I never said I wouldn’t “make the switch“.