Alex Landenburg

ARTIST SPOTLIGHT: ALEX LANDENBURG.

Mastering anything from ferocious thrash beats and insane double bass cannonry to the most fundamental and rock solid grooves, Alex Landenburg is the definition of a versatile metal drummer. If he’s not doing clinics or otherwise traveling the world in the service of groove, you’ll find him on the drum riser or in the studio with bands like Mekong Delta, Cyhra and Kamelot.

Name: Alex Landenburg
Location: Saarbrücken, Germany

If we start by rewinding to the very beginning: How and when did you discover your passion for music?
I grew up in a very musical household, in the sense that there was always music playing and that in my family, we often talked about artists and specific music. My parents listened to a huge variety of styles, including lots of ‘70s prog like Genesis, but also Queen, Elvis or the Beatles. I still remember the 1985 Live Aid as a very little kid. Seeing Queen on that stage, in front of all these people, I knew that’s what I wanted to do, too.

What are some of the drummers that you think helped shape the musician you are today?
I could list a hundred names here. Phil Collins was a big one for me, but growing up as a real metal kid, it was also the usual suspects: Lars Ulrich, Nicko McBrain, Nick Menza etc. Then at about age 15, I really got into progressive metal. Mike Portnoy and Mark Zonder were super important. Also Deen Castronovo, Simon Phillips, Jeff Porcaro, Terry Bozzio and Steve Smith were extremely important to my development, but the biggest impact probably had and still has Vinnie Colaiuta had.

Your history with different bands range from thrash and power to modern metal. Is there one style in which you feel at most “home”?
Actually, I feel really at home in progressive metal. I always try to give everything I play a bit of a proggy edge, of course always making sure it’s still musical and supporting the song.

How would you describe your style of drumming?
My goal is to merge technicality and interesting drumming with musicality while always supporting the music and the song. Like a sculptor, I want to carve out the structure of a piece of music and make it clearer and more impactful. The question if I always manage to meet that goal, however, is for others to answer!

You have been doing this for quote some time now. If you had to pick out some highlights so far in you career, what would the they be?
My first real big tour with Annihilator, following the footsteps of none other than Mike Mangini at the time, was an amazing experience. Also playing with Stratovarius, alongside Jens Johansson of Yngwie Malmsteen fame, was simply incredible. Another real highlight was recording the most recent live DVD with Kamelot in 2018. Also working with Luca Turilli and co-producing the “Cinematic and Live” album was something I will carry with me forever. A different sort of highlight was my 2019 clinic tour in China for Mapex. Meeting all these young Chinese drummers and seeing the excitement in them was truly amazing.

If you weren’t a professional musician, what do you think you’d do for a career?
I would have been a pro tennis player. At least that’s what I’m telling myself.

Looking back on the experience of sampling these EZX libraries, what are your biggest takeaways?
It was such a big learning experience. On any prior project I was involved in, we always took the sound aspects like tuning the drums, the right choice of heads and mic positioning very seriously, but on these recordings, we went so much further with these details. And it really shows. The sounds we recorded are nothing short of amazing. Also, sampling all these instruments at all these velocities gave me another perspective as to how many different sounds you can actually get out of a ride cymbal or a pair of hi-hats. Many things I used to do subconsciously I had to now really figure out, because they had to be reproduced consistently. I’ve learned so much about the instrument again. It was a great experience.

And listening back to the final product – what was that like and did everything turn out like you had initially envisioned?
It was very emotional. I will never forget when I heard the first audio samples of our work. Some of the cymbals we sampled for this product were from my first batch of Zildjians I received when I originally got the endorsement, which were pre-selected from the factory and then hand selected by me. That was one of the best days of my life and now these supreme cymbals are immortalized and that’s just beautiful. On top of that, we also sampled my number one “go to” snare, the Mapex Sledgehammer, and it turned out better than I ever could have imagined. It goes for all the other instruments we recorded as well. They all sounded great and Jakob and I were able to capture these sounds 100%. Finally, now to be able to play these instruments also with my electronic drums, is just a dream come true.

Duality EZX
WHEN TWO WORLDS COLLIDE.

Check out the two Duality EZXs here:

Duality I | Duality II

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