Français: : Great drummers

Mac Brain Nicko

Musicians or bands:

Iron Maiden, Trust, Streetwalkers, Pat Travers, Stretch, Blaze Bayley, Nigel Green, Paul Di'Anno, Roger Chapman, John "Charlie" Whitney, Bob Tench, Jon Plotel, Pete Cowling, Fredy Studer, Doug Sampson, Tony Wilson, Tony Parsons, Dennis Wilcock, Dennis Stratton, Mick McKenna, Bert Hermiston, Clive Burr

Biography and commentary:

Born in 1954, Nicko McBrain is one of the first virtuoso drummers of heavy metal (Iron Maiden drummer since 1983, more than 100 million of albums sold). Jazz trained and self-taught, he “classised” and invented many phrases now retaken by all metal drummers. His playing, full of ornaments, improvised variations and breaks, is reminiscent of a Celtic inspiration, found also in the playing of the two Iron Maiden soloist guitarists with whom he often plays melodically in unison on the toms. His set is one of the most impressive that exists, aligning 9 toms in descent (which pass over the Hi-Hat) which made Nicko one of the first drummers to master at this level the playing with arpeggios and 3 limbs rolls. He is also one of the few metal drummers who still plays with a single bass drum pedal and when you see how fast, you're surprised (others would play the same phrases with double pedal!). His mastery of dynamics ("ghost notes", crescendos, etc.) and the playing with chabada in Independence, is reminiscent of the funk and Hard rock pioneers like John Bonham or Ian Paice (but this control is often overlooked by recent metal drummers). Nicko gives master classes around the world and has participated in instructional videos.

Marc De Douvan, publication in French: January 3, 2006 (for the translation in English: July 12, 2015)

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© 2005 Marc de Douvan Crédits Mentions légales