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REVIEW: Promark FireGrain drumsticks

Laura  Barnes
REVIEW: Promark FireGrain drumsticks

Hickory is the most popular choice of wood to make drumsticks out of thanks to its durability and resilience. With its brand new FireGrain range, Promark by D’Addario believes it has bolstered the sturdiness of classic hickory sticks even more.

Referring to the FireGrain range as “the most durable hickory sticks we’ve ever made”, Promark has introduced a “revolutionary heat-tempering process” that is says transforms ordinary hickory sticks into “precision tools with unprecedented durability”.

With such bold claims, how could a drummer resist testing out a pair?

The new FireGrain range comes in Classic 7A, 5A, 5B and 2B models, as well as Rebound 5A and 5B, and Forward 5A and 5B. I reviewed a pair in my usual size, 7A.
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The first thing I noticed about the sticks were that they measured up a little shorter than my usual pair. Out of the all the 7As that I was currently using (Stagg SM7A, Promark ActiveGrip, and these new Classic FireGrain sticks) these were the shortest in length, measuring 15 3/8” or 390mm.

For the first couple of minutes of holding them in my hand, I presumed it would take me a little while to adjust to extending my reach just that tiny bit more to get the right feel from them.

I must admit, I was overthinking this somewhat, probably because I had my “reviewing” hat on. After a few minutes of playing with these sticks, not only did I not notice the slight length difference, but I completely forgot I was using a new pair of sticks at all.

They felt instantly comfortable. The first time of using them, I had a really good practice session running through some rudiments such as a four stroke ruff and five, seven and nine stroke rolls. It wasn't until afterwards that I realised how these new drum sticks had helped me have such a successful practice.

The oval wood tips add to the great sound of these sticks, giving you a dark, warm tone.

Now, I’m not suggesting that these sticks will make you suddenly start playing like Buddy Rich, but I started to understand what Promark meant by calling the new range “precision tools”. They’re a strong pair of sticks, but you feel completely in control of them.

Looking at the sticks and hearing about the heat-tempering process might make you expect that they feel different, maybe heavier. But while the hickory has been hardened by flames, the sticks manage to keep their original weight, balance and feel. This means you get a classic feel with the great attack and response from a typical lightweight 7A, but the durability of something that would usually be a little heavier. I really noticed this as I used them, and after a week of playing, they barely had a scratch.

As an added bonus, from a completely superficial point of view, the flame-grilled wood looks pretty badass too!

The oval wood tips add to the great sound of these sticks, giving you a dark, warm tone. I spent a week with these sticks, playing rudiments and running through various drumming styles across an acoustic kit. I also used them on an electronic kit, as well as a rubber practice pad. Each time, I was pleasantly surprised by them, and then quickly forgot all about them as I delved into the music. To me, that’s what makes a great drumstick.

With the FireGrain range available in such a wide range of models, there’s bound to be a pair to suit almost every drummer out there. And with an RRP of £17.49, it’s certainly worth grabbing a pair.

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Check out our other Promark reviews below:

REVIEW: Promark Matt Halpern signature drumsticks

REVIEW: Promark ActiveGrip drumsticks

Tags: drumsticks , d'addario , promark , Reviews , FireGrain

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