Whether bright and shiny, subtly matte, lathed, dark or mysterious, the way a cymbal looks has more than a visual effect on a music performance. Cymbals are complicated instruments that are crafted according to standards that have been improved upon for centuries. From the angle of the cymbal, the size of its bell and the metal alloys used, a cymbal can produce a wide range of sounds, tones and harmonics to suit the drummer and music being played.
The finish used on a cymbal has more than an aesthetic function. In fact, the finish can be the finishing touch on a cymbal, giving each cymbal style or series a voice and overtone of its own. Unfinished cymbals have a dirty, trashy or otherwise dark feel to the sound, one that is especially evident in cymbals that are hammered by hand or roughly lathed. The Meinl Byzance Dark Splash cymbal is a great example of the sound quality and tone available in a cymbal that is unfinished.
Finished cymbals provide an entirely different sound to the drumming continuum than an unfinished cymbal. Polished, buffed and lathed to perfection, these cymbals give the sound a more refined, glassy and clear tone. Finished cymbals epitomize the drum set, shining in their splendor amidst the toms, snare and bass drum. The Sabian APX Cymbal gives a quality and dynamic sound while not compromising volume or appearance.
Cymbals bring a finishing touch to any drum solo or fill, giving songs a harmonic tone and emotional pulse through crashes, splashes and hard-hitting rhythm. Whether a finished, hammered, unfinished or otherwise specially-crafted cymbal, the final appearance and finish on the instrument can be the final note to a supreme musical composition.