Pearl Crystal Beat Acrylic Drums: “Not Just Another transparent Trap Kit for the Hipster Set”

I don’t know about you guys, but I can’t swing a drumstick half an inch without bumping into some kind of hipster and their acrylic drums. Just go into any organic java roastery in Williamsburg and all you see are kids in tight pants just drumming away on clear shells. Your local bodega doesn’t even carry grab and go wood snares anymore, and the public transportation: in a few years none of it will be opaque. I mean, seriously, what’s the deal with all these hipsters and their acrylic drums?


But in all seriousness acrylic drums are pretty uncommon amongst crusty metalheads and “hipsters” alike, pointlessness of that term notwithstanding, so I’m not sure if Pearl’s marketing needs to worry about reclaiming the see-through shell’s righteousness from some group that has supposedly co-opted it. As far as I’m concerned, these future-fantastic beauties have been badass since the Zeppelin and the Flag* rocked them decades ago.

The point of all this is that Pearl is back in the Acrylic market with these new Crystal Beat drums, bringing back from retirement the name of the company’s original acrylic line from ’73. However, these drums aren’t a reissue. All of the hardware is designed with the benefits of modern innovation. Take a look.


  • Seamless Acrylic Shells
  • 6mm Tom And Snare Drum Shells
  • 7mm Bass Drum Shells
  • Acrylic Bass Drum Hoops w/matching Finish
  • Recessed Bass Drum Claws w/rubber Lining
  • 1.6mm Triple Flanged Hoops
  • 2 Ply Clear Tom Batter Heads
  • 1 Ply Clear Tom Reso Heads
  • 1 Ply Clear Bass Drum Heads w/self-muffling Ring
  • Optimount Suspension System
  • Air Suspension Floor Tom Feet
  • Molded Rubber Gaskets
  • Telescoping Spurs W/rubber Or Spike Tip
  • Beautiful Crystal Clear Finishes
  • Limited 2 Year Warranty

The Pearl Crystal Beat drumsets are available in “Ruby Red,” “Tangerine Glass,” and “Ultra Clear,” which is the transparent equivalent of of Spinal Tap’s “none more black,” I suppose. The pricing will start at $900. For more info, head to Pearl’s website.

*I couldn’t actually find any photos of Bill Stevenson playing on an acrylic kit in Black Flag, but I’m positive that he did.


Written by

Chris Alfano has written about music and toured in bands since print magazines and were popular. Once in high-school he hacked a friend's QBasic stick figure fighting game to add a chiptune metal soundtrack. Random attractive people still give him high-fives about that.

Latest comments
  • always wondered what these things sounded like. do they sound a lot diffrent then say a typical wood set?

  • Mike Portnoy used a clear kit when playing with Adrenaline Mob…

    • He used one when he was in Dream Theater as well.

      • i couldnt remember, thanks for confirming that! (i didnt want to look a complete dweeb!)

  • “I couldn’t actually find any photos of Bill Stevenson playing on an acrylic kit in Black Flag, but I’m positive that he did.”

    Sorry, but you’re only half right. There was a Black Flag drummer who used a clear acrylic kit, but it was Robo, not Stevenson.

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