Surdus are the heartbeat of every samba reggae band. Each drum is played with alternate beats. Surdu 1 is tuned with a low sound and plays in the first beat, Surdu 2 is tuned a little higher than the previous one and responds with the second beat. The heartbeat is the rhythm and conduction of energy, it pushes the rhythm forward and provides a solid foundation for the other patterns. The surdu players maintain the rhythm of the other members.
The Dobra is smaller in diameter than either of the surdos. It plays a mid-range tone and hits on the syncopated rhythm. The Dobra interacts with the Surdos and Repis to create some of Batala’s signature rhythms. These drums often lead the band's choreography.
The Repinique (also known as Repi) is a small, high-pitched drum played with flexible plastic sticks. The repinique is responsible for Batala’s fastest and most complex rhythms. Always accompanies the song melody with the dobra drum, with a series of dry and cutting sounds. Thanks to playing with two sticks, it has greater flexibility and marks the majority of changes.
The Caixa is a traditional snare drum worn low around the waist. Referred to as the engine of the band, the Caixa line maintains a constant rhythm beneath all of the other drums, driving the band's energy.