1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

ABSIV - 4-string polyphony

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by mbene085, Mar 6, 2018.

  1. mbene085

    mbene085 Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2018
    I've searched the forum, and there seems to be very little discussion of ABSIV's (Armistead Burwell Smith IV, aka Zach Smith) technique. He's utterly fascinating to watch. In this recent clip, he's doing a bunch of his usual tricks, arpeggiating and strumming chords, and something I haven't seen before - fretting a note on his G string with his right index finger while plucking the string with a flick of his right ring finger, to add a high note while continuing to play the other strings farther down the neck and picking them with his right thumb.

    I've seen people add right-handed tapping to achieve a similar effect, but never saw someone multitask fretting with a right-hand index finger, plucking the high note with their ring finger, and hitting the low notes with their thumb simultaneously.

    Far from gimmicky, it lets him hit notes that are far enough apart that they'd otherwise be unachievable on a 4-string.

    He's a mastery of 4-string polyphony. And the track is sweet too, of course.

    Mushroo and bholder like this.
  2. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    I have to listen to more of this. :thumbsup:
  3. mbene085

    mbene085 Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2018
    Check out the Pinback songs "Loro" and "Fortress". In both of those, ABSIV takes the higher parts on bass and Rob (the guitarist) plays a second bass. No guitars on the tracks at all.

    ABSIV also plays in 3 Mile Pilot, and a solo project he calls Systems Officer.

    I find his playing inspirational. It was a big factor in pushing me to explore bass techniques more (having been primarily a guitarist all my life).

  4. Clef_de_fa

    Clef_de_fa Guest

    Dec 25, 2011
    I see nothing spectacular or out of the ordinary

Share This Page