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Craaazy noises with instruments

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Aaron Saunders, Sep 9, 2004.

  1. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Today in class, we were doing sonic landscapes and we were allowed to use anything we wanted, as long as we didn't play in instrument in a conventional way. eg, no strumming, no plucking, and no conventional slapping. It had to convey a kind of theme/idea, and through a lot of experimentation, I got some crazy noises out of my bass and another fellow's Washburn Taurus (which is a freaking slap MACHINE, I love it!).

    So far, I've come up with (on a bass)...
    1. Scraping a credit card (student card for the poor crowd like me) up and down the strings (only works if you've got rounds or rougher flats like TI's).
    2. Sliding harmonics
    3. Hitting an open note and bending it behind the nut or the neck itself.
    4. Drumming on the body (if you've got a bass that's really resonant, it'll get the strings going wildly and you can get different tones from different parts of the body).
    5. Slapping right in front of the saddle with a finger right in front of the nut.
    6. Remote control above the pickups (in between them seems to be the sweet spot).

    I've done all of these clean, but they really get crazy when you start to use effects on them. I use the following effects for best results:

    1. Wah, delay, distortion (trebly guitar kind), or the raggh-ragggggh kind of bass distortion.
    2. Delay (2 sec) and reverb (at once). Very whale-like with muted plucks on the E and A and proper phrasing around the 7th and 9th fret harmonics on the D and G respectively.
    3. I prefer this one clean, actually.
    4. Reverb might be cool, but too much colouration of any kind would ruin the sound. Very cool sound clean.
    5. Delay. Very heart-beat like. Rockin' cool!
    6. Wah, all the wah you can muster. For some reason, the digitech doesn't do anything to the sound with the remote (anyone know why?), but wah-ing it at variable speeds and intensities is just...intensely cool.
  2. fatbassjazzer


    Feb 27, 2004
    Very cool man, I've scraped a remote control against my strings and it kind of sounds like racecar.
  3. Benjamin Strange

    Benjamin Strange Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    New Orleans, LA
    Owner / Tech: Strange Guitarworks
    Ever tried using a sexual device near your pickups? Pretty cool, especially if it's got multiple settings. Don't knock it before you've tried it.
  4. Passinwind

    Passinwind I Know Nothing Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    "Bowing" techniques:

    Use your fingernail, or the tip of your finger, very near the bridge, till your extremities are shredded. You can force infinitely sustained notes with practice. Try it above the nut, or behind the bridge saddles, as well.

    Use a glass bottle, with the paper label still on it, in your right hand, while palm muting with the right hand, and forcing harmonics with your left hand.

    Better yet, use a soft metal slide (brass works well), also in your right hand. Try not damping behind the slide, and instead encourage feedback from the "wrong" side of the slide. You can get chords from one string with enough persistence.

    These all work best on fretless, IME.
  5. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Not much new there - been there, done that :p

    Some more ideas:
    - Lightly slap (or sometimes i suse my knuckles) the back of the neck and use some od/dist with it and once in a while play some notes above it. My E and B strings give off very strange sounds with this
    - Try taperwounds and play the E or rather the B very-ver close to the bridge, with a strong pluck. If you tune/detune the bass meanwhile, it should be even better
    - Detune while the harmonics ring out
    - etc I dont remember now, and have to go
  6. fastplant


    Sep 26, 2002
    I used to mess around with different ways of playing like that on guitar. In my old band I had a guitar solo that I would put on a ton of distortion and press the D string till it touched the pickup and then plucked behind it real fast while pressing harder and lighter. I'll see if I have a clip of it and post it. It was a really cool sound. They played our song on the radio up here in Hartford on this local music show and I got a lot of responses on it.
  7. mr e

    mr e

    Nov 17, 2003
    power drill...
  8. fastplant


    Sep 26, 2002
  9. mr e

    mr e

    Nov 17, 2003
    no really, right through the body!!!
    perhaps a sawzall
    or a grinder
    so many ideas...

    of course these are performed only once,
    so try it on a pawn shop special
  10. with the volume all the way down tap a note then quickly turn up the volume then turn the volume down, makes it sound kind of like a sythn.
  11. Step one: Insert drumstick under and over bass/guitar strings

    Step two: turn distortion to max setting

    Step three: Take acid and leave your bass infront of the speaker for 4 hours. Your very own sonic youth show!
  12. Against Will

    Against Will Supporting Member

    Dec 10, 2003
    Big Sound Central
    Echoplex + Anything.

    One of my friends had one that he built. I wanted him to do the same for me, but I had no money to pay for the stuff.

  13. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    Well, at least that way if my kids ever find the toy box, I can just say that they are for music.
  14. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Never tried it, personally. As a 16 year old, getting one would be a bit difficult. And just imagine, when my parents walk in the room - "Oh, hey mom! Oh, this? I was just, uh, trying something."
  15. Brad Barker

    Brad Barker

    Apr 13, 2001
    berkeley, ca
    maybe i should start asking the girls around my dorm if i can borrow their vibrators.

    that'd be interesting.
  16. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA