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Fundamentals of playing metal?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Funky Fatcat, Feb 21, 2008.

  1. Funky Fatcat

    Funky Fatcat

    Jul 29, 2005
    A band wants me to fill in for their bassist who doesn't live here anymore and i don't normally play metal but would like to get into it...What are the fundamental things i need to know to be a good metal bassist?
  2. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Supporting Member

    Listen to metal songs that they do.
    Then listen to Geezer Butler, Steve Harris, Cliff Burton, you know ...metal players.
    Copy them and soon you will be able to play metal.
    Music is Music. Only "Styles" are different . Learn the style, play the music.
  3. Choosh


    Jan 14, 2008
    Downtune your bass atleast a step, and thicker gauges help.
  4. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Supporting Member

  5. Funky Fatcat

    Funky Fatcat

    Jul 29, 2005
    any scales that are commonly used or anything like that?
  6. gonzoguri


    Feb 12, 2008
    diminished and natural minor are probably the most common

    you don´t have to downtune necessary if they don´t

    playing smoothly with a lot of amplification will help you to keep the speed without problems wiht your tendons, also don´t use a very high position for the bass or your right wrist will suffer
  7. mutedeity


    Aug 27, 2007
    The same things you need to be good at any other type of music. Practice, technichal development and professionalism.
  8. BackwaterBass


    Feb 18, 2008
    Headbanging, mean faces, and heavy drinking. Everything else is just gravy. :bassist:
  9. aeolian phrygian and the uh minor one with the b3 b7 (harmonic or melodic minor)

    or you could just play pentatonic minor/blues and just randomly throw in b2/2 or b6/6 to make riffs
  10. What kind of metal?
  11. This is a really good question. Radically different advice applies if we are talking about Helloween or Sunn O))).
  12. IanStephenson

    IanStephenson UnRegistered User

    Apr 8, 2006
    scales? No. Scales are for those jazz posers. The notes you need is open E and open A.

    Seriously I play a lot of classic rock (what would have been metal in it's day). The left hand stuff is typically basic. On the other hand our picking hand is going to get a work out. Lots of pedaling root notes, but you need speed and stamina. Concentrate on your picking 8th and 16th notes (and octaves can work nicely).

    If you do need a scale it's generally a pentatonic.

  13. mutedeity


    Aug 27, 2007
    Oh dear. Follow this advice and you can expect to be mediocre at best.
  14. El-Bob


    Oct 22, 2006
    Hamilton, ON
    indeed. metal is much to broad to give advice on. we need specifics
  15. speed metal, power metal, metalcore, thrash metal, math metal, doom, grind, black metal, death metal, sludge?

    tons of choices.

    all that remains to nightwish to zao to slayer to dillenger escape plan to manowar to agoraphobic nosebleed to deathspell omega to at the gates to isis?

    it's a big world out there. if you're playing grind. don't worry about the notes. just play loud and fast. take that from someone who's played much grind in his day.

    the most troublesome (read: hardest) will be speed, power, math and death. sure part of it will have your touch. bass in metal is as hard as you want to make it, either you can go all john myung style or go simple and fast.
  16. Foxworthy925

    Foxworthy925 Guest

    Feb 24, 2007
    Bay Area, CA
    HA your kidding right? Depending on the genre, metal bassists have to be some of the most technical, well trained musicians of any genre I've heard. Ever listened to Brain Drill, Origin, Blotted Science, Cannibal Corpse, or Decrepit Birth?

    Oh and I'm sorry, Classic rock was not, is not, nor will ever be metal in any way shape or form.
  17. El-Bob


    Oct 22, 2006
    Hamilton, ON

    well said
  18. The_Orlonater


    Jun 6, 2007
    Harmonic Minor and the Phygrian Mode are very metal! :bassist::)
  19. The_Orlonater


    Jun 6, 2007
    A lot of Death Metal has elements of Jazz and Classical. Just listen to some death metal bands like Death, Atheist, Autopsy, Necrophagist, Nile, Opeth, Cannibal Corpse, Cryptopsy, Cynic, Gorguts, and more. This is all good stuff.
  20. The_Orlonater


    Jun 6, 2007

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