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I Found the Best Bass For Metal

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Angel Switch, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. So, the title may be a bit misleading. This is more observation than fact. But has anyone else noticed that in the modern metal/punk-rock/punk hardcore/metalcore/deathcore scene, Stingrays kinda dominate? With the younger, more modern bands, it's usually a Jazz Bass or a Music Man Stingray in the bass players hands. I'm not saying it's the perfect bass for metal, but with Sterling having the new S.U.B. series, it's probably worth mentioning that the 'Ray and the Jazz Bass might be considered the industry standard.

    (Now, before you immediately jump to fight me, I'm thinking bands like Pierce the Veil, Avenged Sevenfold, Linkin Park, Escape the Fate, 3 Days Grace, Volbeat, Oh Sleeper, etc. Modern Punk and Metalcore. Not necessarily traditional, classic metal.)

    Do you agree? Disagree? Has anyone else noticed this? I see them a *ton* at shows. Thought it was worth bringing up. Thoughts and opinions?
  2. I see a lot of warwicks. Personally I think the Dingwall's are ideal for all the numetal bands and their extreme drop tunings.
  3. skychief


    Apr 27, 2011
    South Bay
    Misleading, indeed.
  4. thebassbuilder


    Mar 7, 2012
    Spartanburg SC
    guitar builder, Meyers Guitars
    I am with you on this. You do see a lot of Stingrays in this type of music, which I really like. When they use a Stigray, it seems you hear the bass player more in the mix. You hear that zing they are known for. As Muthafunk mentioned, you do see a lot Warwicks in the new metal sceen as well but they to have that signature topend that stands out in a mix, without being over powering. Misleading maybe but a good thread.
  5. DRock88


    Jul 10, 2013
    I'm surprised I don't see more ESP bassists. I mean ESP is generally a "metal" brand. I owned a five string Surveyor for a little while and it really felt great. Had good pickups, smooth neck, perfect action. I sold it as I wasn't loving the extra string and I found some stuff I needed more. I'll be honest though, a four string surveyor is on my list of soon to buy gear. Great Jazz feel to it as well. Any player could pick it up and like it, but rarely see them played out.
  6. Hamlet7768

    Hamlet7768 Here to chew gum and rock. Still have gum.

    Jun 5, 2011
    The best metal bass sounds I have heard I can best describe as "round," with a solid, defined sound. This is why P-basses don't work as well in metal nowadays; it's a more thumpy sound unless, like Steve Harris, you prioritize the setup for that round definition.

    I think the key is a bridge pickup, honestly. Whenever I've played a Jazz, I've found I get a better, tighter sound by rolling off the neck some. And the Stingray, of course, is all bridge pickup in its default configuration, and high output at that.
  7. I completely agree. I myself play a Music Man, but my next bass is certainly going to be an ESP. Both my guitarists in my band use ESPs, and I love their basses. It's really odd that they aren't seen more with the "pros."
  8. What about the Dingwall's do you think makes them better?
    (it's hard to convey tone over a forum message, so I will clarify: I'm not trying to challenge you and say that they aren't better. I'm just curious :) )
  9. I coulda swore that the best bass for metal was a big ol' search button, but that might just be me...

    In all seriousness, I haven't see a single metal band that I know use a Stingray.

    I have seen Warwicks, Dingwalls, a home-made 10 string bass, a fretless 6er, among others, but never once have I see a Stingray!
  10. As I said, we may have very different definitions of metal XP and I don't mean every single band I've seen. I just tend to see a lot of them :p
  11. If it has a tuning an octave below standard, I've probably heard it :D

    I can't say they're uncommon as many bands that I know outside of metal use them, in fact, I saw a band live the other day that was using one.

    EDIT: I see you mentioned Pierce the Veil. I, too, enjoy Pierce the Veil. Cheers to good (that's subjective) taste!
  12. *ToNeS*


    Jan 12, 2001
    Sydney AU
    Not sure what it is about Jazz basses... but they are undeniable in an abrasive context. Pounded through an Ampeg or Orange rig, you are just gonna dominate everybody.



  13. It's their extra long scale. It allows the lower tunings but keeps the tension a little more under control. Those sludgy drop Ab notes can have a little more control and sound cleaner IMO. YMMV.
  14. Hamlet7768

    Hamlet7768 Here to chew gum and rock. Still have gum.

    Jun 5, 2011
    Johnny Christ of Avenged Sevenfold uses one as well as Sterlings and a Schecter sig model. John Myung used one early in Dream Theater's career. Tim Commerford used it on Rage Against the Machine's first album. The bassists with Isis and Necrophagist appear to use them as well.

    They aren't ubiquitous, but they're out there.
  15. Systolic

    Systolic Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2009

    To be heard in a metal band (often) requires a mid heavy sound (usually.) Rays with a pick (more often than not) = Mid heavy sound (normally). So I can understand it.

    That being said: I use a Warwick in my metal band.
  16. I'm still under the firm belief that a P-bass is the best bass for metal. It cuts excellently and seems to respond brilliantly to dirt effects like OD, fuzz and distortion. Bands like High on Fire, Ghost, Mastodon, Red Fang, The Sword and Converge seriously know how to make a P-bass sound massive.
  17. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    The Fender Jazz bass is the best bass for EVERY SINGLE GENRE.

    Just kidding.

    I just like 'em.
  18. *ToNeS*


    Jan 12, 2001
    Sydney AU

    It always amazes me that such an embryonic design still slays in so many different capacities. I just recently purchased a Sandberg copy (one of their California TMs), and I could just play whole notes on this thing all day. Which I do.

    Whole notes.

    All day.

    Dramatic double-spaces for cartoonish emphasis.

  19. Damn, I forgot AX7.

    Those others I had no idea, will go see!
  20. attachment.


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