Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Splash Neely, Feb 1, 2004.

  1. Splash Neely

    Splash Neely

    Jan 27, 2004
    Hello,very nice website/forum!I've already found a few mentions of Ruins and other "out there"bassists so this should be a great site to frequent.OK,for those who are still reading:

    RUINS:Aside from basic rock and funk,this is the group that really inspires me.I know there is ALOT of music out there,and I personally am of the belief that everything has been done before in some fashion,but on the whole I've never really heard anyone use the bass like RUINS.I'm recently aware of Lightning Bolt,but they are more hardcore pummeling and not as varied as RUINS.

    I know RUINS have gone through at least 4 bassists since the beginning.My first exposure was Stonehenge:Kaziyoshi Kimoto played the hell out of his bass,raw and dirty,the energy is incredible.Then came Ryuchi Masuda,who updated to at least a 5 string and effects which still have me scratching my head.

    Now Hisashi Sasaki is the current bassist,and I believe he uses a 6 string.

    If anyone is really familiar with this band I would love any ideas on how they get their sound.I'm particularly interested in the current bass players method.I think most of the bassists in RUINS were previously guitar players,so perhaps we aren't talking of pure bass technique here,but I am still inspired by all the sounds they come up with.

    Also,are they fibbing a bit?I've heard some amazingly high pitched squeals and synth noises coming from these albums,I ASSUME they are bass.But very often I'll read a review where the reviewer will state"They've added a guitar player"..uh,I think not.But maybe I'm wrong?

    I know Hisashi has used a midi controller,which I honestly don't know what it is,how it works.But on the Vrresto album,he's able to get synth/piano/faux woodwind sounds out of his bass.And I remember reading a short blip about how he took a sample of a cat meowing and ran it through his computer and played it/triggered it through the bass..I don't know.

    Anyway,any ideas on how these guys get their sound?And could someone recommend other bands who have a similar sound/approach?And yes,I'm familiar with Magma. ;)
  2. hieronymous


    Nov 28, 2002
    Northern CA
    My favorite Ruins album is the most recent one, "Tzomborgha".

    Bass-wise, there are some interesting pics at this site:

    You can clearly see Sasaki Hisashi playing a Music Man Stingray 5 and what looks like a white Tune 6-string. I think I've read that he plays a Fender Bass VI too - the old-school kind that's between a regular bass and regular guitar. It looks like maybe that's what he's playing on the main pic on the skin graft site above.

    I haven't had the chance to see them play at all, though I caught Yoshida Tatsuya (the Ruins drummer) a couple of weeks ago playing with Haino Keiji in Kyoto. And he's playing drums with some of the members of Gong and Acid Mothers Temple in April in Osaka and a couple of other places. I'm definitely going to go to the Acid Mothers Gong show in Osaka, and am waiting to see Ruins for the first time. (click on "live" above 2003 for this year)

    As for the sounds, I always assumed that he and the previous bassist were using various bass synthesizers and harmonizers. There's not as much of that stuff on Tzomborgha, which is maybe why I like it the most...

    And I've never heard anything that sounded like Ruins. There's a related movement of musicians and groups, like Acid Mothers Temple, Toho Sara, Musica Transonic, and Mainliner, but they definitely don't sound the same. Maybe the closest would be Koenji-Hyakkei. There's an interesting review site of Ruins stuff here:

    along with reviews of lots of other stuff. (sorry I don't know more about specific techniques and equipment!)
  3. Splash Neely

    Splash Neely

    Jan 27, 2004
    What do you mean about the Fender being between a bass and a guitar,in the sound or just the overall design?Because I've also read on the notes on some later albums Hisashi is listed as playing guitarbass,I'm assuming that's one word,not a typo.

    Perhaps this thread will survive in the archives for any RUINS fans to come back to.I thought more people would have an idea of what their setup might be,sure they're "out there"but so is Primus!

    Oh well,back to finding my OWN groove.................. :bassist:
  4. hieronymous


    Nov 28, 2002
    Northern CA
    Check these links for the Fender Bass VI and other "six-string basses":

    It looks like a guitar, it has six strings tuned EADGBE, but it's an octave lower, so the lowest four strings are the same as a bass guitar. The scale length is inbetween too, usually around 30".

    I posted about Ruins in the Watt section, and got a cool reply from Watt himself:

    It seems like there's a few people out there that are into the band, but for the most part they are extremely obscure (the band that is). In the post I just mentioned someone said they had seen Ruins live. Lucky... You could email them - they may not have seen this thread.
  5. One of the most amazing bands today... in a way they remind me of Capt. Beefheart's music.

    Any NOMeansNo fans out there???
  6. Splash Neely

    Splash Neely

    Jan 27, 2004
    Actually I got to see them live but once years ago.I couldn't tell what Hisashi's setup was,although they played well,their sound wasn't that great,very abrasive and hard to distinguish one song from another.I should have asked Hisashi,as he was hanging out in front of the stage before the show the whole time.

    True,they are kind of obscure and definitely an acquired taste,but then again I thought I was fairly up to date on interesting Japanese music and I've never heard of Casiopea until I hit this board.Someone mentioned a Japanese bass player with Greg Howe,damn,that could be interesting,as I used to love all those guitar freaks(MacAlpine,Satriani,Howe,etc.)during my attempting-to-learn-guitar days.

    I know Hisashi has used a Digitech Whammy pedal and he must use some type of looping device because he often solos over a riff or groove.

    I'm still learning about bass equipment/fx so some of it I can figure out on my own,like some of their lines must use some octave or pitch shifting,or overdubbing lines in studio.

    Perhaps I can get a response from Hisashi himself someday.I've ordered stuff from Yoshida's website,which he runs,so maybe I can get an answer from one of them.

  7. Never heard of them but will check them out for sure...