Sledgehammer Effect on a Zoom B3

Discussion in 'Effects [BG]' started by Swampish, Jan 23, 2021.


  1. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    Hey All,
    With the pandemic, I've been doing a lot of remote recording with our band, since we can't get together and we're going to start playing around with Sledgehammer by Peter Gabriel.

    I'm using a Fender American Performer Jazz (fretted) as I think that is the closest thing I have to get me even remotely in the neighborhood of a MusicMan. I'm also using a Zoom B3 for my effects and emulation.

    Does anyone have any idea how I might approximate Tony Levin's sound (unfortunately, not his playing...what a bass god!) using the B3? I think that there's a great deal of compression and maybe and octaver? I will slide to try and get a bit of the fretless sound, but only so much I can do about that.

    Any insight would be appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    i've never played that part with anything but a fretless and some attitude: didn't use effects. playing the bass part accurately (the attitude part!) is enough, IMO. EFX = the icing, not the cake! ;)
     
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  3. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Bearded Dingwall Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Jul 16, 2005
    Los Angeles, CA
    Ian Martin Allison has an awesome video on Youtube all about how to achieve this tone.
     
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  4. BruceWane

    BruceWane

    Oct 31, 2002
    Houston, TX
    Definitely an octaver, definitely compression. Although Tony's tone is often described as "highly compressed", and he does definitely usually use a compressor, I think that's actually more his touch control with his instrument. He keeps his volume very, very even with his hands alone, then compression is the icing on the cake, so to speak.

    Fretless is pretty essential to this track, though. You can probably cop a lot of the feel with a lot of string bending and vibrato.
     
  5. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    I completely agree. My issue is that I'm playing fretted, so along with sliding to try and accentuate the fretless tone, I've played around a bit with the Detune effect, but I've found that really just a bit of Octave brings the sound closer to TL's. As you said though, so much attitude in the song and in his bass playing, that for sure is critical!
     
    JRA likes this.
  6. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    Thanks! Will do some digging and try to find that!
     
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  7. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    By the way, is that you with Lee Sklar? Great pic!
     
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  8. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    That's part of my issue. Not owning a fretless is forcing me to work with more sliding and bending on top of working on getting that monster sound! As was mentioned above, there is a lot of attitude driving that bass along with his touch (even more so given that I think the studio bass was done using those funk finger thingies). What a bassist!
     
  9. I think there's also a crossed-over chorus in there.

    Definitely octave, pretty sure comp, then a chorus, but make sure you tweak the crossover on the chorus.

    This video around the 3:00 mark they discuss it.

     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2021
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  10. Edward Coffman

    Edward Coffman

    Jan 24, 2021
    I know this is an old thread, but I use the MXR octave deluxe. Growl fairly low 8 o'clock (7 o'clock off). Dry at 1-2 o'clock, and girth at 1-2 o'clock. I don't have a fretless so I do turn down the treble a little. I always wondered if a flanger was used but blended mostly dry. I might try this.
     
    JackMinion likes this.
  11. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    Well, I finally worked out a blend of effects that seems to work quite well. I was having issues with the octaver which isn't great on the B3. A bit too distorted. So I replaced that with a pitch shift (the Monoshift effect on the B3) and combined it with compression and just a splash of chorus and I believe it worked pretty well. Will try to post a snippet.
     
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  12. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    Here's just a bit of the beginning of the song with a Karaoke track of vocals, guitar, drums and keys. The bass is me using my Aerodyne with flatwounds (rounds on my Jazz sounded too aggressive combined with the effects). I'm using my B3 with Chorus, Monopitch and Compression (the 160 effect).
    On an aside, I converted my daughter's old laptop to a Linux machine and am using Ardour to record. Excellent software and it's free!
     

    Attached Files:

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  13. Karrlander

    Karrlander

    Sep 15, 2019
    Just picked up this song with our band and I ended up with a tiny bit of envelope filter together with octaver, chorus and compression. It doesn’t make my fretted sound like a frettless but at least there is a little extra something happening with the tone. I like it but to each their own. :)
     
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  14. Swampish

    Swampish

    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    That's exactly it! Hard to get the exact tone, but you definitely can't play that clean. I had recorded a few test tracks with the octaver and it sounded OK, but was just a bit too aggressive with my other settings. I found the pitch shift on the B3 was a bit more subtle and worked well with the mix of instrument and other effects I was using. Just such a fun song to play!
     
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  15. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
    Jun 16, 2021

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