Steve Harris' Piece of Mind tone

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Thrasher, Aug 2, 2009.

  1. Today i re-fell in love with one of the albums that made me play bass in the first place: piece of mind. I love everything about this album and especially steves tone that he gets. I was jamming with revolations, flight of icarus, and still life and its seems like his tone is slightly different than what i think is his signiture tone. I think there could be a wah that is slightly ajar to give him a little boost but im not really sure. anybody got any ideas???
  2. Hmm, never noticed that before until you mentioned it, Maybe a bit more mids? Still Life also sounds like he's using a bit of his nails in the intro as well.
  3. Greevus


    Apr 15, 2009
    My band still jams on "Where Eagles Dare" and "To Tame A Land" when we are goofing around. Something about that album is very compressed and middy for sure. I agree it's a fantastic one though. Monstrous and epic really. I think they peaked with this one overall, and maybe "Aces High"' and "Rime of the Ancient Mariner" for tunes.
  4. Use a p-bass and some Rotosound Jazz Bass 77s flatwounds like he used. They even make his signature pack.
    El_Charro likes this.
  5. Hamrhed


    Dec 26, 2007
    The 5 year run from ...Beast, Piece of Mind, Powerslave, and Somewhere in time was unbeliveable- they were the best rock band in the world. I think to me 'Piece' and 'Slave' were my favorites- I couldnt pick one. I was lucky enough to see the 'Slavery' & 'Somewhere on the road' tours and they were the perfect blend of sound, showmanship, and spectacle!

    Steve Harris was a nonstop machine! His tone was a perfect compliment to the guitars, and he meshed w/ Nicko seamlessly- all while running around like a running back :) I believe at that time he was using Marshall's... and of course his P bass.
    Roger W likes this.
  6. Allmanfan456


    Jan 23, 2009
    I always liked his tone on the first couple Maiden albums with Paul Di'anno on vocals. Its so present in the mix and its really mind blowing. Charlotte the Harlot and Transylvania are perfect examples.
  7. Hizzoner


    Jan 6, 2005
    Chicago area
    I did a search and it looks like from a photo of his TE preamp he had eq settings which are scooped in the mids and bumped in the low/high mids..but the photo I saw is not from 1983....

    I really like the overall sound on "piece of mind" (I think it was recorded at a studio on the island of Jersey) and would love to know more of how that bass tone was achieved...

  8. ggoat!!!

    ggoat!!! Inactive

    Apr 6, 2008
    Bass---heavy compression---eq boosting low mids so that the overdrive stage is actually distorting the THICKNESS of the tone---preamp with high gain for slight overdrive/distortion, eq emphasizing MIDS including up to 800hz---compressed again---power amp/tape
  9. Greevus


    Apr 15, 2009
    Harris said in one interview that they miked one 12" speaker and placed several other mikes throughout the room, I think maybe 5 others. He always used Marshall cabs with EV 12"s if I remember correctly. I love those Di'anno LPs too. "Killers" may be the best record for pure BASS. It was the one that made me jump on the bandwagon fast.
  10. Hizzoner


    Jan 6, 2005
    Chicago area
    check..actually recorded in the bahamas not jersey...sorry..
    Thanks gggoat...
  11. loendmaestro


    Jan 15, 2004
    Vienna VA
    Producer Martin Birch is a huge factor of his recorded sound too. That guy always got fanatstic bass tones. He's as responsible for me playing bass as any of my fave bassists.
  12. Hamrhed


    Dec 26, 2007
    Thats a great point- look at how Geezer sounded on Heaven & Hell and Mob rules!
    Loring likes this.
  13. loendmaestro


    Jan 15, 2004
    Vienna VA
    And Roger Glover/Glenn Hughes on the classic Deep Purple LPs.

    Also Bob Daisley/Jimmy Bain in Rainbow.

    Or Martin Turner in Wishbone Ash...

    (um, can you tell I'm a fan?):)
    DiegoVargas likes this.
  14. OneMoreRobot


    Jan 23, 2009
    I'm not a huge Maiden-Head, but I did watch the Flight 666 DVD we got in at Hot Topic...


    I have never seen a band so tight and so powerful. Those guys are AMAZING.
  15. odin70


    Dec 26, 2007
    I love Piece of Mind!! Great bass sound and great songs. Imo he really got his sound on Killers...the first one does not sound very good. Its surprises me that there are so few Harris clones out there in the metal world. Or is it like Nicko once said: Its the only bass style that would work with Maiden and it only works with Maiden.
  16. loendmaestro


    Jan 15, 2004
    Vienna VA
    And Killers was the first one Martin Birch produced....going all the way until Fear Of The Dark.
  17. User364378

    User364378 Guest

    Jan 22, 2009
    with the seymour duncan quarterpounders i get pretty close to his tone
  18. DiegoVargas


    Dec 22, 2018
    Buenos Aires
    I think that the tone in Piece of mind and maybe in some songs from the number of the beast are not recorded with the good old Precision. I hear a bump in mids more tipical of a jazz pickup (Bridge Position) in combination with a split coil, the so called PJ configuration. I guess that he recorded certain songs if not all the songs in Piece of mind with a Ibanez Roadstar Bass (PJ) maybe because Martin Birch suggest this.
  19. almost human

    almost human

    Sep 30, 2010
    Piece Of Mind/Powerslave might be my favorite back-to-back albums in metal. Those guys were on fire back then.
    El_Charro likes this.
  20. InstantEctobass


    Feb 18, 2018
    Sorry to dig up this topic but I took many years trying to nail that tone. I can only do it digitally as I have no way to record my amplifier properly but anyway I got neighbourgs so I spend most of my time playing the bass with the headphones.

    I use Focusrite Scarlett and the delivered Red 2 EQ + Red 2 Compressor and they allow me many tones!


    Basically I EQ this way:

    — High pass filter removing all the super low frequency before 80 Hz (I know it sounds counter-productive but hear me out)
    — Then a very centered around 386 Hz high boost to +12dB (let's consider that low mids)
    — Then a low-to-high mid bump also +12dB around 1.8kHz

    It makes the bass sounding microphonic, but I think that's how Steve sounds in Piece of Mind. Let me post a small quickly done cover to show how it sounds. Be sure to wear headphones, or to have good speakers! I reduced the volume of the original music at some parts so you can hear my tones (and mistakes too haha):

    Vocaroo | Online voice recorder
    El_Charro likes this.