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thrash metal sound

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Phil Ellefson, Apr 8, 2005.

  1. Phil Ellefson

    Phil Ellefson

    Apr 6, 2005
    I have an Epiphone Thunderbird and a LAney R2 and i was wondering if anyone could help me get a more 'thrash metal' sound out of it as i can't seem to set it up to get a quality sound from it. Thanks Phil
  2. distortion. turn on the overdrive.
  3. phxlbrmpf


    Dec 27, 2002
    Perhaps using really bright strings and soloing the neck pickup will help. I take it for trash metal you'd need a pretty grindy kind of sound, right?

    Of course I meant the bridge pickup, duh.
  4. Phil Ellefson

    Phil Ellefson

    Apr 6, 2005
    not really grindy more tinny but still provides a low end when needed like an old megadeth 80's sound
  5. Pneuma


    Feb 14, 2004
    Play with a quarter

  6. Phil Ellefson

    Phil Ellefson

    Apr 6, 2005
    not really grindy more tinny but still provides a low end when needed like an old megadeth 80's sound
  7. Tash


    Feb 13, 2005
    Bel Air Maryland
    Lots of high end: neck pickup, boost the mids and highs with EQ. Compression is great too. Avoid any kind of distortion at all costs (distortion will make you sink into the mix too much). Playing with a pick helps get that extra attack, though its not required.

    Oh yeah: buying a GK/Hartke rig would help too, but that might be taking things a bit too far.
  8. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    Try some EMG pickups.
  9. useless

    useless Guest

    Mar 11, 2004
    i dont know if you use a pick, but serously try a quarter (or equivalant scottish currency?) it will make a more metallic sound on the string which will give the impression of more definition.
    brand new strings will help but it will get costly to buy a new set every time they start to sound "dead".
    add midrange and treble to your amp too that's also important. im not familiar with the laney but im sure you'll figure out a good tone with time.
    good luck :bassist:
  10. Jonki

    Jonki I will not slap my Bee!

    Oct 14, 2003
    Arendal, Norway
    play with a pick
  11. konfishily


    Jan 24, 2004
    Brooklyn, NY
    metal picks will give you a crazy bright tone
  12. some mutli-effects pedals have bright settings this could help :bassist:
  13. Kelly Lee

    Kelly Lee Yeah, I'm a guy! Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2004
    Marana, AZ, USA
    Ah...my favorite genre. :D

    I always play with a pick for the fast driving sections. Try something like a Clayton .80mm or 1mm.

    On EQ'ing, I like to boost the the low frequencies in the 100 to 200hz range then I use a small "smiley" eq setting from there. I also add some compression.

    EMG actives also really help.

    Try different stings as well. For thrash I prefer nickel roundwounds over SS any day. Rotosound Billy Sheehan' sets worked really well for me. Now I like Black Diamonds. They have that darker sound I've been looking for. I just recently put some DR Black Beauties on and man these would be awesome for thrash. They have the look and I can get that Frank Bello sound I love. Just listen to the cover of "Got The Time".

    I hope some of this helps.

    EDIT: I forgot to add that I always use my P neck pup, with just a little of the J bridge pup.
  14. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Steel strings, bridge pickup, sometimes use a pick and boost the mids and highs.
  15. Groovehunter


    Dec 3, 2004
    dude, with a name like Ellefson - just ask Dave ;-)

    Ellefson's bass sound is impeccable, his bass sound on Rust In Piece is very very nice.

    I'd say use EMG actives pups, roll off the neck pup slightly and play with a 1mm pick. Boost some of the lows using EQ if needed and you should be pretty close.

    What gear was Ellefson using to record around the time of RIP? Jackson basses? Can anyone shed some light on this?

    I've been using Mesa and Fender heads with a Spector Euro for my band who are quite thrash influenced and that sounds great IMO!
  16. Mr.Bassie720

    Mr.Bassie720 Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2005
    Washington DC,Silver Spring,MD
    Endorsing Artist: Spector Basses
    The solution revolves around many factors, most of which have been covered.my two cents;Ampeg SVTand crank it!