Fretless 5 string for a deathcore band?

Discussion in 'Bass Guitar Discussion' started by godfleshfan53, May 15, 2021.

  1. godfleshfan53

    godfleshfan53 SS.org Regular

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    What are your thoughts on using a fretless 5 string bass tuned to F# B E A D playing alongside an 8 string in a deathcore band? To specify, I'm thinking about getting a fretless Harley Benton 5 string or their imitation of a music man stingray.
     
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  2. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

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    If you have the ear, go for it.

    Thread needs more Steve DiGiorgio:
     
  3. volatile123

    volatile123 SS.org Regular

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    Go for it. No reason why you can't use a fretless for deathcore.
     
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  4. godfleshfan53

    godfleshfan53 SS.org Regular

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    I asked a friend earlier today and he was against it, saying "Fretless means flatwounds and can’t play aggressively or fast"
     
  5. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    Yes please. We need more fretless instruments in the metal world...


    Tell your friend he's wrong, so so wrong...
     
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  6. Spaced Out Ace

    Spaced Out Ace $$60,000,000,000

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    Show him the DiGiorgio vid above...
     
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  7. volatile123

    volatile123 SS.org Regular

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    Hate to break it to you but your friend isn't right
     
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  8. Hexer

    Hexer Contributor

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    How would flatwound strings keep you from using a fast or aggressive playing style? They're just strings. Also not everyone uses flatwounds on fretless basses.
    Steve DiGiorgio is a great example of aggressive fretless bass in death- and thrashmetal.
    Steve Harris is a great example of fast and aggressive playing style on flatwounds (not fretless though)
     
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  9. Beheroth

    Beheroth SS.org Regular

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    Yes you can use a fretless bass in any style, however tuned to F# ... not sure about that one chief, i'm guessing it's gonna be mud city.
    Maybe if you're looking for that sub bass kick "BOOM" effect ...
    As for the flatwounds, yes they do sound less aggressive but do not affect the playing style.
     
  10. Brutal08

    Brutal08 SS.org Regular

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    Talk about this to Olivier Pinard in Cryptopsy Akurion and Cattle Decap. He plays in Akurion with a fretless and way to much gain sounds awesome
     
  11. Mwoit

    Mwoit SS.org Regular

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    Fretless works well in metal, but I find you have to work a bit harder to cut through the aggressive guitars. I switched to roundwound strings which has helped a lot with attack and brightness to cut in the mix, and using a Sansamp or Darkglass to give it that OD kick helps. Not saying it's not doable, but I remember dying between two guitarists during rehearsal as I struggled to get through in the mix!
     
  12. wheresthefbomb

    wheresthefbomb SS.org Regular

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    Joe Biden actually signed an executive order saying it's illegal to use fretless basses for metalcore, sorry bud.
     
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  13. A-Branger

    A-Branger SS.org Regular

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    unless you are doing alot of sliding I wold say stay away from fretless

    unless you have an extraordinary perfect ear/techique in order to hit every note perfect in intonation on a very fast passed metal context.

    you are adding yourself a whole extra level of difficulty for a (in my oppinion) very little gain in sound...... unless you are playing slow songs with alot of high noted bass melodies and slides

    if its the sound you are looking for, there other ways to achieve it, by trying different kinds of strings, mutes, pickup combinations and amp/effect settings

    I would say try to rent one first, see how you like it and how hard/eassy would be for you to play one. You would be amazed and how much of a difference would be for your finger to be a few mm off the "right" spot. You dont have a fret anymore, so you can not longer press a big area behind the fret and call it a day, you have to hit the perfect spot. Sometimes even having your finger on "the" spot but a slight pressure of back n forth can change the pitch. then add into the mix the fact that you are going to play most of the time on the lower frets/string which would be a bigger area for you to "miss" the note easier, plus a bigger (maybe floppier) string to reach F# which would make it even harder to be accurate. You would endup playing an "out of tune" bass for 80% of the time until you put the amount of hours necessary to reach the level of perfection needed for that genre. Even more so if you are coming form a guitar background and have little experience as a bass player and dont have the left hand position memory yet

    try one first
     
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  14. bigcupholder

    bigcupholder SS.org Regular

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    I'd think the attack wouldn't be strong enough. A bit of that fret clank is really nice in a metal bass tone. It could probably be done, but I'm not sure why you'd want to try.
     
  15. Matt08642

    Matt08642 SS.org Regular

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    Jaco Pastorius played fast as all fuck and that was back the 60s and 70s and not even close to metal lmao
     
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  16. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    The metal community should be more open minded regarding their "tones". Tone is in the fingers and there's no better test than a fretless. Yes it is a bit challenging, but what's not that is really worth?
     
  17. A-Branger

    A-Branger SS.org Regular

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    kinda-ish

    saying the tone is in the fingers is like saying the tone is in the hands when playing a guitar. This is true and false at the same time

    true in the sense of attack, dynamics, feeling, timing.... (taking out the improvisation part of the equation...)
    but false in the sense of true "tone". Meaning, a humbucker is going to sound like a humbucker and a single coil is going to sound like a single coil no matter how you play. A P bass is going to sound like a P no matter how much you try to make it sound like a jazz bass. Same thing goes with playing with a pick vs fingers, or flatwounds, or fretless

    the whole point for the OP to wanting a fretless is to get a specific sound, if we go for the "the tone is in your fingers" then why even botter to get a fretless, jsut do your finger magic.

    And although you think the metal comunity is too "closed minded", same can be said with any other genre. But for the bass perspective theres still no defined bass for "metal". On a guitar you must have a humbucker in the bridge as minimal, on a bass everything is still a go, any pickup configuration can work great.

    What Im trying to convince the OP is to stay away from fretles only becasue the complexity/hardness of the instrument on such a precise music genre in which you must play along 1-2 guitars on the same notes. So chances are the op is going to sound like a "out of tune" 80% of the time, as the fast freting notes of the music style are not going to give him enough time to be fully precise on the instrument. You have no idea how hard is to be accurate on a fretless, and when you add a guitar or two to play along with, then your intonation "mistake" is going to stand out massively

    also becasue the metal comunity (and this is 100% my opinion) are not really much educated on bass, as in bass as an instrument from the ground up. Mayority of bass players are jsut guitar players, (or at the very least the mayority of bass players in this forum), so they approach it as a guitar, and for the msot part think they need different things from it. Mostly easy to spot when you see people wanting a 7 string fretless bass kinda stuff. In my 22 years since I started playing bass Ive never seen so much "need" for 6 string basses (or more) for example.

    Im not saying the OP cant play bass or something.... Im jsut giving personal feedback and pointing out things that others wont seem to do about a fretless. the metal comunity might seem too closed minded in your opinion, but in mine they seem to be a need for flex to see who got the more strings, weirdest scale, more complex specs, ect ect (this at least on the internet forums thats it)
     
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  18. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    @A-Branger no one owns the truth on anything and specially not me. "Tone is in the fingers" is even more so on fretless instruments, imo, obviously. Personally, I'd love to hear more fretless instruments in metal music and not just celos and violins in some ghotic themed band. I love some fretless in some death metal bands, it feels just right and I'd love to see this instrument become more mainstream... and the same to fretless guitars, but these instruments require more from the player and most are just not into giving more of themselves.

    Fretless guitars and basses force a different mind set, which can only be beneficial for creativity...
     
  19. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    I've played fretless 6 string bass tuned to F for a project before.

    My advice is to experiment. I found that the low notes made playing fast pretty much useless, but fretless actually kind of works better for fast playing in general, because you can crank the action pretty low.
     
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  20. odibrom

    odibrom .

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    Low notes played fast are a mud pond if not EQ'ed correctly. This is valid for fretted and fretless basses.
     

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