5/11/2012 12:00:00 AM
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10/13/2011 12:00:00 AM
3/9/2010 1:05:00 PM
Yes, there really is a cartoon character on the cover of the April 2010 issue of Bass Player.
But that’s no ordinary animated dude; it’s William Murderface of the
quantruple- platinum, über-brutal metal band Dethklok, an act so big
that their record sales can affect the economies of major Western
countries for good or ill.
3/9/2010 12:00:00 PM
You can’t put into words what I do. It’s like asking Robert DeNiro how
to act, or why George Burns was a comedy genius. I mean, we’ve just got
the goods. There’s no secret formula. And I’m sure all the sad
struggling bassists out there will read this hoping for the secret to
being an amazing bass player like me, and there isn’t one and then
they’ll kill themselves.
3/9/2010 11:45:00 AM
I just gradually became this “session player.” I love it. I don't care
what it's called, I'm just so happy to just plug in and jam with
somebody else. ‘Cause everyone has killer ideas, no matter what level
of musician or what age of band they are, there's always something new
and killer about playing with someone different, and as long as they
keep giving me the chance to keep doing it, I'll keep doing it.
3/9/2010 11:30:00 AM
I think it’s great actually that people are getting interested in
musicianship as such again – especially the guitar players, you’d be
amazed by how fast they are, and their technique and everything. And
some of them, you give them a few more years and I think someone will
probably come up with stuff even better. So I think it’s a good thing.
People start out playing a lot of technical stuff and then after a
while they’ll probably slow down a little bit and just use whatever
musical abilities they have to go to the next level.
3/9/2010 10:30:00 AM
It's the relationship. It's not about how good or how fast or how many
inversions I can play. It's the relationship that my parts bear to the
other things that are happening within the song and whether it's
musical or not, whether it serves a purpose or not.
3/9/2010 9:45:00 AM
When I joined the band, we were actually a five-piece, and we had two
guitarists, and so when we became a four-piece, I then had try to
compensate at least for the sound of a guitar being there, so I started
playing with a lot more distortion than I had before. And then using
two amps certainly added to that. Also, I didn't start out as a bass
player, I started out as a guitarist, and I basically started playing
bass because Converge needed a bassist to go on tour with them one
3/9/2010 9:20:00 AM
I’ve always loved to cop the Jaco punk-jazz stuff or like, you know,
fusion-metal or something like that. I really abhor the whole
sub-categorizing thing, but I definitely feel like my band is a mix of
like really fusion-y stuff, really metal stuff, thrashier metal stuff,
and a little bit of melodic pop, poppier sensibility, [with a] kind of
punk attitude? I don’t know.
3/9/2010 9:05:00 AM
Honestly, I never saw the bass and was like, “I’m going to play bass.” I had friends [and]
the opportunity to play music came up…they had a house with stuff set
up, and I was playing my friend’s drums with his roommates and the bass
playin’ roommate took off for the summer. My friends whose drums they
were was like, “Hey, why don’t you just let me play my drums and you
can play Mike’s bass rig.” And that was when I was 18, and that’s how I
ended up playing bass.
3/9/2010 8:50:00 AM
Maybe the reason why the bass work sounds a little different than on most metal albums, and death metal albums, is because I [was]
working with Pestilence in the early 90s. And I was recording bass for
their fourth album, Spheres. And at that time, the metal scene was
totally not open-minded at all. We were very much into fusion and jazz,
and we had this idea for a different direction and, actually, those
guys gave me carte blanche – they gave me all the space I needed to put
my own stamp on the album. So bass was, first of all, very audible on
the record. But also, it was my first chance in death metal to put my
own stamp on a death metal production.
3/9/2010 8:45:00 AM
As far as when we’re writing, we approach every song differently, but
it's always just starting somewhere and not knowing exactly where the
song is gonna go. Someone might have a part pre-written that is some
sort of down tempo, boom-chuck-type thing, or a piano thing, and we'll
be like “oh, that's cool” and it'll spark ideas for how to get there
and how to get out of it.
3/9/2010 8:40:00 AM
I don’t want to be overly aggressive, but I like to have a clean tone
so you can hear every note, like defined individually, but I like to
dirty it up so it’s in the mix where it’s almost like a guitar but it
has a lot of bottom to it. I like balls, and the definition. Those are
my key things.
3/9/2010 8:30:00 AM
I find a lot bass players – especially [bassists who] played with Devin
before me – they're like guitar players that play bass, or just come
along and start playing bass. I think I brought a different thought
process to it. I came in as a bass player, and musically that's about
it. But I bring in a lot of [the] business side of things too. A lot of
bands, especially with Strapping, didn't have any kind of business
direction, and I came on board and definitely helped with that.