Friday 5: Five Bassists That Matter in 2014
Happy Friday, MetalSucks reader! Welcome to MetalSucks Friday 5, our awesome series that appears every Friday (duh) on MetalSucks (duhh) and involves the quantity of five (duhhh).
Here’s how it works: A list of best/worst/weirdest/whatever five somethings is posted by one of your beloved MetalSucks contributors or by one of our buds (like you?). Then you, our cherished reader, checks it out, has a chuckle, then chimes in with a list of the same. No sweat, just whatever springs to mind, k? (Just like that movie about those losers working at a Chicago record store!) After all, it’s Friday — the day dedicated by the gods to mindless, fun time-wasting. Today let’s damn the bassist species with faint praise!
Five Bassists That Matter Right Now
Anso DF, MetalSucks senior editor
It’s tempting to hail guys like Lemmy for their cumulative skill — songwriting, lyrics, leadership, image — but for this Friday 5, let’s focus on bass playing. So put out of your mind our most valuable dudes whose many contributions include playing bass; awesome as they are, their bass playing may not be missed if it disappeared. But Lemmy (and Steve Harris, Geezer Butler) would matter even if, like Cliff Burton, they just showed up, plugged in, and ripped. Maybe it’s because he’s so fucking loud but that’s a chicken-and-the-egg thing.
Fieldy’s slack, bubbly tone is so intrinsic to his band’s sound. It’s present even when it’s not. So he matters to his band. Just not to anyone else.
3. David Ellefson
I had a teacher once whose mortal enemy was sluggish tempos. “Stuck in the mud,” she’d groan if you drifted off. So I can imagine her brain explosion if ever she crosses paths with contemporary Megadeth. They are really saggy. So its hard to tell if Ellefson has lost a step or is merely groping along with mediocrity. Even if he has lost a step, he’s still a step ahead of most.
4. Magnus Olsfelt
from The Crown
Though half of The Crown’s powerhouse songwriting corps, Magnus Olsfelt still needs to be an awesome bass player in order to match the performance by the rest of The Crown. Love this band, they’re so perfect.
5. Matty Williams
of He Is Legend
The job of “bassist for He Is Legend” is like the job of “guitarist for Rush”: You’re sandwiched between two giant music personalities. And like Alex Lifeson, Matty Williams locks in and splashes out in roughly equal measure.Also like Lifeson, his tone is rough as a way to counter his tightness. So he’s everywhere that there’s nothing already. Like air.