Three albums today: West, bruce & Laing "Why dontcha" (1972, CBS, S 65314), Bedlam "s/t (The beast)" (1973, Chrysalis Records, CHR 1048) and Leslie West "Mountain" (1969, windfall records, Windfall 4500). Three AMAZING albums connected in many ways through Leslie West and Felix Pappalardi but my reason for tell you about those is the brutally "fuzzified" bass guitar. Albums usually have bass guitar but sadly often they only add the frequenze of bass an nothing else. Here are three examples of bass guitar used in an absolutley personal and unique way. Above all this the three bass guitars here presented uses LOTS of fuzz, to the level that you almost wanna blow your speakers just to come closer to the thrilling sound.
On the first album we have the amazing Jack Bruce on bass guitar, known for being a part of Cream to name something haha. He plays with a beautiful sound and with such an attitude he really is an equal third of the band (West sings/screams as usual loudar than a whole army). Bruce doesn't even turn off the fuzz when it is time for the ballads, haha. Listen to the first 40 seconds of the first song and nothing should be hard to understand about this album. You actually find it on spotify, go there! (and of course buy it!)
The Bedlam album is something different in attitude from West and company. It is more heavy psych than heavy blues but how amazing this album sounds and how cool isn't it to have Cozy Powell on the drums? Pappalardi produced this album but didn't play the bass which was handled by Dennis Ball the brother of the guitar player Dave Ball. This album is somewhat "slick" at times but I think it only adds dynamic to it all and it certainly never gets boring. You can really hear that Pappalardi couldn't help himself to tell that Dennis just had to play along with the melody in the first riff of "the beast". This sounds soooooo Mountain. There's no need telling that this album really makes you wanna get some "whisky and wine" but my favorite song is probably the last track "set me free", how groovy isn't the drums after the first chorus.
The last album is just nothing but a classic. Leslie West, Felix Pappalardi and Norman D Smart. It's just a perfect mixture of heavy psych blues rock and everything and the vocals are screamed out in a way only West can live up to. You only need to hear the first 5 seconds of the first song "blood of the sun" to understand that this is an instant buy (in my world at least). The bass guitar of "Blind man" is so damn heavy you fall of the chair if you listen loud enough. I could write something about every track from this but donät have the time. Just out there and buy..... or listen to it on Spotify.
In all my years of listening to music I've always been obsessed by the bass guitar and still I am. Even some bass guitar zine contacted me about the bass guitar I recorded for my "Dödsvisioner" album cause they thought it was innovative and very personal. I was really flattered by this cause I know how excited I can be when I hear an album with a good bass production/player. I find this at times in metal as well, the bass guitar Fenriz recorded for Kronet til Konge (1995, Maliciouse records, MR006) with Dødheimsgard is truly brilliant and is absolutly a big inspiration.
Phew, this took a while but I felt I had to share it.