Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Great Bass Albums in Rock Music

You know what I love? Rock albums. You know what I love even more? Rock albums with throbbing bass lines on them. While there may be a lot of great bass players out there in the Rockosphere (John Doe from X fame, being one of them, Krist Novoselic from Nirvana fame being another), most groups sacrifice the bass players for the general feel of the music, having them provide the steady line that the drums can sync in with so that the lead guitarists can soar. This kind of rock is standard. But even better is when the bass playing on the album is just as, if not more, important that the lead guitarists, and these albums below are examples of that. If you know of any more, please leave them in the comments box below. I'd definitely love to hear them, being a bass listening enthusiast myself.

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XTC-Drums and Wires

Colin Moulding is one sick bass player. You've never heard of him, I know, but he really tears it up on this album. If you never heard of this group before, XTC was a New Wave band from Swindon, England that sounds just as new today as they did back in 1979 when they released this album. And the bass line that never stops walking on this record is the reason for that. Below is just one of the many great examples of great bass playing melding seamlessly with the guitar. You NEED to hear this album if you're a fan of bass playing at all.

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Anti-Flag-Underground Network

How funny is it that the bassist of this group is named Chris #2 because there was already a Chris in the band in Chris Head? That said, this is a really strong punk album with bass lines interspersed throughout that are as furious and as angry as the lyrics themselves. It really links in well with the music. Try it.

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Primus-Sailing the Seas of Cheese

Sure, any Primus album could go on this list as Les Claypool is arguably the greatest bass player who ever lived. But this is the first album that I ever heard by them so it goes on this list, so there.

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Descendents-Milo Goes To College

Tony Lombardo sold his soul to the devil. At least, he must have to be able to rip apart those bass lines like he does on this album. There isn't a single moment where the bass isn't audible and powerful on Milo Goes to College. A magnificent debut that was never matched again by the group.

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Who didn't own this album? Coming out right before Brad's death (By the way, did you know that the original title for the album was "Killin' It"?), Brad is obviously the star, but Eric Wilson definitely destroys it on this album. Three piece bands always seem to have the best bass players. They sort of have to though, right? What with the limited instruments and all.

Well, those are some of my favorite bass albums. What are yours? Leave them below in the comments box below.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think the two Joe Jackson albums; "Look Sharp" and "I'm the Man" are consistently some of the most driving and creative bass performances in pop music. Might not be as rocking as you like, but Graham Maby's performance is the identity for almost all the numbers on both albums. The fact that a classically trained keyboardist / vocalist would allow a bass player to be that far up-front speaks strongly for Joe's admiration for Graham's skill.