It's been a while but I'm happy to be back with an end-of 2021 Bassist Spotlight. I had some personal issues that pulled me away from No Echo, but while life was being resolved I started playing bass full time with a new band called Sleepaway.
We also started up Love & Trust again during the Summer, and both bands plan on being active.
I hope everyone enjoys reading about userelaine from Wristmeetrazor's musical journey, and I plan on interviewing more of my favorite bass players in 2022.
Happy New Year, No Echo family!
Introduce yourself to everyone.
I’m Indiana born n’ raised, now sinning in Sin City full time.
What got you interested in the bass guitar?
Both of my parents are musically inclined, so it was inevitable that I would end up with an instrument in my hands. When I was 15 I found a very beat-up stringless P Bass at a flea market for $45. It looked so sad that I had to take it home and fix it up. I had given thought to picking up a bass before but finding that one felt like fate.
Does your family support your musical endeavors?
They absolutely do. My dad is a drummer, he’s been in the same death metal band (Legion from Muncie, Indiana) since 1991. He’s in and has been in many other bands as well but I just remember sitting in the basement with the bands while they practiced and thinking it was so cool.
I think both of my parents are just happy to see me happy, but I know they’re pleased to see me doing something musical on top of that. They were both at the show in Indianapolis on this last tour to support and definitely enjoyed themselves.
Are you into any other instruments or are you ride or die for the low tones?
I played the flute for 7-8 years, and I still have my unreasonably nice professional flute in a closet somewhere. I used to go to regional solo competitions in high school and bring home golds that I was very proud of.
I also have a few guitars (that I honestly can not play), one being a green SG I nabbed from a pawn shop and the other being a B.C. Rich that was a Christmas gift from my parents a few years ago.
Do you use a guitar pick, and do you have any opinions on playing with your fingers or slap bass?
I do play with a pick. I am not dexterous enough to play without one, as much as I wish I was able to. But, playing with and without a pick has very different sounds that lend themselves well to different genres. I don’t think I’ll ever play anything that would sound better without a pick.
What do you find yourself doing more often downstrokes, upstrokes, or alternate picking?
Alternate, for sure. Always ending a line on a downstroke, just because it’s more comfortable for me and how I count while I play.
Are there any bass players you draw inspiration from?
I’m honestly just inspired by anyone who is better than me. But if I had to name names: Les Claypool, Paz Lenchantin, Geddy Lee.
Are there any drummers you love?
Brann Dailor, number one favorite. I will never get over the first time I heard Mastodon. Tommy Lee and Neil Peart are favorites as well.
The recent tour you did with Wristmeetrazor looked amazing on social media. How did that come about, and what’s it like playing rhythm with the super talented Bryan Prosser?
As far as me joining the band for the tour, I just got incredibly lucky. The last show I went to before the pandemic was LDB 2020, which I went to specifically to see WMR. When COVID started to hit hard, and Indiana went into a shelter-in-place mandate, I had just enough money saved up to get out of Indiana.
I moved to Vegas on a whim and met Justin (WMR singer). He said something about me being in the band at one point because he wanted to be an untethered vocalist, but I figured it was a joke. Still unsure how I managed to land a spot playing bass in my favorite band.
Bryan is a very easy drummer to follow. He and Jonah (WMR guitarist) communicate very well on stage to keep everything in time, and I do my best to just float right underneath it all.
What gear did you use for the tour?
I played an Ibanez SDGR through a noise reducer and a Sansamp, run into a vintage Peavey musician head. Pretty standard setup pedal-wise, but I’ve got some ideas for things I’d like to add to it. I think my next step up is getting a Darkglass head, either an alpha omega or a 500v2.
Would you consider going out or recording with any other bands in the future?
I would! I love playing music in general, so any opportunity given to me is welcomed. As long as I like it, I’ll play it.
Can you play and sing at the same time?
Absolutely not [laughs]. It’s a skill I would like to learn, though. If I’m playing something really simple I can, but I don’t like to play things that are simple.
If you could fill in on bass for any band past, or present; who would it be?
Nine Inch Nails on the Self Destruct Tour 1994.
Is there anything in your personal life you’d like to tell us about?
Nothing interesting at the moment, but my handle is @hxrsefly on every platform and my phone is practically stitched to my hand, so that’s a good way to keep up with me.
Do you have any advice for someone picking up a bass guitar for the first time?
Playing any instrument isn’t something to be scared of. You’re going to suck when you start, and that’s fine. Everyone else sucked too.
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