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Old 06-17-2014, 01:55 PM   #1
RonaldPoe
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UK Scott Pilgrim Bass tone and writing similiar basslines

I'm a fan of the film, "Scott Pilgrim vs. The World" and really like Scott's bass tone. Does anyone have any suggestions on obtaining a similar one without spending a lot of money (I already have a Boss DS-1 and Fender Rumble bass amp). Here's some examples (from the film of course).

"We are Sex Bob-Bomb"


"Threshold"


Also I know this sounds weird but a cool song about victory (that sounded like something out of said film) came to me in a dream. I'm trying to reconstruct this song. My question is how would I write a bassline similar to the ones in Scott Pilgrim uses? This is really important to me.
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"This is dedicated to the GUY who keeps yelling from the balcony its called we hate you please die."

Crash! from "Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World" (I'm a fan of that movie). Also he was referring to Wallace, Scott's gay roommate.

Last edited by RonaldPoe : 06-17-2014 at 01:57 PM.
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Old 06-17-2014, 04:33 PM   #2
MaggaraMarine
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Just turn on the distortion and it should sound pretty similar. Just use your ears. You can't 100% reproduce it but you can get close enough just by turning on the distortion.

How to write similar basslines? Write a chord progression and play the root notes on the bass. And come up with a rhythm that the whole band plays. At some parts just play 8ths all the time. And play with attitude. The thing is, the basslines don't work on their own, they work with the band. Hit the strings hard and you'll find the right attitude.
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Old 06-17-2014, 04:36 PM   #3
FatalGear41
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Oddly enough; this question has been asked by quite a few people. It is a bit difficult to answer because Scott Pilgrim is a fictional character played by an actor, and the actor is not actually playing the bass that you hear. He may step on a Boss distortion box in the film and play through a Peavey amplifier, but that does not mean that these were used during the recording of the tracks. There are undoubtedly people buying a Rickenbacker 4003 in the hope that they might emulate that tone, but since the guy on-screen is not actually playing it, well; it might be the wrong bass altogether.

The final "bass battle" was actually played by Justin Meldal Johnsen (playing the bad guy's bass) and Jason Falkner (playing the Scott Pilgrim part). Mr. Meldal Johnsen has stated that in that final "duel," he played a Rickenbacker bass while Mr. Falken used a Fender Mustang bass.

The bass parts are seriously overdriven; most bass distortion boxes have that muffled, compressed distortion that you hear. As a result; any bass distortion box should be able to get you that tone. I do not know what amplifier(s) was used for the tracks on the film, but I suspect that it was probably an Ampeg SVT. Every recording studio either has one, or has access to one. The EQ is seriously mid-range heavy.

His bass lines are very fast eighth notes on the root, for the most part. Very much like typical punk rock. Give a listen to a few Ramones tunes and you will hear the similarity. Crafting lines like those is easy once you have decided on the chords and the tempo.

You should be able to nail it pretty easily.
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Last edited by FatalGear41 : 06-17-2014 at 04:39 PM.
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Old 06-20-2014, 12:45 PM   #4
RonaldPoe
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Thanks for the advice. Are you saying I should crank the mids and learn how to make punk rock basslines (for the Scott Pilgrim style)? Also would a Bass Big-Muff work for the tone or should I stick to the Boss DS-1?
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"This is dedicated to the GUY who keeps yelling from the balcony its called we hate you please die."

Crash! from "Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World" (I'm a fan of that movie). Also he was referring to Wallace, Scott's gay roommate.
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Old 06-20-2014, 03:07 PM   #5
FatalGear41
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Pretty much; yes. That is what he (or whoever wrote those tunes) is doing. As for the distortion box, I am not very familiar with the Boss DS-1 for bass. If it can get that muffled, "My amplifier's speakers sound like Ampeg elephant farts" tone, then stick with it. Otherwise, a Big Muff for bass would be a good choice. A Tech 21 SansAmp VT pedal (as in "SVT") would be a better choice, but those are a bit on the pricey side.
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DAMNIT FATALGEAR YOU RUINED MUH FLOW!
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