Fieldy
Bassically


2.0
poor

Review

by Simon STAFF
November 19th, 2017 | 45 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Indulgence distorts what could have, potentially, been an interesting idea.

When you think of a virtuoso bass player, who’s the first person that comes to your mind" Bootsy Collins" Billy Sheehan" Victor Wooten" Yeah, someone along those lines brings a sentiment many will share in the bass playing community. And with no end to these players abilities, you can see why some of them release instrumental solo records; a way of showcasing their chops, musical knowledge and maybe even pushing the instrument into uncharted territories. So, with that said, I can tell you, the last album I expected to see this year was an instrumental solo album – which centres itself almost entirely around the bass – from Korn’s Fieldy.

Before I start dissecting the meat and potato of this thing, it’s worth pointing out, this isn’t actually Fieldy’s first stab at a solo LP. Back at the turn of the millennium, Fieldy dropped the exceptionally awful Rock’n Roll Gangster under the name “Fieldy’s Dreams”, an album which, by his words, was meant to show his fervent love for hip-hop music. Featuring a brace of guest artists, Rock’n Roll Gangster was a far cry from Korn’s down-tuned head banger tunes – and while not my cup of tea, exposed a new level of diversity for any Korn fan unaware of the band’s core influences. The well thought-out and cleverly titled Bassically, is a further departure from his last album; moving away from being just a hip-hop record, this instrumental album attempts to fire a lot of other influences at its listener. There’s clearly a lot of love for the way artists like Flea, Stanley Clarke and Victor Wooten play, and you’ll hear quite a variation on the way Fieldy uses his slap technique, among a host of melodic licks to try and keep you engaged. And I’ll be honest in saying, there is a few cool moments to be had inside the odd track here and there: the opening song “Bass O Rama” has an undeniable heaviness and groove to it; the 70s vibe on “5 String Graffiti” is one of the strongest highlights here, it feels weighty and puts the bass effects he has to good use; “Step Right Up” brings some decent hooks to the table; and closing track “Bass Age” brings a dirty hip-hop groove and adds a few layers of synths and so forth to bring depth and texture to the song, making it another highlight here.

Having said that, I’ve always thought you have to be a very special artist to make an instrumental record that will actually keep you interested, and I really don’t think Fieldy has the ability – nor the knowledge – to do that. Bassically misses the mark more times than it hits, the first glaring problem is the god-awful production: I can’t for the life of me tell you just how bad this album sounds, it’s something you’ll have to experience to fully understand the gravity of just how airy, tinny and empty it feels throughout most of its duration; drums sound like crap and even if this is a bass themed record, the abundance of bass tracks layered over each other make the songs feel like something big is missing. It doesn’t help that he saturates the melodic basslines in reverb, making songs sound furtherly vacant. Worse still, any of the effects he uses on this album don’t particularly bring anything exciting to the table. Similarly, he doesn’t have the prowess to make a lot of his licks have any staying power; his staccato lead lines most of the time sound clunky and jarring, while his usual “click-a-ty-click” technique layered underneath everything makes some of the songs sound messy. Further problems surface when you get to the samples and – best for last – the terrible Johnathan Davis, human-beatbox, track “JD Fresh”, which makes songs sound goofy and a right-off the moment they begin. But the most obvious problem is that, at 45 minutes and 17 tracks, it overstays its welcome pretty quickly; if the album had a third cut off it, it could have helped Bassically be a lot more cohesive and to the point.

The question that lingers in my mind isn’t whether it’s a bad record, but more on who it’s actually aimed at" This isn’t a metal album, so unless you have a diverse taste in music, I can’t see this appealing to Korn fans – unless you’re the type of person who’ll lap up anything from the artists in the band. So that leaves fans of instrumental music and bass players who enjoy hearing other bass players let rip. And to be quite honest, I’m not entirely convinced it’ll appeal to those people either. There’s some cool cuts on here, sure, and Fieldy certainly has skill in his playing – but let’s be honest in saying, he wouldn’t cut it next to someone of Les Claypool or Jeff Berlin’s stature. Bassically, what I’m saying is his playing isn’t good enough to be heard for 17 tracks and 45 minutes of run-time. There’s some solid ideas at the heart of this thing, it’s just overindulged too much, and I can’t see bass nerds getting a lot from this, nor do I think instrumental fans will find much joy either.

Poor.

EDITIONS: DIGITAL//C̶D̶

PACKAGING: N/A

SPECIAL EDITION: This project was a pledge campaign, and various packages were offered to supporters who funded the album; such as signed basses, posters, CDs and T-shirts.



Recent reviews by this author
Joanne Shaw Taylor Reckless HeartSaver They Came with Sunlight
HEALTH GTA: Online Arena WarThe Claypool Lennon Delirium South of Reality
Rotting Christ The HereticsHEALTH VOL. 4 :: SLAVES OF FEAR
user ratings (9)
Chart.
1.9
poor


Comments:Add a Comment 
DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


15200 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

So, yeah, this is a thing.



As always, constructive criticism welcome.

AsleepInTheBack
November 19th 2017


5930 Comments


Few formatting errors here with quotation marks (") that I think should have been semicolons or full stops but got lost in translation? Otherwise, great stuff. Still one of the most prolific contribs out there. Needless to say, I will not be checking this one.

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


15200 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Cheers man.



Yeah, the (") isn't me, it's down to the site. They are question marks but for some reason, it keeps putting quotation marks there instead. I think it's from when the site went down last time.

AsleepInTheBack
November 19th 2017


5930 Comments


Ah right, I wasn't aware. That's a faff.

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


15200 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Yeah, it's weird. The site also changed my real name on my reviews with my user name. lol

AsleepInTheBack
November 19th 2017


5930 Comments


I'm pretty sure you can fix that just by updating your nickname on your profile again, or at least that worked for me. Are the mods aware of the " thing?

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


15200 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I haven't said anything. But that's because I assumed other reviewers would have said something.

AsleepInTheBack
November 19th 2017


5930 Comments


checked the meds and yeah, its come up before. i think they're on it.

ScuroFantasma
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


11672 Comments


Omg this is a thing

Digging: Tyr - Hel

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


15200 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Aye, thought someone might, Asleep.



Scuro, I urge you, never look at the song names; you'll turn to stone.

ScuroFantasma
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


11672 Comments


Woaaaah I sure hope they're not an indication of quality here, though judging by your review they are hahaha. I'm going to check this asap.

TheSonomaDude
November 19th 2017


6748 Comments


those song names are cringe

DoofusWainwright
November 19th 2017


19991 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

I was expecting nothing less than the AOTY, f you Fieldy

ScuroFantasma
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


11672 Comments


I've heard much worse but man this is not great. Sounds super duper dated to say the least, brittle production, often really...empty songwriting. Honeslty feels like the soundtrack to a 70s DVD menu screen.

DoofusWainwright
November 19th 2017


19991 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

It IS DVD menu screen music lmfao

bloc
November 19th 2017


54682 Comments


Tracklist makes me think this is some brostep shit lol

Digging: Way Out West - Intensify

butcherboy
November 19th 2017


9464 Comments


I wuv bass mon!! hahahahahahha.. yes yes!

TheSonomaDude
November 19th 2017


6748 Comments


yeah the music sounds like stock reality TV background music. like, I could imagine this shit playing in the background of, like, Pimp My Ride or Kitchen Nightmares.

Just take any song at any random moment and imagine a chef Gordon Ramsey voice-over saying "it's day 3 at the River Rock Inn, and the food is absolutely dreadful"

ScuroFantasma
Staff Reviewer
November 19th 2017


11672 Comments


I might start to like it if I did that

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
November 19th 2017


15026 Comments


Gonzo I gotta admire how you take one for the team putting yourself through the excruciating listen of albums like this one lol

I am gonna stay away from this... bassically ;) Mental pos.

Digging: Elizabeth Colour Wheel - Nocebo



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy