Ben Green of Godflesh on bass


Pic: Diana Lynn Ring

I would describe my bass style as heavy, downtuned and driving. Sometimes I play chords to give extra weight and depth. I like to have as big a physical impact on people’s bodies as I can. People have been physically sick and had orgasms (although not at the same time!) at our live shows as a result of the intense low end and sheer physicality of the sound. I sometimes slap, because it adds a percussive tone and physicality. The secret of playing bass well is practice, naturally. For me I value being innovative and thinking outside the norms of what you are ‘supposed to do’. My favourite bass ever to date is my current Fender Jazz: it’s a joy to play and can handle being downtuned to B, which means I don’t have to use a five-string. My bass heroes? Too many, but to name a few: Brian Wilson, he didn’t always play bass on his records, but he wrote and dictated how to play to session musicians and totally changed the way bass was used in music, sometimes using two or three basses on a track. He was an incredibly talented multi-instrumentalist too, not just a great bass player. Jean-Jacques Burnel of the Stranglers, who had a great driving sound and style. Paul McCartney, who was incredibly inventive and made bass playing interesting and upfront, and another incredible multi-instrumentalist. Dennis Dunaway from the original Alice Cooper Band, again a very inventive and unique bass player who never wasted a note.
Basses: Fender Jazz
Effects: Boss HM2 Heavy Metal pedal
Amps: Ampeg SVT

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