Posted — December 21, 2021
Playing bass in technical music can be a serious challenge. Regardless of your dexterity and theoretical knowledge, hitting that sweet spot in which you're using your abilities to the fullest, while properly playing your role in a band, is truly the most important challenge for any bass player. While seemingly being the bane of many a prog metal bassist, it is certainly not one for Intervals’ Jacob Umansky. On his debut record with Intervals, “Circadian”, Jacob plucks, slaps, and taps his way through Aaron Marshall’s instrumental guitar compositions, with all of the musicality, technical skill, and tasteful restraint you could possibly ask for.
The song we are looking at in this playthrough, String Theory, is a perfect example of Jacob’s fantastic execution of his role on the record. Holding down the root notes when necessary, bridging the gap between the drums and guitar with some very impressive slap passages (not to mention some admirable three finger plucking technique on display throughout), and all the while accomplishing his most important role, which is to help guide the feel of the song, retracting and expanding his playing along with Aaron’s to serve the overall journey of the composition. All in all, a top tier player, but more importantly, a top tier writer.
Grab the free tabs for this song here, and watch the video below to get a look at just how masterfully Jacob does his thing. Once you've done that, be sure to check out “Circadian - The Complete Bass Transcription” as well. If you’re at all interested in advancing your modern metal bass playing, then look no further than Jacob Umansky.