Exclusive interview EpidemicNation.com with Nicholas Schendzielos, bass player for Job For A Cowboy/Cephalic Carnage.
Hi Nick, how are you?
Doing great, thanks! Finally at home for a while with my girlfriend and cats so that’s really nice. We’ve toured quite a bit this year, doing that always makes you appreciate home so much. I seem to play more bass at home than I do on the road as well which is really killer, you know, just learning new stuff and progressing as a player.
What is your current activities now?
Right now I’m doing an interview for you. I’m going to make a cup of coffee, and then I’m going to try to do another one of my wacky bass videos. www.youtube.com/bassfordays Since I’ve been home, I teach bass lessons, both in person and on skype. It’s really something I’m starting to enjoy.
How do you divide time between Job For A Cowboy and Cephalic Carnage ?
Cephalic has been considerably less busy since our drummer John decided he wanted to take a break from touring and raise his new little girl. We have Patrice Hamelin from Martyr playing with us now, and as he is also the drummer for Beneath the Massacre, we only get so much of his time a year. It basically goes like this, whoever books a time period first is who I’m with. Looking forward to this upcoming tour in two weeks in the states, where Cephalic is direct support for Job. A little double duty action sounds great to me!
Can you tell us how did you get involved with Cephalic Carnage and Job For A Cowboy ?
I played in a band with my grade school buddy Greg Williams. He’s a phenomenal drummer and we pretty much taught each other how to play. We started a band called AinMatter- which was two basses, drums, and vocals. No guitars! It was awesome. We started doing really well around Denver, playing sold out theater shows and what not, and then Sherwood from Skinless who had recently moved to Denver saw me playing with them. He and Zac from Cephalic were starting a side project, and he thought I’d be a fit. I ran into Zac on the street downtown and he asked me to do the side project, I said yes, of course, and then a month later Jawsh quit Cephalic and Zac asked me to join them instead of the side project. So that was awesome. Cephalic toured with Despised Icon in Europe for two weeks in ’08, where I met Al Glassman. Fast forward to 2010 and I was doing session bass work in Arizona with Jon Rice. We hit it off pretty well, so a month later I got a call from Jon saying their bassist had just left in the middle of tour. I couldn’t do it because Cephalic was going to Mexico the following week, but I knew Cephalic had nothing planned for a long time, so I said if they needed help past that I could do it. Being that I knew Al from before, and worked so well with Jon, they asked if I’d record an ep with them, (which ended of being the Gloom ep). It went well and they said they wanted me to join and they’d be open to working out the scheduling with Cephalic. Phew. Here I am!
Tell us something about album Demoncrazy ?
Demoncracy has some of my favorite bass work to date. Probably what I love most about it, is that the band and Jason Suecof (our producer) had no problem putting the bass where it should be in the mix (AUDIBLE!). You can hear everything that’s going on quite well and that’s good cause there’s a lot going on.
Why choose bass ?
Bass is the most underrated instrument almost of all time. You have so much control with what you choose to play. There is so much responsibility in shaping the sound a band will have. You have to tie the rhythm to the melody and so you’re really getting to be almost a percussionist as well as melodic player as well. It’s so fun to play through a huge ass rig just crushing huge notes and then playing fast as well. You can get more gigs in this industry than anyone else, because few people have figured out how cool it actually is, so nobody wants to play it.
Would you like to tell us about your bass setup on studio and on tour (string tuning,pedal setup, amp, ..etc.)?
I exclusively play Warwick basses. They are very essential to my sound. Live I play a custom shop Streamer Stage II which is just the finest instrument on the planet. I will also play either my Dolphin Pro I, or a Fortress Masterman (which is the first bass I ever bought!) In the studio I use a Corvette $$. NASTY sounding bass. With Cephalic I’m tuned B,E,A,D,G- with Job it’s ADGCF (they’re in D standard, but I love having the low option). I’ve been using a dbx 160a compressor when I can, or I’ll even run through my computer using a plug in compression. I’ve recently just picked up Source Audio as a pedal endorser. I use the Multiwave Bass Distortion pedal, the Bass Envelope Filter, and the Hot Hand wah. Check their stuff out, it’s really, really cool. I use a Warwick Hellborg Bass preamp, and then I play Aguilar Amplification heads and cabs. Right now is the Db750, and the db810. RUTHLESS gear! I play D’addario strings.
Who inspired you to playing bass ?
Les Claypool, Flea, Ryan Martinie, and as I got into playing more, Victor Wooten,
Jaco Pastorius, Michael Manring, Marcus Miller, and those types of cats,
and recently Evan Brewer.
Who’s your favorite metal bass player ?
I would have to say Ryan Martinie has the sickest style. It was just punchy, raw, gut filling, forward-thinking, and plain out fun.
What bands are you listening to lately?
Right now I’m doing the Deftones new record, the new Soundgarden, the Faceless’ Autothiesm, Between the Buried and Me, Trioscapes, Crosby, Stills, and Nash, Zero 7, etc. I listen to pretty much everything.
Any suggestions for new metal bands?
Kitezh is really sick, Clinging to the Trees of a Forest Fire, Vimana, Legion of Death, Yakuza, etc. I could go on forever!
Thanks for your time Nick, Good luck
Thank you man! Appreciate the time!
Check out Nick Youtube channel at www.youtube.com/bassfordays
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