If you're a real bass freak, you must have a listen to Yello. Their two last cds ("Motion Picture" and "The Eye") display tremendous qualities in terms of production. The bass is deep, sharp, generous. Pure thrill.
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I'll second the Yello. I have Yello's "One Second", and Yello's "Essential Yello". These are very well recorded and are pure pleasure to listen to. They will really put your system through it's paces and if your system can do it well you'll find they are difficult to take off the play list.
Patricia Barber's "Modern Cool" has some really outstanding accoustic bass lines on it. I really like this disc as well.
Soul Vaccination - Tower of Power Live (Good Live bass)
Hommage to Duke - Dave Grusin - (entire album has lots of bass)
Thriller - Michael Jackson - Billie Jean
Oh Mercy - Bob Dylan - Man in the Long Black Cold (a lot of texture to the bass here)
Another Postcard - Barenaked Ladies
Hotel California - Eagles (Hell Freezes Over album, bass is bit over done on this mix)
Elegantly Wasted - INXS (remarkably clear bass)
Sad Old Red - Simply Red
Bizarre Fruit - M People (particularly the live tracks)
This is your Land - Simple Minds - When two World's collide(much of the later Simple minds is bass heavy and well recorded)
Mystic Rhythms - Rush (Power Windows album)
Try "The Gladiator" soundtrack. It has some wonderful deep bass notes, but a lot of great french horn.
Stanley Clark "If this Bass Could Only Talk" bass as a lead instrument
Stuart Hamm "Outbound" bass as a lead . . . This also has excellent songs.
Most anything by Bill Laswell.
Massive Attack "Mezzanine"
Gillian Welch "Revival" this is more country-rock flavor, but has some amazing, and different stand up bass lines
For classical music, you might try Edgar Meyer - Bach Unaccompanied Cello Suites. It's performed on double bass and sounds wonderful. It continues to surprise me with its delicacy. Other classical music with strong clear bass is almost any organ work written by Max Reger.
For good vocal bass, you might try Isaac Freeman, especially in his work with The Fairfield Four.
For acoustic bass in jazz music, I recommend starting with Paul Chambers for older jazz, and a few of the albums of Brian Bromberg for more recent jazz. For electric bass, I think Jaco Pastorius has to be considered among the best there has been.
A couple of jazz Cds:
--Alan Broadbent/"'Round Midnight": Brian Bromberg's acoustic bass is a little heavy-handed at times, but is still fun to listen to.
--Kyle Eastwood/"Paris Blue": This is an all-around excellent CD (yes, from Clint's son), and both his bass playing and compositions are quite good. Track 4 makes a great demo.
Cassandra Wilson - New Moon Daughter
Patricia Barber - Cafe Blue
Marcus Miller - M2
Dave Grusin - Gershwin Connection
Dave Grusin Migration
Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade; Stravinsky: Song of the Nightingale (RCA Living Stereo) SACD
Keb Mo Slow Down
Sting - Brand New Day
Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Michael Brook Night Song
If you like "metal" and seek "pounding double bass" kick drums, check out Master's "Faith is in Season".
If you want to see just how much bottom end extension and output your speakers really have, check out Ayre Acoustics "irrational but efficacious" test disc. Starts off at 5 Hz and climbs from there using the "Cardas sweep tone". This disc CAN damage your woofers, tweeters and wallet, so proceed with caution. Sean
I will second the Maxwell "Embrya" album's bass. It opens with one of the most seductive bass lines (and song)and just rolls along from there and from the start you know it's going to be smooth sailing. It's a good album, mostly mid-tempo cuts with a few really choice tracks on it and the gent can sing, my wife LOVES him. If you want to feel a little younger and cooler than you are, put this album on in the background one evening and if your wife doesn't come closer then there's no help for you. I hate to even compare but I think he's like the younger generations Marvin Gaye and Marvin gaye is as good as it gets IMO.
BTW, this gentle did a version of Kate Bush's "A Womans Work" that put my jaw on the floor and my wife in the mood, YMMV.
Don Dixon is well known producer (REM,Smithereens, etc.) and a less well known bassist, singer, pop songwriter. He knows how to record a pop-rock rhythm section and evidently loves the sound of his own bass. Try "Romeo at Juliard" which features a cover of "Cool" from West Side Story that features very good electric bass reproduction. He has also covered "Fever" on an Arthur Alexander tribute cd (I forget the title) to similar effect. These do not showcase deep, thunderous bass, but are effective (to my ear) electric bass guitar recordings.
Some suggestions: "Secret World" by Peter Gabriel has bass that wraps around and envelopes you in a way that's difficult to explain until you experience it. Tool on any of their cds has generally some of the coolest bass tones ever recorded. "Perfect Drug" by Nine Inch Nails is a tour de force of interesting sounds of all kinds but the bass will shake the house with the right speakers.
I happened to revisit Jennifer Warnes yesterday for the first time in ages. Her record/cd "The Hunter" has impressive bass guitar/drums on several tracks. It recalls Rickie Lee Jones "We Belong Together" (I believe that song is on her eponymously titled cd) in sound quality, although RLJ is, for me, much the more interesting artist.
Any Jah Wobble generally has excellent bass.
But if you can find his 12" (may be available on cd too) of 'The sun does rise' the B-side Oh Namah Shiva is simply stunning. Btw I could be wrong about the single but its one of the 12"'s :)
Yello are great to listen to anyway. Don't remember about the bass.
Also Bob Marley. Particularly Catch a Fire.