Top 10 Metal Songs with Fretless Bass

I love the distinctive sound of the fretless bass which adds something different to the songs.

Fretless bass players are true masters because it's much harder to play bass with no frets.

Fretless bass is used in both extreme and non-extreme metal but I fully enjoy its sound in songs that have softer sections - slower or/and not very loud section. Even when fretless bass is played throughout, you really hear its unique sound in the softer parts of the songs. Progressive / technical compositions are very suitable for that and for this list I have selected songs that have softer parts. Most of them are progressive and technical death metal.

The Top Ten

1 Dracula - Iced Earth Dracula - Iced Earth

Bassist - Steve DiGiorgio. He's got a very clean tone in this song (2001).
If you play the song sample you can hear clearly the specific sound of the fretless bass.
Isn't it beautiful?
In the song it's during the slow intro, esp. 0:55-1:40. - Metal_Treasure

2 Septuagint - Obscura Septuagint - Obscura

Bassist - Jeroen Paul Thesseling.
Another great song with both heavier and softer parts (2011). - Metal_Treasure

3 The Philosopher - Death The Philosopher - Death

This song is certainly the pioneer of fretless bass in metal. An essential

Bassist - Steve DiGiorgio
One of the earlier uses of fretless bass in extreme metal (1993).There's an official music video to this song where you can see Steve DiGiorgio with his fretless bass. - Metal_Treasure

4 Silence Calls the Storm - Quo Vadis

Bassist - Steve DiGiorgio
You can hear it even on the song sample. - Metal_Treasure

5 Omnipresent Perception - Beyond Creation

Bassist - Dominic Forest Lapointe - Metal_Treasure

6 Universe Momentum - Obscura

*sigh*...Not many people explore Obscura, This song's great, Hear it folks! - Ananya

Bassist - Jeroen Paul Thesseling - Metal_Treasure

7 Orbital Elements - Obscura

Bassist - Jeroen Paul Thesseling
Part of it is on the song sample. This is a soft instrumental and is easy to hear the bass from the very beginning. - Metal_Treasure

8 Intra Venus - Ne Obliviscaris

Bassist - Robin Zielhorst
A song from their 2017 album coming out next week, Oct 27. - Metal_Treasure

9 Jealousy - Death

Bassist - Steve Di Giorgio.
You can hear the fretless bass better at 2:50-3:00 - Metal_Treasure

10 Anticosmic Overload - Obscura

Bassist - Jeroen Paul Thesseling.
There's an Official music video to this song (by RelapseRecords) showing how the band plays this song and you can see the bassist with his 6-string fretless bass (he can play a 7-string, too). - Metal_Treasure

The Contenders

11 Until It Sleeps - Metallica

I am 99% sure that this sound comes from a fretless bass although Jason Newsted isn't known for using it. But Jason clearly slides between the notes which is possible on fretless bass, creating its specific smooth sound. Insiders claim that have seen Jason with fretless bass.
I am not 100% sure because:
1) there is no credible info source about that
2) some guys fake the sound of fretless on fretted bass. But I personally think that Jason would rather use fretless than faking its sound. Also, the fake sound doesn't sound like that. - Metal_Treasure

12 Trapped in a Corner - Death

Bassist - Steve Di Giorgio (you can hear it clearly twice on the song sample). - Metal_Treasure

13 Centric Flow - Obscura
14 Break the Cycle - Quo Vadis

Bassist - Steve Di Giorgio (a death metal song of 2004). - Metal_Treasure

15 Velocity - Obscura

Bassist - Jeroen Paul Thesseling - Metal_Treasure

16 Mentally Blind - Death

Bassist - Steve Di Giorgio.
It's most distinctive in the middle of the song - Metal_Treasure

17 Celestial Spheres - Obscura
18 Aevum - Obscura
19 Eagle Fly Free - Helloween
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Top 10 Metal Albums with Fretless Bass Top 10 Fretless Bass Players Top 10 Metal Fretless Bassists Top 10 Rock and Metal Songs with the Best Bass Intros Top 10 Metal Songs with the Best Bass

List StatsCreated 12 Oct 2017
Updated 16 Jul 2018

19 listings
2 years, 33 days old

Top Remixes

1. Dracula - Iced Earth
2. Omnipresent Perception - Beyond Creation
3. Septuagint - Obscura


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