Check out the list of influences of most any bass player going these days, and you will find a sworn allegiance to Primus's Les Claypool, who for seven albums and countless side projects and guest appearances has been warping the fat-stringed minds of rock bassmen everywhere. Jokey in all places as far as lyrics, stage presence and overall imagery goes, each time Claypool picks up his instrument in front of an audience he puts on a bass-guitar clinic. You would be hard-pressed to find a mainstream band with more complicated time signatures and snakier rhythms, and Primus's stamp is felt on newer bands from Minus the Bear to System of a Down. Newbies should go first to 1991's Sailing the Seas of Cheese, for "Jerry Was a Race Car Driver" among other cuts. The band hasn't released a proper studio work since 1999's Antipop, but assure their fans this summer will come bearing new music. For now, you can download a rehearsal session for free on their official Web site.
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