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Spencer playing in Hella at the High Five in Columbus, Ohio
|Born||January 28, 1981|
|Genres||Math rock, experimental rock|
|Associated acts||Hella, sBACH, The Advantage, Solos|
Spencer Seim (born January 28, 1981) is an American musician, best known as the guitarist in the band Hella. He is also the drummer in the Nintendo music cover band called The Advantage and has a solo project named sBACH. The sticker on the cover of the self-titled release says "a thousand times better than Hella or The Advantage".
Spencer's guitars, SF3 and SF0SS, are designed by Scott French. They feature a nut pickup, a built-in amplified egg shaker, and individual outputs for each string pickup. His own beard clippings are used in the finish of the SF0SS. In February 2006 Spencer bought another Scott French guitar, made of eucalyptus and grafted walnut measuring ½ inch thick around the outside edge of the guitar's entire body. This is the only guitar Spencer used on Hella's 2007 release There's No 666 in Outer Space.
When Hella was a two piece, Spencer only used a Boss LS-2 Line Selector to switch between distortion and clean tones. He played a Bently "Flowercaster" (a Telecaster copy) and used a Mesa Boogie Mark III amp with white tolex. On the tour following the release of Church Gone Wild/Chirpin' Hard, Spencer was seen with an expanded setup using a pedal board.
His composition style is mode heavy. He has been practicing on and off with Zach Hill (Hella drummer) since they both started playing music and both have been influencing each other throughout their musicianship. While playing for Hella (as a two piece), he strums while muting certain strings with his left hand, giving him the ability to play clear melodies while voicing chords without sacrificing power for either. He also uses two hand tapping to play from disparate areas of the fret board, and he uses rapid tremolo picking to create an intense, droning effect. Polyrhythms often appear throughout his compositions, giving the impression of two instruments playing instead of one. Playing for The Advantage, Spencer drums employing methods such as repetitive doubles on a single bass drum and quick cymbal muting. Spencer's style also often incorporates complex time signatures, well evidenced on Chirpin' Hard and recordings by the Advantage.
- "Beast of Both Worlds" (September 11, 2012, Joyful Noise Recordings)
- "Grok" (September 27, 2011, Jackpot Records)
With The Advantage
- The Advantage (April 6, 2004, 5RC)
- 2004 West Coast Tour CD (February 2004, self-released)
- 2004 US Tour CD (October 2004, self-released)
- Elf Titled (January 24, 2006, 5RC)
- "Underwear: So Big!" 2006 Tour CD-R (August 2006, self-released)
- Hold Your Horse Is CD/LP (2002, 5RC)
- The Devil Isn't Red CD (2004, 5RC)
- Church Gone Wild/Chirpin' Hard 2xCD (2005, Suicide Squeeze)
- There's No 666 in Outer Space CD (2007, Ipecac Recordings)
- Tripper CD (2011, Sargent House)
- Leather Diamond CD-R EP (2001)
- Falam Dynasty 7" (2002, 5RC)
- Bitches Ain't Shit But Good People EP (2003, Suicide Squeeze)
- Total Bugs Bunny On Wild Bass EP (2003, Narnack Records)
- Acoustics EP (2004 & 2005, Toad Records (Japan); 2006, 5RC (US), with additional songs)
- Concentration Face/Homeboy DVD/CD EP (2005, 5RC)
- Live 2xCD (Sick Room, October 10, 2003) (with Dilute)
- Hella/Four Tet Split 7" (Ache, March 12, 2004) (with Four Tet)