Chris Squire -
We simply wouldn't have existed without him.
In 2003, when Rob and I were starting to find musical common ground, I lent him my CD copy of Yes' Relayer. Up until then, he'd been a young bass player in a punk band for whom the Mars Volta had left the door ajar to more complex music. Within 6 months of hearing 'Relayer', Anubis was a thing and Robert had spent hours and hours studying Squire's playing and sound. And even bought a Rickenbacker to get him slightly closer to that sound.
That influence of Chris Squire is all over 230503 and HtB upon which Robert played bass. When Nick Antoinette joined us, he was already a fan of Yes and knew exactly what he was signing up for. And as such Chris' influence is all over 'A Tower of Silence' too. And when people say nice things about the bass parts in Anubis' songs, it's got a lot to do with our appreciation for the brilliance of Chris Squire.
Not many musicians are that singular in their field. There are many other bass players who are probably more technical, many who are even more upfront in the mix.
But there are far fewer that I know of that had such an instinctive knowledge of harmony and counterpoint, allied to a original, elegant and phenomenally powerful style and sound, further allied to terrifyingly fast fingers (on a Rickenbacker, no less) and a cavalier attitude. He made it not only OK to play bass with a pick, he made it sound better than just about everyone else. The power of Entwhistle and the melodicism of McCartney. He was a product of his time that managed to transcend time.
In his heyday, there really was nobody like him. Nearly half a century later, there are people who play music that pays an obvious homage to that trailblazing work. But there really is still nobody like him.
- David Eaton