But, wow. After adjusting the truss rod (and doing a far, far better job at it then the last folks who attempted that repair), resetting the neck angle, setting the string height, and slapping on a new set of bright, punchy strings, the bass actually has a realistic action for the first time in years, and plays, well, like a bass should play. It's never sounded so good, honestly. I'm going to keep it after all.
However, this sets me back a little bit, because now that that bass sounds so much better and isn't such a trial to play, I've decided to re-record the basslines for the two tracks I've already finished with. That shouldn't take up too much time, though. Yesterday I finished the last of the guitar lines by laying down a searing, rumbling roar of a rhythm track on the brief bridge that we've dubbed "the rockout part" of one of the songs. I think it sounds great, and will only improve with some proper mixing.
Once I nail those two bass tracks again (probably later today), the only thing left to do will be, possibly, a bowed bass part on the last track. As I don't have an upright, though, I'll have to use a synth there, and as there's already a very prominent synth in the track, I want the bassline to sound as much like a bowed bass as possible. I've been playing around with Pro-52, which has some great organ tones and really interesting synth sounds, but which (like just about any synth you could name) seems to have no bass sounds that sound like they'd fit in anywhere other than an 80s knock-off. So far, I haven't had any luck in tweaking the dials to turn any of those sounds around in such a way that they can even loosely approximate the bowed sound I'm going for. I have, however, found a lot of settings that make for some really interesting sound collages. I'm staying on task, though. No sound collages (and no more recording metal, either) until after the basslines are all in place, whether or not this bowed part is a go.