Metal guitar can be a lot of fun, but it can also be quite challenging. If you are new to the world of metal guitar, or if you are looking for some tips and tricks to help improve your playing, then you have come to the right place. In this article, we will answer some common questions about metal guitar playing, and we will also provide some helpful tips that will make the learning process a little bit easier.
Table of Contents
What guitar to choose?
One common question that many new metal guitar players have is what kind of guitar they should buy. There are a few things to consider when making this decision, but the most important factor is probably the type of music you want to play. If you are interested in playing heavier metal music, then you will want to choose a guitar with a higher output. On the other hand, if you are looking to play more traditional metal or rock music, then you might want to consider a guitar with a lower output.If you are taller or have larger hands, then you might want to choose a guitar with a bigger body and neck. Conversely, if you are shorter or have smaller hands, then you might want to choose a guitar with a smaller body and neck.
In terms of specific brands and models, there are too many options to list here. However, we would recommend doing some research online and reading reviews from other guitar players before making your final decision.
Reading guitar tabs
Learn the basics of rhythm
One of the first things you need to do is learn the basics of rhythm. This means learning how to count time, and being able to keep a steady beat. You can practice this by using a metronome, or by tapping your foot along with the music.
Once you have the basics down, you can start learning some basic guitar riffs. Start with something simple, like a power chord riff. Then, once you get that down, you can move on to something more complex. There are plenty of resources online that will help you learn how to play metal guitar riffs.
Power chords are one of the staples of metal guitar playing. They are easy to play and create a very heavy sound. Power chords are simply two notes played together, usually the root note and the fifth. To play a power chord, you just need to hold down two strings with your left hand and then strum with your right hand.
There are many different ways to play power chords, but one of the most common is to hold down the low E string with your index finger and then place your middle finger on the A string. Then you can strum with your right hand. Another way to play power chords is to hold down the low E string with your ring finger and place your pinky on the high E string. This might be a bit more difficult for beginners, but it’s worth learning as it gives you more options when playing.
Once you’ve learned how to play power chords, you can start adding in other notes to create more interesting sounds. One of the most common ways to do this is by adding in an octave. An octave is simply a doubling of the root note. So, if you’re playing a power chord on the low E string, you can add in an octave by also holding down the 12th fret on the low E string with your pinky finger. This will give you a much fuller sound.
You can also add in other notes from the scale to create different sounding chords. For example, you could add a minor third to create a minor chord, or a major third to create a major chord. Experiment with different combinations of notes to see what sounds you can create.
Palm muting technique
Most metal guitarists use a lot of palm muting to create that signature sound. Palm muting is when you place the edge of your picking hand right above the bridge and lightly rest the base of your palm on the strings. This technique allows you to mute the strings so they don’t ring out as much.
To get started, try this exercise:
- Place your picking hand in position so that the edge of your palm is resting just above the bridge.
- With your fretting hand, hold down the low E string at the fifth fret.
- Now pick the string with an upstroke and then quickly place your palm on the string to mute it.
- You should hear a “chuck” sound.
- Repeat this exercise with the other strings.
Once you’re comfortable with palm muting, you can start using it in your playing. Experiment with different techniques and see what sounds best to you.
A lot of metal guitarists use a technique called “down picking” which is when you pick the string with a downward motion. This technique combined with palm muting will give you that signature metal sound.
Guitar riffs and licks
Guitar riffs and licks are the heart of metal music. If you want to be a good metal guitarist, you need to learn how to play fast and accurately. But speed is not everything – you also need to know how to use dynamics and create interesting sounding phrases.
Learning guitar scales is a great way to improve your guitar playing, regardless of what style you’re into. Scales can help you learn the fretboard, improve your technique and speed, and allow you to solo over backing tracks or improvise with other musicians.
There are many different types of scales, but for metal guitarists, the most important ones are the major and minor pentatonic scales. The major pentatonic scale is used in lots of rock and blues songs, while the minor pentatonic is used in more aggressive styles like metal and punk.
To learn these scales, start by finding the root note on the low E string. For the A minor pentatonic scale, this would be the fifth fret. Then, simply follow the pattern of notes shown in the diagrams below.
Once you’ve memorized the shapes of these scales, practice playing them up and down the fretboard. Start slow and gradually increase your speed as you get comfortable with the patterns.
You can also use these scales to solo over backing tracks or chord progressions. Experiment with different rhythms and note placements to create your own unique sound.
Metal guitarists should learn how to play both the major and minor pentatonic scales. These scales will help you improvise and solo over backing tracks or chord progressions. To learn these scales, start by finding the root note on the low E string, then simply follow the pattern of notes shown in the diagrams below. Once you’ve memorized the shapes of these scales, practice playing them up and down the fretboard. Start slow and gradually increase your speed as you get comfortable with the patterns. Experiment with different rhythms and note placements to create your own unique sound.
Improvisation is the key.
If you want to play metal guitar, you need to be able to improvise. This means that you need to be able to come up with your own solos and licks on the spot. You can’t just rely on memorizing other people’s solos or riffs.Find some friends who also play guitar (or any other instrument) and start jamming together. Don’t worry about sounding perfect, just have fun and see what happens.
You can also try improvising over backing tracks. There are tons of backing tracks available online, or you can create your own using a recording program like GarageBand or Audacity. Start by improvising simple melodies over the backing track, then try adding in some more complex licks and solos.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes when you’re improvising. Mistakes are part of the learning process. The more you experiment, the better you’ll get at it.
If you’re just starting out, it’s also a good idea to learn some basic theory. Knowing how to read music and understanding key signatures and chord progressions will help you a lot when it comes to improvisation.
There are plenty of resources available online (and in libraries) that can teach you guitar theory. Once you have a basic understanding of theory, you’ll be able to use that knowledge to come up with your own solos and licks.
7 Fundamental Metal Guitar Techniques
If you want to play metal guitar, you need to know how to use hexatonic patterns. Hexatonic patterns are six-note sequences that can be used to create riffs and solos. These patterns are essential for metal guitarists because they allow you to create fast, aggressive sounding licks.
To learn how to use hexatonic patterns, start by learning the following four shapes:
The first shape is known as the “root” position. To play this shape, start on the root note of the pattern and then play each note in order up to the sixth fret. For example, if you were playing a C Major hexatonic pattern, your root position would look like this:
The second shape is known as the “first inversion.” To play this shape, start on the second note of the pattern and then play each note in order up to the sixth fret. For example, if you were playing a C Major hexatonic pattern, your first inversion would look like this:
The third shape is known as the “second inversion.” To play this shape, start on the fourth note of the pattern and then play each note in order up to the sixth fret. For example, if you were playing a C Major hexatonic pattern, your second inversion would look like this:
The fourth and final shape is known as the “third inversion.” To play this shape, start on the fifth note of the pattern and then play each note in order up to the sixth fret. For example, if you were playing a C Major hexatonic pattern, your third inversion would look like this:
Now that you know the four shapes, practice them until you can play them smoothly. Once you have these shapes down, you can start creating riffs and solos using hexatonic patterns.
The Neverending Scale
Guitarists who want to play metal guitar need to know how to solo. And in order to do that, they need to learn scales. A lot of them. In fact, they need to learn so many scales that it might seem like an impossible task. But don’t worry, it’s not as hard as it seems. With a little bit of practice, you’ll be able to play any scale you want.
The most important thing to remember when learning scales is that there is no such thing as the perfect scale. There are only the scales that sound good to you and the ones that don’t. So don’t be afraid to experiment with different scales until you find the ones that you like best.
Hexatonic Shapes in “Erotomania” Solo
Erotomania is a great solo to learn because it has some really cool sounding metal licks in it. It also uses a lot of pentatonic and hexatonic shapes, which are essential for any metal guitarist to know. In this section, we’re going to take a look at the hexatonic shapes used in the Erotomania solo.
If you’re not familiar with hexatonic scales, they’re simply six-note scales that can be formed by combining two adjacent minor or major scale patterns. For example, the A minor hexatonic scale can be formed by combining the A minor pentatonic scale (A C D E G) with the A blues scale (A C D E G Bb).
There are two hexatonic shapes used in the Erotomania solo, both of which are based on the A minor pentatonic scale. The first shape is played at the beginning of the solo, and consists of the notes A C D E G. The second shape is played later on in the solo, and consists of the notes A C D Eb G.
Both of these shapes are essential for any metal guitarist to know, so make sure you learn them well! In the next section, we’ll take a look at how to apply these shapes to create some awesome sounding metal licks.
An octave is simply doubling the pitch. So, if you’re playing a low E on the sixth string, the next octave would be found on the 12th fret of that same string (an E an octave higher).
You can use this to your advantage by playing two different notes in quick succession and then returning to the original note. This technique is often used in metal guitar solos and is a great way to add some extra interest to your playing.
To do this, simply find two notes that are an octave apart and play them back-to-back. For example, you could play the low E on the sixth string followed by the high E on the first string. Or, you could play the A on the fifth string followed by the high E on the first string.
Once you’ve got the hang of this, try adding in some other notes from the pentatonic scale to create your own solos. Remember, there are no rules when it comes to soloing, so experiment and have fun!
If you’re finding that your metal guitar playing is sounding a bit stale, then it might be time to add some octaves into your solos. Octaves are a great way to add interest and variety to your playing, and they can really help to take your sound to the next level. So why not give them a try today? You might just be surprised at what you can come up with!
Relative Pentatonic Shapes
The minor and major pentatonic shapes that you know and love can be played all over the fretboard, as long as you know the root notes. A great way to learn the fretboard is by learning relative pentatonic shapes. This means finding the pattern starting on different notes other than the low E or A string.
Here’s an example of the A minor pentatonic shape starting on the low E string at the fifth fret:
And here it is starting on the D string at the tenth fret:
As you can see, both of these shapes contain exactly the same notes, they just start in a different place. So once you’ve learned one shape, you’ve really learned two – you can just move it up or down the fretboard to find the root note you want.
This is a great way to start learning your way around the fretboard, and it’s also useful for when you’re soloing and want to change position mid-solo. If you get stuck in one place, you can always move up or down to another shape that contains the same notes.
Sweep Picking Technique
This is a great technique for playing fast runs and arpeggios. It can take some practice to get the hang of it, but once you do, it’ll be a valuable tool in your arsenal.
Here’s how it works: you play each note in an arpeggio or run individually, using a sweeping motion with your pick. This means that, rather than picking all the notes in one go, you pick each one individually.
It can take some practice to get the timing right, but once you do it’ll sound great. And it’s a great way to make complex runs and arpeggios sound effortless.
One of the things that can make metal guitar playing interesting is octave displacement. This technique involves playing a note an octave above or below the original note.This creates a lot of tension and can be used to create interesting sounding licks.
Another way to use octave displacement is to play two notes at the same time that are an octave apart. This is called an interval and it can create some really cool sounding harmonies. Intervals can be played anywhere on the fretboard and there are many different ways to approach them.
Is metal guitar hard to play?
This is a common question, and the answer is… it depends! If you’re a complete beginner, then yes, metal guitar can be quite challenging. However, if you have some experience with other styles of guitar playing, then metal shouldn’t be too difficult to pick up. The key is to start slow and practice regularly.
Can any guitar play metal?
The answer is yes and no. Any guitar can technically play metal, but in order to get that signature metal sound you’re going to want a guitar that’s built for it. That means a solid body electric guitar with high-output pickups.
Now, there are different types of metal and each one requires a slightly different approach when it comes to playing guitar. For example, thrash metal is going to require a lot of fast palm muting while death metal might require more use of the tremolo arm.
What is a metal guitar called?
A metal guitar is typically an electric guitar that is designed and built for playing hard rock or heavy metal music. Metal guitars usually have thicker bodies than other types of electric guitars, which helps to create a heavier, more aggressive sound. They also often have higher-output pickups and hotter-sounding amps to further accentuate this sound.
While there is no one “right” way to play a metal guitar, there are some common techniques that many metal guitarists use. For example, palm muting is often used to create a chugging rhythm sound, while using a wah pedal can help create signature “wailing” lead sounds.
Do you need humbuckers for metal?
If you want to play metal guitar, you don’t need humbuckers. Any type of pickup will do the job. The important thing is to have a high-gain amplifier that can produce a lot of distortion.
However, if you’re looking for the best possible sound, then humbucking pickups are definitely the way to go. They’ll give you a fuller, richer sound that’s perfect for metal.
Is a Strat good for metal?
The Fender Stratocaster is a versatile guitar that can be used for many genres, including metal. If you’re looking for a guitar to play metal, the Stratocaster is a good option.
Useful Video: METAL GUITAR FOR BEGINNERS: 6 Techniques You MUST Learn
So there you have it – some tips, tricks and common questions answered on how to play metal guitar. We hope you found this guide helpful and that it’s given you the confidence to start shredding those guitars like a pro! If you have any other questions or suggestions, please feel free to leave them in the comments below. Until next time, happy guitar playing!