I've played for a year now, I'm self taught and I think it is time for theory now that I've grasped the basics of the guitar. The style of music I want to create and play is something like metallica and trivium, metal. What kind of musical theory is going to help me best to play, create and understand this type of music ? I would appreciate if you guys could link something or just give me tips!
Quote by seljer
Music theory is not specific to any genre, it all applies!

It's true. Don't try and limit how much you learn...try and learn everything!
Quote by pjuckazz
Oh well :P any good links or tips where to start?

Knowledge of intervals would be a great place to start.

And as has been said, everything applies to everything!
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Well tritones are metally I guess... but you know... all theory applies...

EDIT: Check out ZeGuitarist's lessons...
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and then there's free jazz, which isn't even for musicians.

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As my old guitar teacher once said: Metal really comes from classical music. The only difference is pinch harmonics, double bass, and lyrics about killing goats.
Last edited by Dream Floyd at Jan 1, 2010,
Simple brah, do like Kirk Hammett did, and go and slam down that NASTY
Em blues pentatonic scale, slap your KH Dunlop wah, and youll ask why you even
considered learning the other ones!

(Not trolling, just sounded funny in my head.)
Quote by pjuckazz
got that, but where should I start? There's so much in the internetz

thats where a teacher and or a book comes in handy.
shred is gaudy music
start by memorizing all the notes on the fretboard.
then learn intervals and the major scale.
then im not sure...

thats what im trying to doing right now
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There are two important things you must do;

1: Learn the "universal" music theory.
2: Analyse and apply that theory to metal songs in order to understand what is going on.

Another thing is to understand the different forms of dissonance, be it tri-tones or minor scecond intervals etc. and how they work.
Quote by DiminishedFifth
Start Here

Does nobody remember the Crusades articles?

I do, and I'm highly critical about them. Nice try, but I see the Emperors new clothes. Just because its written friendly doesn't mean its user friendly when it comes to teaching the content. That is not to say that it's bad, but it is nearly impossible to bring this concept in a series of articles. This was something I fortunately realized when I was approached by two publishing companies.

All material in theory is give and take. The material should not be available wholesale to any web clicker, and here's why - ITS IMPOTENT!

It's worthless, because to REALLY understand it, you have to STOP at the end of one section, and make sure you drill on it, and spend time with it before you move on. But guess what, WE DONT. We blaze right ahead fixing our heads with knowledge, and so we have no foundation, just the "Oh I understand" claims when we truly DON'T.

Then you take it the other way, theres a lot of pre-required knowledge, the acquiring it, to truly understand theory, is DRY and ABSTRACT and BORING and TIME CONSUMING.

There is a huge challenge to make something simple. What my theory is, is people on this side of music theory, got here our own ways, so that when we see these things, WE naturally understand it, but we have no idea how to relate to the eyes of the person who HAS NOT had our training and experience and background.

I am a teacher, I am an instructor, its what I do every day. I'm forced constantly to look at things from the perspective of someone that has no background in what I'm about to teach, and create something that will be relevant and easy to understand through their eyes. But, I also REQUIRE that they put something back into it, via homework, tests, drills. I'm not just passing them to the next lecture before they've finished it. The Crusades are only as good as the readers' self discipline to stop and stay with a section for a while.

That's only one of my criticisms with the Crusade articles.

If you want a great guy to look at, as far as online content, I highly respect and recommend Mike Dodge. He does as well a job as anyone, and he IS a teacher, and so he has his stuff down, and workable, still, you have to put the time into each section. If you blow through it, you'll come up wanting.
Last edited by Sean0913 at Jan 1, 2010,
Quote by MikeDodge
Let me show you one of the coolest ideas to use when playing Metal, or other music using power chords...the results are much but than 'canned scales'...


This idea is a little bit of music magic, and fits better than a full scale...because it takes you out of common forms. Read and try it.

That Is pretty cool.
I have a linear problem and I think that's gonna help alot.
These are very good examples of the way to approach songs, because they help you think outside of scales and more within the chords or triads. It really works when you're in triads, when you get good at it, you can start adding things like 7ths.

To really use this, a grasp of the fundamentals of the musical alphabet and the knowing of them on the strings of the guitar/notes on the neck is an important skill to have.
Quote by pjuckazz
interesting there mike, but what is the downside of that method?

I haven't found a downfall with it at all...except that many times I forget to go through the process

Working with it as power chords it REALLY help trim out notes of the scale that don't carry a lot of weight in the song/progression. And it helps cut down of the rut of the linear/finger pattern style of playing, like JudgeDrey said.

But if you figure out the triads of each chord then you'll end up finding all the notes of the scale full scale...which might contain more notes than a basic 7 notes scale in some cases.

Because of the lack of linearity, I think it sounds more melodic, and meaning full.

I think I covered all that in the lesson, but it's been a while since I wrote it. One thing to take from it is...and I know I mention it in the lesson...

Full scales are not ALL the notes you want to play, but all the notes you MIGHT want to play.

This idea definitely helps you find the notes you MIGHT want to use from the scale.
Really interesting, I'll work with it. My only big problem is that I need an article that covers, let's say... the very basics of music theory, like what is a triad? 5ths? 7ths? diminished and augmented? How to know in what key I am in and such... Have you written about that stuff or do you have any recommended sites to start? I'm very new to music theory...
You could always ask in your local music shop for beginner's theory books, even a kid's one will get you started
I would rather be flawed and wise, than perfect and blind.
Quote by pjuckazz
Really interesting, I'll work with it. My only big problem is that I need an article that covers, let's say... the very basics of music theory, like what is a triad? 5ths? 7ths? diminished and augmented? How to know in what key I am in and such... Have you written about that stuff or do you have any recommended sites to start? I'm very new to music theory...

I got ya covered...go here: http://lessons.mikedodge.com/

Then read the top three links in this particular order as one picks up where the last one left off:

Chord Construction
Diatonic Theory/Modes

These three will cover a ton of theory stuff that will help you build a solid foundation and it will also last you the rest of your life. Remember to work through them in that order.

Once you're through those you can take a look at the rest of the links there...you're going to want that foundation before you tackle the other stuff.
Quote by nomu
Thanks for that site Mike... great stuff

No problem. Take your time with it.

Personally, I'd go through each section about 3 times as you'll start to build on the things you remember from the last time you read it.

Back in the days I used to read the material I had over and over and over. It really helped me build a solid foundation for not only understanding theory but also recognizing how it's applied when you get into deeper concepts.