So, I've been working on this song that uses a chord progression that modulates 1/2 step down each change.

The first time, rhythm guitar chugs out the following harmonies...

> G3 > G3 > F# 3 > F3 > E5

Underneath a little minor triad/seventh arpeggio bit that follows the root movement. So, it's kind of like an altered chord in the sense that the 3 and the b3 are present, making it sound a little bit like a 7#9 chord descending chromatically.

The last E minor arpeggio becomes a G major 7th arpeggio during the last half of the bar and segues into a riff roughly based on the same ideas with the following harmonies present

> Gmaj7 > Gmaj7 > F#maj7 > Fmaj7 > 1-2 beat mute strum break, bass plays an E

The riff itself is cool sounding and implies the IV chord each time, but I'm having trouble getting it to go anywhere other than E lydian after the little break. Can someone give me some ideas as to where/how to make this go other places? I would like to get some kind of riff based around a chord progression in a specific key for a chorus.

Last edited by STONESHAKER at Sep 20, 2011,
That progressions sounds kind of like the intro to "The Psalm Of Lydia" by Nevermore.
That sounded off-topic, but if you're completely stuck, it's useful to look at similar progressions in other songs, and see what they do (but not rip them off, of course). I'd suggest extending the last Emaj7 chord a bar or two (a six-bar phrase wouldn't sound bad) and resolving it to Ebm, which is similar to what Nevermore does.
Eb minor, you say!? Okay. I mean, I wanted to get into some kind of monster pentatonic riff from there, but why Eb minor? I guess I can understand how you could resolve to E minor from E major because E minor is the relative minor of G major, which is basically the harmony the progression starts at. Correct me if I'm wrong about that btw.

So why Eb minor? I want to understand these things.
Last edited by STONESHAKER at Sep 20, 2011,
What I'm picturing is starting into a different progression after what you have, which starts with Ebm. The implied key changes with each chord anyway (G->F#->F etc), so you might as well take it to Ebm.
Is this a problem with not being able to play a low enough Eb because you're tuned to standard? If you only go down to an F# (Gb if you want to get technical), it'll still sound pretty heavy.
Well, I could always tune it down... why does it go from major to minor on the last change though?
I think it resolves nicely. Think of it as a II->i resolution in Phrygian mode. Is the minor tonality the problem? What style is this going to be?
It's not a problem, I just want to know why. I get it now though; it would be an Eb minor because we moved a half step down from the IV chord, E major 7th. Now it makes sense.

Thanks for the idea bro.