Hey everyone, I would like to hear some advices on practicing metal rhythm techniques. I mean chugging, alternate picking, galopping, downpicking everything on pm or without. You know what I mean. That's pretty much my biggest weakness and I want to practice it hard.

Solid, powerful, perfect metal rhythm guitar is what I want more than super fast soloing.
I want riffing like Gojira, LoG, Decapitated. Practicing is not problem, I can dedicate hours just on this. Just how.

Currently I practice like this:
- Playing one riff over drum backing track with raising speed to warm up
- Playing 16th alternate picking notes on pm with metronome. Btw I find it easier to play 140bpm than 120bpm since my technique is quite different on palm muting than normal picking. Anyway there's not much tension, I just tense my index finger sometimes. Otherwise movements are pretty natural and relaxed, coming from wrist.
- Playing downpicking, galopping, uppicking ( yes uppicking ). Everything with metronome.
- Inventing riffs mixing those techniques and practicing them to metronome/drum tracks.

There's my way of holding pick, maybe it's terrible:
- http://oi61.tinypic.com/19wq4p.jpg

ultex 1.0

Looking forward for your advices, every help appreciated
Last edited by szanks at Jul 14, 2014,
It's all about practice, as it is with pretty much everything.

Quote by szanks
Btw I find it easier to play 140bpm than 120bpm since my technique is quite different on palm muting than normal picking.

This should not be the case. Your technique should be identical if not very similar for pretty much every technique you do.

Also looking at the way you hold the pick.. Others may not agree but to me i wouldn't be surprised if you lose grip etc of the pick too frequently with that method. Your thumb seems too far forward. The most strength and best grip comes from the end of your thumb, not the middle of it (which is where your thumb seems to be gripping the majority of the pick). It'll be interesting to see what others think regarding the way you hold the pick, but i would adjust it ever so slightly. It's a somewhat subjective matter sometimes when talking about holding the pick correctly.

Have you ever tried thicker picks by the way? A lot of aggressive playing styles (obviously LoG) benefit from using thicker picks. I personally use Dunlop Gator Grip 2.0 (the subtle almost powder like grip is really nice).
If you want to analyze any metal player in particular i'd probably look at Andy James and see what he suggests and how he plays. His technique is pretty much the best in the business for metal.

Maybe look in to the video's relevant to this one?
Last edited by vayne92 at Jul 14, 2014,
I gonna check this whole DVD from licklibrary.
Willie and Mark from LoG uses 1.0 and 1.14.
I tried tons of picks and best for me is 1.0 tortex/ultex.

And about holding pick, yes it's subjective but I think I have problem with that.
I often lose grip, I often lose stability. And having the same technique all the time is another thing I work on. Lets wait for other ppl words of wisdom.
A good way to practice techniques like this is to take songs where one or more is present, slow it right down and learn to play it, with very accurate relaxed picking. Relaxation is the key to improving your picking in any situation.
Try songs like Eye of the Beholder by Metallica (or anything from And Justice For All really), anything by Sylosis, if you like Lamb of God then Desolation is sick for it.

It's also a lot more fun/interesting than chugging through impersonal exercises!
My stuff

Gibson Les Paul Studio
Ibanez ADC120
Tanglewood TGRF VS
Blackstar HT20
Roland Micro Cube
Last edited by lfcagger at Jul 17, 2014,
Right now I'm working on repairing my technique. I want to have the same technique for rhythm playing and lead playing. I'll be working also on some songs, focusing on relaxed and accurate playing.
And I tried to play thicker pick and now I'm in love with Tortex III 1.35, this thing is awesome.