Okay, I have a problem, and UG hasn't failed me yet.

I'm the rhythm guitarist in a metal band. Have been for a while now. In the beginning, I simply learned parts from older songs which had rhythm parts already. Then we started on new material, and the Lead Guitarist would write a rhythm part, which i would duplicate. Then he would add a lead to go over it. This is all well and good for the songwriting process, but it leaves me feeling like i'm not contributing.

I want to contribute, but both metal and riff-writing are fields i have no sense of. The songs i write on my own consist of chord progressions and tuning no lower then Eb. For the metal band, i need to figure out how to go about writing backing riffs to go with dropped-d, open notes and all that fun metal stuff. Any tips for any kind of theory i can try to apply?

Thanks a bunch. My apologies for the length.

Maybe you could try playing some songs of bands that sound like yours, just to see what kind of techniques they are using and then apply them to a song you write? Maybe try some Lamb of God, i know they're drop D tuning, and that will help your speed as well. Listen to some opeth for some cool sounds and chords you wouldn't have thought of otherwise.

Anything you write comes from your head first, so train your ear to play what you hear in your head. ( I know easier said than done, but with practice you can do it)

Sorry if this wasnt much help, i've just never really had this apply to me.

Good luck.
oh... man, metal riffing aint that hard to figure out...

get good at galloping... like, using an 8th note with 2 16ths... thats what galloping is... then experiment with pedal tone riffs, just let the open E be your pedal tone...

tremelo picking can really liven up something boring...

bla bla bla, its all pretty generic...
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What kind of metal, may I ask? Pantera-style groove, Trivium-style metalcore, Slayer-type thrash, black like Emperor, death like Death ( ), technical death like Nile, etc.? That would be useful information for us.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.

Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
^ Sorry about that. Um, i can't really define our sound. My Lead guitarist writes the majority of our stuff, and his style is: John Pretucci(sp), Zakk Wylde, and then bands like Dope, Nothingface and Devil Driver. Our Bassist is really into Tool kind of techinial stuff. If you can put those together in your head, thats how it should sound.

And whats a pedal tone?


[EDIT] Brainfart, i could send the site link.
the quality is....crap. So is the mixing, and most other things. Its a crappy basement demo, but there are 3 songs to give you an idea of the outcome.
Last edited by Schiz31 at Jan 5, 2007,
^a pedal tone is a note that repeats itself in a riff or passage at given points...for example

E| 0-2-0-4-0-5-0-7-0-9-0-11-0-12

the open e is the pedal tone...or in terms of rhythm

D| 4---------------5
A| 4---------------5
E| 2-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-3

also known as chugging
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As said, galloping is really important. Look at some bands that have good rythm tracks and check out the styles they use.
Quote by pnoy_sk8er21
Is galloping the one where you palm mute a string and make a horse-like gallop?

Yes sirree. If anyone here is unsure of what is meant by galloping, listen to some Iron Maiden and pick out the riffs that go, "dun-dun-dun, dun-dun-dun, dun-dun-dun" quickly.
Quote by dudetheman
So what? I wasted like 5 minutes watching DaddyTwoFoot's avatar.

Metalheads are the worst thing that ever happened to metal.
My advice to you is... listen to a varitey of metal. Listen to some trivium, then listen to some slayer, then iron maiden, then some pantera. Learn some of there songs and blend all of there styles to make your own original sound.
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Necrophagist how could all you n00bs forget the best german metalcore band ever. i think theyre tech metalcore tho or sumfin