#1
So I have read everywhere that when you practice sweeps or whatever, that you should practice them and master them on clean, to show that you can play it cleanly and not slur it. But if your a metal player and play with high gain basically all the time, why would you practice sweeps on clean?

For example, I learned the main riff to "The Four Horsemen-Metallica" on clean and sounded good. Then the next day I put it on some heavy distortion and cranked it up, and there was alot of strings ringing and sounded alot worse on distortion than it did clean. So this made me think, why dont I just practice all the **** I want to with gain because, in the end thats how im going to be playing it. And I think its actually harder to play with distortion because you have to mute more and I think it forces you to play cleaner.

So why does everyone say "practice sweeps/advanced techniques on clean?"
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#2
Even if you play metal, think of it like this. If you get it to sound clean and badass on the CLEAN channel, just imagine when you crank up the distortion. What you should do when practicing sweeps, is practice the motions and the sweeping itself on clean, and when you got that down, turn on the distortion and try it again, slow, and this time work on the muting, because yes, it WILL be a different game when the distortion comes on. So basically, learn the shape and all that on clean, and perfect it with distortion.

I only say this because after you put the distortion on, you have to palm mute a little more, change your technique a little, etc.


And by distortion, I mean like insane amounts. But for Metallica style distortion, which isnt even that much, I think youd be alright with just working on it cleanly, there shouldnt be too much of a difference in out of control noise.
#3
Clean lets you perfect the hitting of the notes. The reason your strings were ringing and everything is because you weren't muting the other strings at the same time, which is hard to hear on clean.
I actually practice on distortion first, so I get the gist of what I'm playing and can mute the strings that I want quiet, and then go to clean to make sure I really have it.
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#4
my guitar teacher says to practice most things on clean but he told me to practice sweeps with as much distortion as possible and on the bridge pickup because that way you're forced to not be sloppy and that is the most important part about sweeping.
#5
I always practice sweeps with distortion. I used to practice them with a clean tone, and I spent a considerable amount of time on it, and at the end when I played it distortion, it was clear that my technique was screwed.
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#6
Quote by SRVNumberOne
my guitar teacher says to practice most things on clean but he told me to practice sweeps with as much distortion as possible and on the bridge pickup because that way you're forced to not be sloppy and that is the most important part about sweeping.

That's really bad advice, if you play badly clean it shows up a lot more, sweeping or no. You really have to work for your tone playing clean and that's why it's best to do pure technical practice that way.
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#7
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That's really bad advice, if you play badly clean it shows up a lot more, sweeping or no. You really have to work for your tone playing clean and that's why it's best to do pure technical practice that way.


I normally agree with you, but in this case, I must make an exception. Playing with gain (though not so much that you drown in it) in my experiences reveals many more mistakes in your playing that playing clean. That said, I'm playing through a Cornford, and the modern channel is the most ridiculously responsive amp channel I've ever encountered.
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#8
Quote by insideac
Even if you play metal, think of it like this. If you get it to sound clean and badass on the CLEAN channel, just imagine when you crank up the distortion. What you should do when practicing sweeps, is practice the motions and the sweeping itself on clean, and when you got that down, turn on the distortion and try it again, slow, and this time work on the muting, because yes, it WILL be a different game when the distortion comes on. So basically, learn the shape and all that on clean, and perfect it with distortion.

I only say this because after you put the distortion on, you have to palm mute a little more, change your technique a little, etc.


And by distortion, I mean like insane amounts. But for Metallica style distortion, which isnt even that much, I think youd be alright with just working on it cleanly, there shouldnt be too much of a difference in out of control noise.



WEll I was just using the metallica song as an example of muting and keepin everything quiet compared to clean. But im into COB, Trivium, Pantera, etc.. so thats loads of distortion. but thanks for the advice.
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#9
Practicing with distortion is cheating. Distortion can mask a lot of the very tiny tiny mistakes that you make. If you can play something clean, you can play it distorted. It doesn't always work the other way around. Sweeping is a great example of a technique that you MUST learn to do perfectly clean if you really want to do it well distorted.
#10
I practice it both clean and distorted. A distorted tone brings out any mistakes I might make (typically with muting) so that I can iron them out. I find sweeping on my acoustic really helpful as well.
#11
When you shove a ton of gain on your sound, it becomes compressed, so the dynamic range is sharply cut. This means that even though it sounds like your notes are even, they may not be.
#12
I think playing with high gain and playing clean are two different skills, and both have easier aspects and harder aspects. Clean, you need to play really cleanly to get any sustain and to get even note volumes, and you can easily hear every wrong note in a chord/arpeggio, however open string noise and feedback are not a big problem. Playing distorted, you get a lot of compression which means lots of easy sustain, and wrong notes can be less obvious, but you need to learn to mute strings and minimize scraping noises and feedback.

Deciding to practice only with distortion could be dangerous, because it could hide your mistakes, and only practicing with a clean sound probably won't teach you adequate muting. You really need to do both.
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#13
Practice with both clean and distortion. Practicing on clean assures that you're playing isn't sloppy, but playing with high-gain lets you learn how to work your technique around feedback and string noise.
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