Metalcore - The Basics. Part 3

author: TDG Tabs date: 10/12/2009 category: guitar styles
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Introduction Long time no see fellow Metalcorians (made up word that makes me sound a little logical). I'm back with yet another Metalcore lesson. Now, hoping that you have read my other two articles on Metalcore and taking some time to practice (the reason why I haven't made any new lessons in a while ?), I will assume that you already know what relative tuning(s) to use, how to Palm-mute, Alternate pick, Add slides into riffs, and incorporate Hammer-ons and Pull-offs. Awesome! You have now set up a basic building structure to improve from. In this lesson I will go more in depth on what it takes to be a decent Metalcore guitarist. Amp Settings The usual amp setting for Metalcore are found in this wonderful lesson. All credit for the Settings and lesson above goes to xASxIxLAYx Getting started Warming up is ideal for any guitarists. Not only does it get your fingers re-familiarized with the fret board after being away from it, but it gets the blood pumping in your fingers and hands so you can play with ease. Below is my warming up schedule that I do almost every day before playing. *WARNING. All of these riffs are played in Drop C tuning (C,G,C,F,A,D). It is best advised to play them in Drop C, but you can also play them in Drop D (D,A,D,G,B,E).
*Conduct all these Excercises in the clean channel. NO DISTORTION!*

Excercise 1

Excercise 2

Excercise 3 (Hammer-ons)
|-------------------------------------------------------| etc to 10th fret,
|-------1h3h4--------2h4h5--------3h5h6--------4h6h7----|    then repeat

Excercise 4

Excercise 5 (Try to make the reach, it'll pay off)
Good, now that you have warmed your little fingers up, we can begin. Tremolo Picking My idea of Tremolo picking is basically The Alternate picking we learned in Part 2, but faster. What you want to do is Alternate pick, but make sure that your hand spasms a little more. In terms of "proper Tremolo Picking technique," I cant really say much about that other than to practice, and DON'T ANCHOR. Anchoring is bad, and will cause some serious wrist damage. It happened to my uncle and trust me, its not a pretty sight seeing a messed up wrist. For these excercises, if you have a metranome then stay in 4/4 times until you are VERY SURE that you will be able to move on.
Excercise 6 (Tremolo Picking)

Excercise 7 (Tremolo Picking)

Excercise 8 (Tremolo Picking)
Gallop Picking (A.K.A the horse gallop) Gallop picking is basically Alternate picking, but Gallop picking is used in short bursts rather than a really long continuos riff. How to conduct a Gallop is basically a Down, Up, Down motion of your pick. What you need to do is apply your Alternate picking skills and your Palm-muting skills into one. This is an example from Killswitch Engage's "Reject Yourself"
Excercise 9 (Gallop Picking, Remember to keep your wrist loose)
pm . ...         . ...        . ...         .  . . .
That riff is VERY good to learn because not only will it help you with galloping, but it will also help you with your finger strength, speed, and palm-muting skills. Since we are already on the subject, I want to bring back the Killswitch Engage "My Curse" riff from the first lesson. Some of you probably just skimmed past this, you made a mistake. This riff is simple, but it is a total palm-mute workout for your hands. Take my word, if you practice this riff almost 3-4 times a day, you will see improvement in your right hand stamina. I can palm-mute and nearly play my guitar about x3 longer than I could have when I posted Metalcore - The Basics. Part 1. Please LEARN this riff and always play it. USE ALL DOWN STROKES IN ORDER TO INCREASE YOUR STAMINA.
Excercise 10 Killswitch Engage - "My Curse"
pm   . .   . .    . .   . .     . .              

pm   . .   . .    . .   . .     . .
You may not believe it, but it seriously works. Who knew jammin' to Killswitch Engage would pay off haha. The Almighty Pinch Harmonic So young grasshopper, you want to learn the ways of the Pinch harmonic? Well young one, this technique I shall teach you will eventually surpass me. (All kidding aside though,) To Preform a Pinch harmonic hold your pick with your thumb sticking out slightly from the side of your pick. Then pick the string so the pick hits it, and your thumb then hits it immediately afterwards. Not too hard right? wrong. This technique cannot be just "Here ya go, if you try about 2 times you will get the hang of things," no. This technique is usually found by Trial and Error. You know when you get the P.H (Pinch Harmonic) sound when you hear a strong squeal that your guitar is making. To be honest, I can't just teach this to you, you need to find the key and open the pathway yourself. All I can do is try to get you there. *Remember, when you et the P.H to sound out, be sure to bend your string for a jaw dropping sound that will make Paul Gilbert cry. (no offense to any Paul fans, I'm a fan myself hehe) Here are some examples with Pinch Harmonics.
Excercise 11 (P.H)
* - Pinch Harmonic

Excercise 12 (P.H)
Pm  . . . . . .                . . . . . .
I haven't gotten this technique down yet, but with enough time and effort you will be on your way. Ground Breaking Dissonant Chords I can think of a million artists who use dissonant chords, but I really dont have time trying to list all of them haha. But dissonant chords are very moody sounding and can add depth and aggressiveness to any song. Although I barely know the theory behind them, these are some of the chords. Notice how most of them have the same Shape.
Excercise 13 (Dissonant Chords)

*Heres a little chord excercise I have just made*
Excercise 14
Pm  .  .                     .  .        . ... <== Gallop Picked.
Whew! What a workout wouldn't you say? Soloing Ready to bust out into mouth watering, skin ripping, eye ball licking shredding and wicked sweet arpeggios? guess again. Before you can do any of that stuff, you need to know some scales dude. Here are some easy scales to start practicing and maybe even memorizing.
Excercise 15
G Major Scale
|---------------2-4-5---------------------| Standard Tuning

Excercise 16
G Pentatonic Major
|-------------2-5-------------------------| Standard Tuning

*Here's a cool solo from Killswitch Engage's "Never Again"



How to use these scales? One word, Imagination. If you ask me: "How do I solo faster?" or "How do I make solos?" I will say the same thing to you. Imagination. Ransack this site and search all the scale warm-ups and excercises they have, learn and breathe scales. That and Practice will be your goal to soloing. Conclusion Whew am I tired. It took me nearly a whole day to make this lesson. I'm very sorry if you have been waiting for this to come out sooner, just school has really been a drag and I actually do have a real life, lol. Thanks for reading this article, I hope it helped someone out there. Sorry if it didnt answer some of your questions. You can PM me if you have any further questions of suggestions about Metalcore of just plain guitar. But keep in mind that I'm no genius nor have I went to music college, I'm just a teen like the majority of you. Thanks for reading my lesson and I hope that this helps you on your way to metalcore music! Most people might think that metalcore is really stupid and the riffs sound the same, but with a little creativity you can make a peice of art. -TDG Tabs
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