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Metal Guitar Lessons - Essential Techniques

The heavy metal guitar lessons below will quickly teach you the skills and techniques that make heavy metal fast, brutal and even... melodic. No spikey guitar necessary.

If you're into thrash metal, death metal, or any other form of heavy metal and want to learn the essential guitar techniques used in all the metal sub-genres, this is the place.

Work your way through the lessons below in the order they're presented.

By the time you get to the bottom you'll have a solid foundation of skills to thrash and grind till your heart's content.

Step by Step Metal Guitar Lessons Contents

small chevron Power Chords  Power chords are... not chords! They are dyads (two notes played together) used religiously in rock and heavy metal. They work well under high gain/distortion, so crank up your amp's settings and learn how to improve your riff co-ordination and speed with these power chord exercises. Also in this series...
small chevron Metal Guitar Chords  Modify and add to those basic root-5th powerchords to create more intricate harmonies in your metal. Metal chords are more cut down than standard chords for greater definition under high gain/distortion.

small chevron Metal Songwriting  How to write chord progressions for heavy metal, taking inspiration from some of the great metal riffs and some theory behind chord construction.

small chevron Metal Strumming  Learn the basics of strumming in heavy metal, with drum tracks to practice your own riffs. We start with basic down strumming patterns before moving on to more complex alternate strumming in part 2. An essential primer in metal rhythm guitar. Also in this series...
small chevron Palm Mute Guitar  Palm muting is a technique used in all forms of heavy metal, providing a more percussive edge to distorted/high gain guitar. Use this lesson series for the basics, moving onto some more advanced tips and techniques in the 2nd and 3rd parts. Also in this series...
small chevron Basic hammer-on / pull-off  This video lesson shows you how to incorporate hammer-ons and pull-offs into a simple metal riff.

small chevron Fast Guitar Picking  This lesson covers tremolo picking - an alternate picking technique used most commonly in thrash metal and shredding styles. Great speed building excercises for your picking hand.

small chevron Metal Guitar Scales  A bit of focus on lead guitar and the scales commonly used in heavy metal to support its harsh, aggressive style. We look at the most popular scales and some of the more "experimental" scales used in metal.

small chevron Death Metal Guitar  The basics of playing death metal guitar. Brings together a lot of the core metal techniques in the context of the death metal style. Also in this series... small chevron Thrash Metal Guitar  This lesson gives you some technical picking exercises to help you create those satisfying, chugging riffs heard in thrash. Plus, we look at general tremolo picking and some other essential thrash metal skills.

small chevron Metal Rhythm Guitar  This lesson focuses on working with the percussion, looking at rhythmic structure. Includes drum tracks to try out your own riffs. We also get introduced to the "groove" element of heavy metal.

Metal Guitar Warmup Exercises

Emil Werstler shows us some great down picking, speed building and warmup exercises using palm muting. Cheesy intro thrown in for good measure.

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Want Video Metal Lessons?

Learn how Jamplay can help you master all the essential heavy metal techniques, right through to an advanced level, by using multiple camera angles and the very best teachers/players of the style.

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