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Guitar World Member For: 4 years 27 weeks
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Metal For Life: Getting Your Chops Back in Shape

Over the years, I’ve noticed that guitar playing is like a winter sport. During the summer, guitarists, like everyone else, divide their time between recreation, work and practice, but when the cold months arrive, they start playing guitar again in earnest. Unfortunately, after a long break, we often find that our skills aren’t quite where they need to be.

Metal For Life: Using Two-Note Power Chords Built From Fourths to Create Heavy Riffs

Most power chord forms in rock and metal and comprised of either two or three notes, usually with the root note placed as the lowest note in the chord, joined with a note a fifth higher to create the two-note form, or with an additional root note on top to create a three-note-form. Equally effective are power chord forms built from fourths.

Metal For Life: How to Combine Two Rhythm Parts to Create a Huge-Sounding Track

This month I'd like to talk about the art of combining different, complementary rhythm guitar parts to create powerful metal rhythm tracks. The sound of two guitars is the bedrock of heavy metal music.

Metal Mike: Simple Truths Regarding Focus for Musicians

In photography, the term depth of field is often used to describe what object retains the focus and what is blurred out. In a long depth of field, everything is sharp and ready for examination while in short dept of field you will see the sharpness emphasizing the main subject, while the remainder of the picture is blurred out.

Metal Mike: Break Your Rhythm and Build Confidence in Taking the Lead

While doing my metal guitar workshops one of the topics that I hear a lot about is the art of tackling the ability to play lead guitar. I often hear guitarists tell me that they want to know how they can begin to play a bit more lead in their band. They are interested in sharpening their skills, but they seem afraid and un-sure of how to dive in. Often they feel that there is an invisible wall stopping them. They just don’t know.

Metal For Life: Building Crushing Riffs From Complex Single-Note Patterns

As much as I love guitar parts built from fast and hyper-syncopated power-chord figures, some of the heaviest riffs I’ve ever heard are built from single-note patterns alone. Legendary metal bands such as Metallica and Megadeth, as well as relatively newer groups like Children of Bodom, At the Gates and In Flames, have used crushing single-note riffs as the centerpieces of their most powerful songs. In this month’s column, I’d like to focus on how to construct interesting, heavy and deceptively complex single-note riffs.

Metal For Life: Crafting a Rhythmically and Harmonically Challenging Single-Note Riff

In this month's "Metal For Life," Metal Mike dissects the challenge of crafting a rhythmically and harmonically challenging, heavy single-note riff.

Metal For Life: Using a Metal Approach with Classical-Style Themes

This month's "Metal For Life" shows you how to utilize a metal approach when playing classical-style themes. Classical music -- being used as an umbrella term to cover the Classical, Romantic and Baroque periods -- has been a major influence on heavy metal, particularly after the arrival of the "neoclassical shred" movement in the '80s.

Metal For Life: A Look at Whammy-Bar Acrobatics

In this month's "Metal For Life," Metal Mike Chlasciak takes a look at one of the all-time great inventions for the electric guitar: the whammy bar!

Metal For Life: Utilizing Consecutive Downstrokes for Maximum Heaviness

In this month's "Metal For Life," Metal Mike Chlasciak talks about how you can utilize consecutive downstrokes to create the heaviest metal riffs.