Bent Out of Shape: White Wizzard — 'The Devil's Cut' Guitar Solo Lesson, Part 1

If you've been following my blog posts, you will know I recently recorded guitar solos for the new White Wizzard album, The Devil's Cut.

I recently got together with my band mate and fellow White Wizzard guitarist, Jake Dreyer, to go over our favorite solos from the album and show you how to play them.

We also chose specific parts from each solo to give you in tab form, which we feel would be beneficial for you to learn. Jake's style is highly advanced "neo-classical," and he uses a lot of sweep picked arpeggios. This contrasts my simpler, melodic "bluesy" style and between us we can cover a wide range of styles and influences.

Will: Here's a lick from my solo for "King of the Highway." It uses a simple pentatonic idea where I double pick each note with palm muting to create a staccato style effect. This technique could be used to enhance any scale or arpeggio idea to create a "riff" within a solo. I've heard guitar players such as John Sykes and Jake E. Lee use this technique, and I have subsequently made it a trademark of my own playing. This technique can be used to create dynamics within your solos or used to create interesting motifs within your songs. Try it out!

Jake: This example comes from the seventh measure of my solo from "Strike the Iron," the second track from The Devil’s Cut. My goal was to give this section of the solo a climax as well as a transition into the next chord (A major). This is done by outlining the V chord in A harmonic minor, the E7 chord (E G# B D).

This lick starts with a 32nd-note ascending three-string arpeggio outlining an E major chord in root position followed by a descending and ascending E major arpeggio in the same position, this time going down to the fifth string. Beat two has the same arpeggio, slid up one position to first inversion, meaning the arpeggio now starts on the third of the chord (G#). This is descended and ascended with an added tap to the fifth (B).

Measure eight has us continue with the same notes, but during this measure we introduce an added note, F, which is going to now give off the tonality of an E7(b9). You could think of this as basically outlining a secondary leading tone chord in A harmonic minor. The first shape highlights a descending and ascending three-note-per-string G# whole diminished chord, which is string-skipped from the first string to the third string, followed by the same pattern, only moved up a minor 3rd.

Beat eight contains a multi-finger-tapping technique going from the notes D to E; you could analyze the E as being a neighboring tone to the G# diminished chord or as the root in the dominant b9 chord. I do this by using my second and third finger on my right hand. Though if you had a device that kept your pick on your thumb (i.e. the Chris Broderick pick clip), it could be done by using the first and second or any combination you feel is more comfortable. At any rate, that is the lick that takes up measure 7 and 8 of "Strike the Iron."

Now turn on that metronome and start annoying your girlfriend/boyfriend/parents/siblings/household pets with this lick. At least that is what I hope for!

Thanks for watching our solo lesson. Hopefully you learned something you can use in your own playing. We will have a second lesson coming soon. The Devils Cut is out in the US on Century Media Records and in Europe on Earache Records. Cheers!

Will Wallner is a guitarist from England who now lives in Los Angeles. He recently signed a solo deal with Polish record label Metal Mind Productions for the release of his debut album, which features influential musicians from hard rock and heavy metal. He also is the lead guitarist for White Wizzard (Earache Records) and toured Japan, the US and Canada in 2012. Follow Will on Facebook and Twitter.

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