Sick Riffs: Wade MacNeil teaches you the two-handed tapping hook of Alexisonfire's 44 Caliber Love Letter

Sick Riffs #117: Canada's Alexisonfire are titans in the world of post-hardcore, so we're jazzed to have guitarist and founding member Wade MacNeil join us in today's episode to teach you how to play the main riff of 44 Caliber Love Letter, the opener of the band's self-titled debut.

This one's tuned a half-step down, and incorporates two-handed tapping, providing you with an opportunity to hone your skill in ambidexterity.

MacNeil plays a '53 Gibson Les Paul Junior electric guitar through a '70s Fender Super Reverb amp and two Electro-Harmonix pedals: a Reissue Big Muff fuzz and Small Stone phaser.

"Like everybody else right now, I am stuck indoors," he says. "And maybe not like everybody else, I am doing a lot of the same stuff. Playing guitar all day. Watching films. Reading. Ordering Chinese food. 

"So, not a lot has changed for a lot of musicians out there. Just like everybody else, I miss my friends I miss going to shows, I miss a lot of things. But playing guitar every day is definitely getting me through it."

Support Alexisonfire

Sick Riffs is a Guitar World video series designed to help guitarists affected by the coronavirus. Self-isolating players around the world have each filmed a lesson where they teach you one of their own guitar riffs, up close and personal. If you dig the lesson, we encourage you to buy music and merch from the artist or stream their music.

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Sam Roche

Sam was Staff Writer at from 2019 to 2023, and also created content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.