Thrash Course with Dave Davidson: Investigating Two Forms of the Diminished Scale

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In this month’s column, I’d like to discuss the diminished scale, which is a very useful scale for writing heavy, twisted-sounding riffs.

In fact, I used it for the primary riffs in the title track from the latest Revocation release, Deathless. There are two forms, or modes, of the diminished scale. One ascends in a repeating pattern of whole steps and half steps (whole, half, whole, half, and so on) and is referred to as the whole-half diminished scale.

The other form starts with a half step and ascends half, whole, half, whole, and so on, and is referred to as the half-whole diminished scale.

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