How To Play Thrash Metal Guitar – The Basics

Published: 23rd April 2010
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Thrash metal is a sub-genre of heavy metal music. It developed in the early 1980's and was a groundbreaking phenomenon in the world of metal music. Thrash is played at a furiously fast pace with a staccato, percussive guitar sound and has a high tempo with aggressive notes that give an impression of anger to the uninitiated. Thrash metal was created by American bands as a fusion of British heavy metal with the speed of hardcore punk. Metallica, Slayer and Megadeth are a few bands that made thrash metal immensely popular. Outlined below is a brief description of how to play thrash metal guitar.

Palm muting is a very useful technique that is essential to play metal in the guitar. It involves dampening the strings with the edge of your hand which when coupled with high gain or distortion from the amp produces a rhythmic thump on striking the strings. The further you mute the strings towards the neck of the guitar, the sharper sounds you get. Practicing some exercises daily can help immensely to improve your stance and position.

Once you are confident with palm muting, you can progress to the various other techniques available. Alternate picking or tremolo picking is one such technique that can improve the percussion and increase the tempo. With alternate picking, it is possible to pick faster and with more rhythmic accuracy. This requires a strong discipline with the picking rhythm.

Pick grouping is the most important element of creativity while learning how to play thrash metal guitar. This requires tremendous practice and discipline. If you are a beginner it is always better to start with easier metal such as Black Sabbath. The web is an excellent source of information and there are a number of sites that are very helpful for beginners. These sites also have videos and PDF files that can be downloaded.

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