How To Play Heavy Metal Rhythm Guitar

Posted by Mike Schumacher

A lot of people get stuck when it comes down to learning how to play heavy metal guitar. They struggle with figuring out which strings go where, or what position their fretboard is in. Some can’t seem to make any music at all!

That’s why we are going to take a closer look here and now. We will break down some fundamentals of playing rhythm guitar by string section. Then, we will move onto some easy songs that anyone can pick up quickly.

Once you have learned how to play these songs effectively, you can start practicing your own riffs and licks.

Practice constantly

how to play heavy metal rhythm guitar

Even if you are already able to play some chords, there’s more to music than just that! Once you have learned how to play some simple riffs or beats, it is time to move onto heavier songs with longer compositions.

Practice makes perfect, so keep practicing by investing in your practice space and equipment as well as having regular sessions. When learning any new skill, there will be times when you feel like giving up but instead of quitting, try changing something about the technique to make it more efficient.

For example, if you are struggling to get the timing of a guitar riff correctly, then trying jumping over one note may fix this. The way you use syncronization and tritone substitution can also help you get the rhythm right.

Listen to heavy metal music

how to play heavy metal rhythm guitar

If you want to play heavy metal rhythm guitar, then you have to listen to a lot of music! There are many ways to learn how to play heavy metal riffs by listening to heavy metal songs and practicing what patterns and chords they use in them.

Music theory is very helpful when it comes to learning how to play heavy metal rhythms. For example, knowing which notes make up a chord and what order those notes should be in is important.

There are also some special notes called tritone (or devil) notes that can create interesting harmonic structures when used correctly.

Watch heavy metal videos

how to play heavy metal rhythm guitar

A lot of people get stuck on learning how to play rhythm guitar because they do not know what style of music to learn. When you are starting out, it is best to listen to lots of different types of songs to get a feel for the styles.

Music theory is very important when playing rhythm guitar. For example, knowing which notes make up a chord or where the bass line falls in a song can help you write your own chords and bass lines.

For more advanced players, adding tritone substitution into a bar-balloon structure will create some new sounds and patterns.

Use a metronome

A very powerful tool for developing your rhythm guitar skills is a metronome. A metronome works by timing how long it takes you to do something- in this case, play an interval or a note pattern.

A good beginner’s start with a one minute timer is using a half open fifth chord as a starting point and playing whatever notes come next within that time limit. Once you get those down, increase the time slightly and add more chords or different patterns.

Learn the drum kit

how to play heavy metal rhythm guitar

The next step is to learn your instrument’s most important part, the drums! While some people may already have a basic understanding of how to play their bass or guitar, very few know how to truly take advantage of the drum set by learning its parts thoroughly.

The snare, ride, crash, kick, and tom drums can all add flavor and depth to any song you want to experiment with. There are many resources available online and in books that teach you about different types of drums and how to play them.

Some musicians learn only one type of drum, so it is good to find out what style you like before expanding your repertoire. For example, if you love listening to songs with lots of fast riffs, then maybe try playing just the hi-hats and lusciously slow kicks of the pedal steel drum!

And for those who enjoy adding effects such as reverb and echo to music, investing in a little bag full of sprays and brushes will help you get started.

Learn to sing

how to play heavy metal rhythm guitar

While not every song needs lyrics, singing is an integral part of playing heavy metal guitar. You will need to be able as well as can do with your own voice when you are performing these songs.

Many musicians in this genre cannot seem to get through a set list without including at least one sung instrumental or “lazer” bit (where the notes just go crazy). These tunes usually feature lots of cool effects that use your voice as an instrument!

Singing gives you another way to express yourself musically. It also helps to hone your ear-training since you have to know what note each word is most often pronounced as.

And don’t worry if it sounds like someone else’s voice all the time- even famous singers sound different! The average person has a range of about three octaves which makes it easy to learn how to play something within that space.

Start by practicing scales, then breathing exercises, and finally pronouncing some simple syllables. When you feel ready, try recording yourself and listening for mistakes.

Connect with other musicians

how to play heavy metal rhythm guitar

As mentioned before, heavy metal is all about connecting with others! If you are ever feeling motivated to learn how to play rhythm guitar, there are many resources available for you to explore. You can take beginner lessons or advance more advanced concepts by watching YouTube videos or listening to music that learning materials refer to.

There are also plenty of online communities where aspiring musician’s share their progress and get inspired by each other. Some of these sites have open calls for new members which could be an easy way to start exploring the music world.

Once you find the type of people that inspire you and give you motivation, connect with them! Take some time to read blogs, watch band documentaries, listen to songs they recommend – anything that will pique your interest and help you develop your relationship with this artist.

This goes both for bands you already like and ones you want to learn more about! It’s not only an excellent source of inspiration but it also gives you someone to look up to who may offer helpful tips and guidance.

Read music closely

how to play heavy metal rhythm guitar

The second key thing about playing heavy metal rhythm guitar is that you have to read your notes very, very quickly! This may seem difficult at first, but with practice, it becomes easier and more intuitive.
As I mentioned before, chords in heavy metal are not fully formed until they’re broken down into their individual notes. These individual notes must then be picked up and placed in the right sequence for the song.

So how do you know which note goes where? By reading the music! You will need to learn how to recognize what chord each note is part of, as well as when a new note should be added or subtracted (e.g., passing tones).

By learning how to identify these notes rapidly, you’ll be able to play along more easily. Technology can really help here, too; most good drum machines and software has easy ways to transpose songs so you don’t have to start from scratch.

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