80's Rock Rhythm

by Darius Wave

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  • Welcome to the 80's Rock Rhythm lesson!

    Lesson focused on a rhythm (riffs) playing in the style of 80's rock bands. Cool thing about that particular era is how rhythm playing was interspered with some solo-like licks. Main influence in my case, was band called Extreme. I loved how Nuno combined wide palette of technical tricks in between regular, groovey rhythm playing. This lesson was not supposed to sound exactly like one of Extreme's songs. The purpose here is to give an example of using harmonics, tapping, 6th harmonies and palm muting, the way Nuno did back then (mostly in the first three Extreme albums)

    Make sure to use bridge pickup position. It's recommended to have humbucker pickup - it handles more distortion with less noise and it's much more tight/focused in the midrange.

    Proper amount of gain (only as much as necessary) will be crucial to keep things clear and tight. Too much gain will destroy good separation between notes, and will make the whole riffing more blurry. Too much gain can cause less effort from player himself, and will affect the overall profit, that could have been taken from the lesson.

    Notice that in main video guitar has been recorded twice and panned one 100% left and the other 100% right(double tracking). This trick helps to squeeze more power out of backing guitar tone. These days it's a kind of must for anything from rock to metal. Otherwise single guitar track may not be able to transfer the amount of energy you would usually feel while playing your part live, on the amp. Double tracking is also a great way to verify how well you can execute the licks. Precisely played part with double tracking should make you able to recognize each note while both guitars play. Any timing or articulation issue will immediately come out. It's a great way for a self-test.

    Gear used (in order of connection chain placement):

    1.SX SST57 guitar with Seymour Duncan JB Junior bridge pickup
    2. Presonus Inspire 1394 firewire audio interface (input gain 40%)
    3. Poulin Legion plug-in:
    - Channel - green
    - Mode - Lead
    - All knobs (eq, drive, input etc.) - 50%
    4. Kefir impulse loader (mix 100%)
    5. Impulse - Catharsis 2off_preshigh
    6. Cubase 7.5 equalizer:
    - 4.46 kHz - 4,9 dB Q=9.3
    - 11.47 kHz - 3.5 dB Q=2.5 Low Pass II mode

    Tuning - Standard (E B G D A E)

    Backing track progression:


    Am | D | C D | D Em | Am | D | C D | D Em |
    Am | D | C D | D Em | Am | D | C D | D Em |
    Am | Am | Am | Am C D | Am | Am | Am | D |
    Am | Am | Am | Am C D | Am | Am | Am | D |
    Am | Am | D | D | Am | Am | D | D |
    Am | Am | D | D | Am | Am | D | D | Am ||

    Tempo: Main song tempo is 200 bpm. There are also backing tracks available at 70, 100, 125, 150, 175 and 200 bpm.

    Time signature: 4/4

    Scales used in this lesson:

    A dorian mode

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