Machine Gun Riffing

by Ben Higgins

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  • Difficulty: 5
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  • Hello and welcome to my latest lesson!

    I wanted to focus on achieving a tight, focused rhythm attack which makes your guitar riffs sound like machine gun fire because of the short, fast bursts.

    Megadeth are a great band to study when it comes to all areas of rhythm playing but this is something that features a lot in their music.
    Try songs like 'Sudden Death'.

    Technically, there's nothing much going on with the left hand but the right hand has some hard work in this lesson. I recommend going through and memorising the exact pick strokes before trying to play anything with a backing track or metronome. Forgetting the picking patterns and adding extra notes or missing notes out is a common result when you don't remember the patterns.

    Also, try to reduce the amount of movement in your picking hand as much as you can. As you become more accustomed to the lesson you should be able to relax a bit more and allow this to happen.

    You might want to reduce the amount of distortion you use and make sure you employ the left hand to mute the strings when they're not being fretted.
    Tightness is the name of the game here.


    Tempo: 90bpm

    Gear: Marshall JVM, OD2, Orange channel

    Key: A minor
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