Slayer & Exodus Inspired Thrash Riffs

by Zsolt Galambos

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  • Hi GMC-ers,
    And welcome to another riffs/rhythm lesson. This time we will focus on the Bay Area Thrash riffing, in the style of Slayer and Exodus.
    The San Francisco Bay Area, California is considered as the starting location of the Thrash scene. It all began in the mid 80's, when bands like Exodus, Metallica, Athrax and Slayer wanted to create a heavyer and faster style of music in the metal genre. Although rooted in the New Wave of Brithish Heavy Metal style, these bands developed their own distinct sound. The most influential records are Metallica's "Kill 'em All", Exodus's "Bonded by Blood" and Slayer's "Reign in Blood".
    This lesson tries to display the very sound and style of the Thrash scene. When playing the rhythm parts, try to pick downwards only.
    The song consist of the main riff, the verse, the bridge and the chorus. For the whole song, play the whole lesson twice, and if you feel, you can add a solo section to it.
    Although this lesson is played in D tuning ( D, G, C, F, A, D ), the early Thrash records were tuned to E and E-flat.
    Happy practicing & headbanging :)
    -Zsolt
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