Psycho Guitar Lesson – Muse

In this Psycho guitar lesson video I will show you note-for-note how to play this hard rocking modern rock hit by the great English rock band Muse.

This song contains many cool riffs and fills but isn't very difficult to play so I think it would be a great one to learn for just about any Muse fan.

First off, you will need to tune your guitar to dropped "D" tuning so that low to high your guitar will be tuned to DADGBE. After that you will be able to play along with this lesson and the original recording just fine.

The song starts with what can be referred to as the main riff of the song. It is a pretty simple single string riff happening entirely on the low D string. Since the left hand notes are pretty simple it will give you a good opportunity to lock into the groove of the riff which is probably the most important thing to concentrate on.

You will also want to make sure you keep the slow bend well timed and in tune. After the full band enters, guitarist/singer Matthew Bellamy continues to play this main riff albeit with a little fill consistently thrown in.

This all leads into the chorus riff which is also performed mostly on the low D string. This chorus riff does require a bit of a stretch at one point so make sure you have your thumb in the proper position behind the neck in order to let your fingers reach those notes easily.

The verse of the song brings everything down to a much lower dynamic level and contains a simple rhythm throughout with a heavily muted feel to it. However, there are many fills thrown into this riff and it moves around the fretboard quite a lot. It may seem like these fills are very random but they actually repeat exactly the same way every time so take the time to memorize them.

The guitar solo section of the song contains a bunch of tremolo picked octaves that ascend up the fretboard. Pay close attention in the video lesson as to how I hold my picking hand wrist. If you properly position your wrist you can perform those rapid down/up strums much easier and make them very consistent with minimal effort. Try to keep everything as loose as possible.

I also decided to add a little bit to this solo section. On the original recording there is additional harmony added to the octaves by a string section or keyboard. What I have done in the lesson is show you how to add that harmony to the octaves you are already strumming to make everything sound a lot like the recording without having to have your own personal orchestra. 🙂

Keep in mind though that Matthew Bellamy only performs the standard octaves when he performs the song.

So have fun with this great modern rock song "Psycho" from one of the most inventive bands out there, Muse.


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Psycho Guitar Lesson - Muse


  1. Jacob Gillard on May 5, 2015 at 4:44 pm

    Thanks for the lesson
    I’m just wandering what settings you have on your amp because I have a Marshall MG15CFR and I can’t get the same sound as you have in the video. If you are using a pedal could you please tell me what pedal you are using?

    • Carl Brown on May 6, 2015 at 9:55 am

      Hey Jacob, I actually use an AXE-FX II by Fractal Audio for all of my lessons. I can’t really remember what preset I used though. I just usually sit down for a couple of months and try to find something that will work for a specific song then just roll with it. 🙂

      • Jacob Gillard on May 6, 2015 at 11:09 am

        Ok thanks for helping. ?

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