Time for some serious metal riffing with a lesson teaching "Raining Blood" by thrash metal legends Slayer.
Make sure you tune your guitar down one-half step in order to follow along with these lessons and the original recording. That will be starting from the 6th string Eb Ab Db Gb Bb Eb.
In the first Raining Blood guitar lesson we are actually going to take a look at the first two guitar riffs in "Raining Blood" because I thought they sounded so cool going from one to the other that skipping either of them wouldn't be right.
The first riff opens the track with one of those dissonant melodies that Slayer are masters at writing. This opening riff is rather simple to play and shouldn't give much of a challenge to most players.
The second riff is where the speed is drastically kicked up a notch or two with a fast gallop rhythm. Pay close attention to how I pick this riff in the video lesson. Picking it in the way I will demonstrate in this Raining Blood guitar lesson will help you make that gallop rhythm nice and consistent.
After the gallop rhythm we end the riff with a quick little melodic sequence. Be sure to keep those notes slightly palm muted (especially on the 6th string) in order to help those notes kind of pop-out better.
In the second video lesson we will take an in-depth look at the rest of the song. These riffs can be very challenging requiring extremely fast picking and chord shifts. There are also some single note riffs that not only rock, but make for excellent technique exercises as well.
The keys to all of this type of heavy riffing is to make it as tight and precise as possible. That means there is a lot of palm muting to help not only thicken up the sound, but also to help tighten it up as well. Have fun with this great thrash metal workout!
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