Trivium's guitarists, Matt Heafy and Corey Beaulieu, sat down with MusicRadar recently for an 11-part "master class" in everything they've learned over the course of their career. They talk about balancing rhythm and lead playing, structuring solos, and much more.
Says Matt, "I always say that rhythm playing is equal to, if not more important than lead playing, because lead guitar only comes out for bouts...As a kid, I would isolate parts of songs that I felt were exercises I could use. For example, down-picking—the intro riff for [Metallica’s] 'Blackened' is a good one for that. I would sit there and loop it and break it down, and master the song with a metronome."
Regarding solos, Corey says, "Listen to what you’re playing over—what the chords are, the tonality of it—and think about what kind of sound is going to fit. You’ve got to know the riff well enough to play notes that complement what you’re playing over. Certain solos, like 'Forsake Not The Dream' from In Waves—it’s a simple chord progression, but if you break it down each section of the solo is played in the chord that you’re playing over. It follows the basis of that chord and everything lands on a 3rd or a 5th or a root note."
Trivium are on the road through December 15—find a show near you!
The band's latest album, Vengeance Falls, is available everywhere now—grab a copy from the Roadrunner webstore!