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Metal Techniques – Octave Riffing

Practice Tips

  • Octave shapes are a great way of learning all the note names of the fretboard. Once you know the shapes for each set of strings, you can then start playing scale fragments on one string, and then using your knowledge of octaves to play the same fragment an octave higher. Eventually, you'll be able to see 3 string scale patterns in the next octave.
  • Muting is an integral part of playing octaves, so remember to listen out for notes that should not be sounding out. I recommend playing all six strings at the same time to check your muting skills. I also recommend doing this with a distorted guitar tone. If your muting technique is up to scratch, all you'll hear are the 2 notes of the octave.