Muting really necessary when playing metal riff?

Discussion in 'Technique [BG]' started by ToshitomoriOh, Jan 26, 2013.


  1. ToshitomoriOh

    ToshitomoriOh

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2012
    Messages:
    26
    I wonder how many of you are able to mute unwanted strings when playing a fast metal riff (at probably 180bpm ish).

    For example, there's a bass solo part in Metallica's holier than thou, and I believe it starts with an open E and then an open A. So...ideally, the other three strings should be muted somehow when playing either the open E or the open A.

    In fact, I tend to let the middle finger of my fretting hand mute the undesired strings (although the E string is naturally muted with my plucking finger playing the open A). And, I just find it hard to keep the rhythm, and have noticed that the middle finger used for muting may make noise at times....noise that would not occur if not trying to mute the unwanted strings at all in the first place.

    My question is, is muting really necessary when playing a fast phrase like that? Or I just don't need to pay too much attention on those unwanted strings UNLESS they're vibrating noticeably?
     
  2. Clef_de_fa

    Clef_de_fa

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2011
    Messages:
    2,743
    Location:
    Canada
    The obvious answer is : Yes
     
  3. ELITE55

    ELITE55

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2011
    Messages:
    32
    What kind of noise does your finger make when muting the strings? If you just practice laying your hands on the unplayed strings at a slower tempo then it will eventually become natural. I feel as though learning how to mute is one of the most important techniques to learn because the more advanced you get the more control you will need to have on the other unplayed strings. Having other strings vibrate can really make it a unpleasant listening experience. You should also practice muting the E and A if you are playing the D and G. I use my plucking hand for that
     
  4. Tupac

    Tupac

    Joined:
    May 5, 2011
    Messages:
    2,312
  5. Register to disable this ad
  6. Liv3rman

    Liv3rman

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Messages:
    89
    No. They won't ring loud enough to affect your sound when hammering away on E and A. Just make sure you mute whichever string out of E and A you aren't playing. I play that riff without muting D and G with no problems.
     
  7. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2010
    Messages:
    5,617
    Location:
    Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
    Yes, yes it is.

    I had to steal this technique from somebody I just don't know who, but I splay out my pinky on my plucking hand so it rests near the bridge. This makes a perfect mute without muting too much, maybe it works for you.
     
  8. AaronMB

    AaronMB

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2012
    Messages:
    251
    Location:
    California's Central Valley
    If you're hearing this in a band mix, yes.

    Those little nuances sure stand out while in the bedroom.
     
  9. ToshitomoriOh

    ToshitomoriOh

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2012
    Messages:
    26
    Thanks to you all. Practice makes perfect.
     

Share This Page