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Future Rock: 10 Essential Slides, Scrapes, and Noises


Ex. 6—The Revving Scrape ’n’ Slide
This is my personal favorite: a super-effective combination of Examples 1, 2, and 4. Start by revving up, then scrape down and slide down. The revving up serves as a one beat pickup to the full measure of scraping and sliding.

Click here for Ex. 6

Ex. 7—The Elephant
Another favorite of mine, this is a variation of the Revving that loosely imitates the sound of your preferred pachyderm. Start revving up on beat 2, use beats 3 and 4 to land on a high note, and finally bend the low string as far as you can. A lively sound indeed.

Click here for Ex. 7

Ex. 8—The Strangler
Similar to the Elephant, but here you stay on the note you land on after revving up, and then shake it with an exaggerated vibrato.

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Ex. 9—The Gojira
This next one is inspired by the extreme metal band Gojira, who often use this specific sound (and variations of it) as a compositional tool in their riff writing. The sound is less transparent and more pronounced, and might not fit anywhere as well as the other variations we’ve seen so far.

To execute, place your fretting hand past the last fret and push the high strings down (as if you were fretting them), then use a slow sweeping upstroke all the way to the lowest string. When you hit that low string, your fretting hand should actually be on the neck as you proceed to a one-string downward slide. The upstroke serves as a grace note to the quick power slide. Otherworldly!

Click here for Ex. 9

Ex. 10—The Freakout
Finally, this last example is an extreme noisemaker. Place your fretting hand high on the neck on the high strings (as many as you can manage, as long as the top strings are covered). Then start tremolo picking across several strings while sliding down. This one may also cut through more than the others, so use carefully.

Click here for Ex. 10

Have fun exploring the noisy combinations of these examples and maybe come up with some of your own variations. In addition to scales, note choices, and so on, there is often an art to the ugliness and noisy qualities of an unconventional technique.

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