See Metallica''s career through photographer Ross Halfin''s lens.

The Ultimate Metallica
By Ross Halfin
Chronicle Books



While he’s also shot Iron Maiden, Def Leppard, the Clash, and the Sex Pistols— all when they were in their prime—Ross Halfin’s most important contributions to rock photography are his iconic shots of Metallica. With the help of his Olympus OM-2 and Nikon D3S, Halfin has captured almost every move Metallica has made onstage and off throughout their legendary career. From the scrappy, denim jacket days to the “I can’t believe they cut their hair” years to the current lineup’s mixing of Tom Waits-inspired attitude and old-school thrash, everything is captured in this 232-page hardcover. The showcased images include spectacular live shots at epic concerts like England’s Monsters of Rock in ’87, as well as intriguing liner notes and magazine covers. But the real mojo lies in the candid photographs that only Halfin could’ve taken: As the unofficial fifth member of Metallica, he took shots of the band at their highest peaks and lowest valleys. The end result is a collection of intimate visuals you’ll not find anywhere else. Halfin’s most compelling images aren’t those from the stage, but when the four horsemen let their guard down behind the scenes.

Other than the love-hate foreword by Lars Ulrich and the complimentary afterword by Kirk Hammett, the book is short on context or explanation from Halfin. But with photos like these, there’s not much more to be said.

On Black Midi's Cavalcade, Geordie Greep’s fretwork is an example of the 6-string as a capable component as much as a solo instrument, never completely stealing the show.

Popular music and mainstream tastes may be more fractured than ever, but the guitar continues to thrive.

As we soft launch into the new year, I’m not waiting for the requisite guitar obituary in the news. It’s not going to happen again anytime soon. Why? Because as far as the mainstream media is concerned, our beloved instrument is not only dead, it's irrelevant to the point of not even being an afterthought. When the New York Times published their most recent albums of the year list, there was barely a guitar-based recording to be found. Still, there is not only hope, but also cause for jubilation.

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Diatonic sequences are powerful tools. Here’s how to use them wisely.

Advanced

Beginner

• Understand how to map out the neck in seven positions.
• Learn to combine legato and picking to create long phrases.
• Develop a smooth attack—even at high speeds.

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Knowing how to function in different keys is crucial to improvising in any context. One path to fretboard mastery is learning how to move through positions across the neck. Even something as simple as a three-note-per-string major scale can offer loads of options when it’s time to step up and rip. I’m going to outline seven technical sequences, each one focusing on a position of a diatonic major scale. This should provide a fun workout for the fingers and hopefully inspire a few licks of your own.
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