Modern metal guitar with Pin from SikTh

SikTh guitarist Pin takes you through some monster licks

Image 1 of 5 Modern metal guitar with Pin from SikTh
SikTh have received worldwide acclaim for their unique modern style
Image 2 of 5 Modern metal guitar with Pin from SikTh
Example 1: This first riff uses fast downstrokes to get the required chunk and is phrased in groups of five across the bar in 5\4. Divided by a bar of 2/4, the riff then turns around and the pattern is reversed. Palm muting the low notes will help bring out the separation and give a tight, defined sound. It's a good idea to tap your foot along with the time signature change before you learn the riff, then try to memorise the pattern slowly before increasing speed.
Image 3 of 5 Modern metal guitar with Pin from SikTh
Example 2: Here the time signatures are moving from 3/4 through 7/4 to 5/4 and the notes are phrased over the beat in groupings of 3, 7 and 5. It is vital that the fretting hand mutes as it hammers down by lying flat across the strings and with the first finger tip muting the string above. Take care that you don't brush open strings with your picking hand whilst pulling off too.
Image 4 of 5 Modern metal guitar with Pin from SikTh
Example 3: A great example of a single line legato riff that utilises open strings. Again, with this technique, it is vital to get used to the tip of the first finger acting as a mute for the string above the one being played, and all strings underneath by lying flat almost like a barre chord but without the pressure. Try to get an open legato sound with all notes equal in velocity and ringing out cleanly.
Image 5 of 5 Modern metal guitar with Pin from SikTh
Example 4: This last example features two-hand tapping. The second note in the third beat uses the picking hand's third finger to tap in with the second (the first holds the pick). This may be awkward at first if you usually use just one tapping finger. As ever, take care that each note is clean and no other strings are accidentally sounded. There's also a sliding picking hand tap in beat three of the second bar.
FutTv : jfmS92dN4p4MU

With a unique angle on composition, incredible rhythm section work and an outlandish and highly original modern rock guitar approach, SikTh have received worldwide critical acclaim.

In this video lesson, SikTh guitarist Pin takes you through a few examples of the band's modern metal guitar style. Many of SikTh's unusual sounding riffs incorporate different areas of modern rock lead technique, such as picking-hand and fretting-hand tapping.

Although the licks here are quite complicated, they become easier to understand once you've memorised how they sound. It's important, as with all technical playing, to start really slow and ensure that each note is accurate and clean before speeding up.


We've got four examples here - click for full-sized tab. You can also take a look at our tab guide for help with guitar notation.

The SikTh tone

SikTh guitarists Dan Weller and Pin use PRS guitars and handmade customs courtesy of Blackmachine guitars. Their amps of choice are Peavey, with Line 6 effects.

To get a similar tone you will need a guitar with a powerful bridge humbucker and a high-gain amp with the midrange backed off and the treble and bass full on. For the video here, Pin used a Blackmachine guitar loaded with Bare Knuckle pickups through a high-gain setting on IK Multimedia's Amplitube 2.

More information is on the official SikTh website.