Level: Intermediate - Advanced
Tuning: E A D G B E (Standard)
I remember getting the album "Images and Words" by Dream Theater and clasping it tightly on my adventure home from the local CD store and believing that there was magic infused in the album... And I was sort of right. I've always wanted to learn "Another Day" but found the guitar sound and melody too... George Michaely. Now, many years later (and now I'm not a surly metal head) I am fully aware of the emotive win this song can offer.
This solo has some cool legato, shredding and pentatonic licks that are well worth adding into your arsenal! As usual we'll break the solo down into problematic sections and I'll leave a link to the tab and YouTube lesson at the bottom of the article.
If I didn't make it clear in my introduction... This solo is extremely emotional. The first section is very expressive and uses a lot of bends. (See excerpt below)
This solo may be and excellent catalyst for all you guys to take some time out from shredding and really concentrate on keeping your full tone and semi tone bends as in tune and emotional as possible. Have a listen to Petrucci's playing and phrasing on this solo a couple of times and really try getting in touch with the emotion.
The section section of this solo begins with a small legato lick with a cheeky slide into some lightning fast triplet shredding. Let's take a look at a small excerpt from the solo. (See excerpt below)
One thing that is crucial with an 11th to 7th stretch is thumb placement. I tend to have my thumb in line with my middle finger so the pinky can properly span out and get the strength it needs to be legatod (I know it's not really a word) properly.
This is followed up with a pretty vicious semiquaver (or 16th) triplet shred. I would suggested getting out your metronome and practice these 6 triplets over and over by themselves. The shapes are too bad, but I've seen easier so be patient building up to Petrucci album speed!
The third section has a really cool lick using two 5 note groupings. This lick is predominantly made of notes from the first box shape of the G# minor pentatonic up the octave. (See excerpt below)
It really annoyed me when I first learned this lick as it can be difficult to get the little semi-quaver triplet in the middle of the groups of 5. Take your time with this while phrase and try listening to this part of the song constantly when practicing it to get a better idea of the obscure timing and phrasing.
The last section of this solo has some crazy hammer ons, pull-offs and slides. Let's tale a look at the lick (See excerpt below)
I really like the slide 5ths that have that have sort of this high power chord vibe. I've heard Petrucci do it in a few songs and it's always win. This concept is definitely worth trying to implement into your own playing.
You'll notice the second bar combines lots of hammers and pull-offs being mixed in with slides. Licks like this can be really tough at first but if played enough times can actually increase your speed, dexterity and overall fretting hand stamina.
I hope you guys have enjoyed this emotional whirlwind. I'll be bring you more solos and exercises soon! Happy shredding!
By Chris Zoupa