Guitar Lesson - Andreas Kisser Brazilian Rhythms Make Crushing Metal Songs

Andreas Kisser is the lead guitarist and songwriter for the legendary Brazilian metal band Sepultura.When you listen to Sepultura you don’t think of traditional Brazilian music. But, if you listen closely you can hear how this band cultivated its Brazilian heritage---fusing rhythms such as Baiâo into their heavy metal music. Baiâo (pronounced “bye-own”) is a rhythmic formula that originated in Northeast Brazil. The main Baiâo instrument is a Zabumba which is a flat double-headed bass drum played with a mallet and a stick. The Baião incorporates elements of indigenous Mestizo, African and European music with flutes and wooden shakers added as accents. Kisser decided that a heavy distorted guitar could make a kick ass Baiâo rhythm as well and has penned many songs using this rhythm formula such as Old Earth and Sepulnation.

Today I’m going to give you an example of how to use traditional ideas and concepts to broaden your horizons.

Let’s start by breaking down the Baiâo rhythm and then I’ll give you an exercise so you can understand how to apply this feel in a metal fashion. In EX.1 find the Baiâo rhythmic breakdown. Try clapping this pattern or strumming with dead strums to feel the syncopation, notice where this rhythm accents on the 1 – a - & - 3 – a - & in the sixteenth note breakdown.  In EX.2 play the simple metal riff Kisser created that applies the Baiâo rhythm to the guitar. Notice how he places the rhythm accents into this riff at the same points ss the rhythmic breakdown. EX.3 shows how Kisser Metalized this riff and makes it into a pounding metal guitar section! By adding distortion and hitting power chords this Brazilian rhythm can be transformed into a cool metal song.

This concept of taking traditional music and transforming it into modern metal music is broad and can be applied to most any style of music. Try experimenting with other styles on your own, you can take a waltz, polka, samba or a swing and find your own unique way to Metalize it!  Tap out the rhythm, find the accents and plaster some power chords with full distortion on it. Andreas Kisser’s full length program focusing on these fusing techniques will be available this summer. You can go to RockHouseMethod.com for details. HAPPY SHREDDING!

Example 1

Example 2

Example 3

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