I first studied Shane’s educational material via his previous book, The Next Step (reviewed here back in 2019)
Later on I found out about these two eBooks that he released specifically covering picking technique.
With a title like “Monster Picking Technique”, it certainly sparks some curiosity. Then, when I heard the audio samples of the etudes, I was convinced to get the first eBook.
Playing through the etudes, everything is beautiful, succinct and focused. These are short pieces of music that help you develop better picking chops, exactly as Shane promised.
Unlike typical technique books or courses, the big difference is that all the pieces sound great and are logically composed. Although some folks might be surprised after buying the eBooks to see that the pieces are so short, this is actually a strength of these works.
The duration makes it actually humanly possible for the hardworking guitarist to memorize the etudes and incorporate them rapidly into a regular practice routine.
Any of these etudes certainly beat playing a boring two or four bar pattern when it comes to practicing picking.
Most of these sound classically influenced and imply beautiful chord progression as they weave all over the guitar fretboard. The fingerings are clearly notated and picking indications are clear so that you know what to do on every single note.
Personally, I love Etudes #1, #2, #4 and #5 from Volume 1 and Etudes #1, #2 and #5 from Volume 2.
All in all, these are some of the most inspiring “technique” pieces I’ve practiced recently. The only other one that I remember enjoying a lot is the first warmup from Ben Eunson’s How To Warm Up: 20 Practical Concepts for the Contemporary Guitarist.
In conclusion, I recommend these eBooks to any guitarist who wants some kind of practice routine for alternate picking but wants it to be musical & manageable. For that purpose, these are perfect!
Pros: Musical and beautiful etudes from Shane Theriot to help develop your picking technique. The accompanying audio files help you hear what they are supposed to sound like at both performance tempo and slower tempos.
Cons: Some people might find the short etudes, but I find that the short length is the strength of these pieces. Also there are no videos or additional tips on holding the pick or pick angle, so be aware of that when you get these books. These are strictly etudes!
TLDR: If you want to get your alternate picking into better shape but don’t want to work on boring exercises, give these etudes a go! Shane Theriot has written some mighty fine pieces to help your chops grow even faster.
Get the eBooks here from Shane’s official store: https://www.shanetheriot.com/pages/lessons-product
I wrote a lot of other book, course and video reviews too.
Check out the rest here:
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