Smash­ing strum­mings…

Cor­gan and Iha’s play­ing tricks

Total Guitar - - SMASHING PUMPKINS -

As gui­tar duo for one of the most in­flu­en­tial 90s alt-rock bands, Billy Cor­gan and James Iha cre­ate in­tri­cate lay­ered parts with grungy pow­er­chords, am­bi­ent dream pop arpeg­gios and heavy, fuzz-dis­tor­tion in­fused riffs. Cor­gan’s catchy vo­cal melodies and ma­jor scale based riffs in songs like Tonight,tonight gave the band broad ap­peal, which earned them huge suc­cess. And, though their scale choice is of­ten sim­ple (stick­ing to ma­jor and nat­u­ral mi­nor scales), Billy’s bit­ing vo­cal de­liv­ery and song­writ­ing chops in­fuse the band’s ma­te­rial with at­ti­tude. Billy tends to use bends, legato and slower melodic lines in his lead work.

We’re look­ing at some typ­i­cal tech­niques used by Cor­gan and Iha. Play through our riffs to get some trade­mark Pump­kins sounds in your own play­ing.

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