Freak Show, Silverchair’s sophomore effort, proves that the Australian grunge power trio is more than an overhyped, flash-in-the-pan, boy-wonder band. The songwriting is more evolved, the playing is tighter, the tones are heavier and more deliberate, and there is less reliance on the Seattle-inspired formulas of the first album. The current and first worldwide single, Freak, is what the group is all about: crunchy, bowel-loosening guitar rhythms, unadorned, in-your-face arranging, and the hubris of youth that has always been a cornerstone of rock music.
Drop D tuning. Tune the sixth string down a whole step to D.
Rhy. Fig. 1 is the main riff found in the intro and verses. It utilizes the simpler power chord shapes made accessible by the Drop D tuning. Note that, with this tuning, fretted power chords like the E5 can be played as simple one-finger barres, and D5 can be played as open strings [Fig. 1]. These advantages are employed throughout Freak in the various rhythm progressions of Rhy. Fig. 2 and Rhy. Fig. 3, as well as in the bridge.
The unusual dissonant voicing found in the pre-chorus, Fmaj7add#11, is noteworthy. It is the result of adding the open first and second strings to an F major chord. The open second string is B, the added #11, and the open first string is E, the major 7th. If this chord is new to you, it is useful to begin with a refingered form of the F5 chord and build the voicing up from there [Fig. 2].
The chorus uses varied textures. Here, guitarist Daniel Johns takes a break from his thick power chord strumming to arpeggiate an F5-to-Fsus2 change in the first measure and add a pedal point line in the second. Both are played in steady eighth-note rhythm. Let’s look at each measure separately. The F5 chord is a three-note form played as an index-finger barre across the lowest three strings. The sus2 is added to the barred shape with the third finger [Fig. 3]. The advantages of the Drop D tuning are obvious in the chord fingerings required to play this figure. It would be quite a stretch in standard tuning.
The pedal point line involves notes on the sixth and fourth strings [Fig. 4]. Note that the low open D is constant in the line and is therefore the pedal point. The D, E, and F# notes on the fourth string are alternated with the low D pedal point for a strong and motion-oriented musical effect.
It’s a part of Silverchair Freak guitar lesson.
Below you can download PDF guitar tabs and sheet music of
Freak with backing track
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