If you’re curious about Lamb of God tuning and what tunings this band uses, you’ve come to the right post!
I’m not exactly a guitar expert, but I have played the instrument since 2003 and know a thing or two about it.
So what is Lamb of God tuning?
This band uses two main tunings:
- Drop D which is D2-A2-D3-G3-B3-E4 and,
- Drop C# which is C2#-G#2-C#3-F#3-A#3-D#4
I’ll explain these further in the sections below.
Examining the Band’s Style
Before we get into tunings, let’s quickly examine the Lamb of God’s music. They formed back in 1994 under a different name. From 2000 and onward, they worked as Lamb of God.
Coming from the mid-1990s, they’re considered to be part of the new wave of American heavy metal. Maybe it’s a bit of a broad definition. But let’s narrow it down a little.
Most often, Lamb of God is defined as groove metal. It’s not a surprise as their songs have this serious Pantera vibe. Speaking of Pantera, I have a blog post about Pantera tuning if you’re interested in reading about the alternate tunings they use. However, along with groove-laden riffs, they also have some other elements in there.
Just like most metal bands that formed during the era, they kind of gravitated towards nu-metal. (Check out my nu-metal band name generator to learn more about this genre.) No, they’re absolutely not in the vein of Limp Bizkit. However, if you were to hear them back then, they’d definitely sound fresh.
Then there are also a few other subgenres in there. Although based on groove metal, which in itself is based on thrash, we also have some death metal elements.
Of course, you may also notice that they’re inspired by old-school hardcore punk. Along with this also come some metalcore elements as well. And, with such a blend of styles, they manage to sound pretty unique.
Guitar Tunings That Lamb of God Uses
So how is their style relevant to the topic? Well, aside from changing the sound, different tunings are also here to make things easier for musicians.
The bands that started their work in the 1990s and the early 2000s often relied on drop tunings. This allowed them to go lower while retaining string tension.
There’s just something about playing that low octave on the bottom two strings. Take any drop tuning, place your index finger on the 5th fret of the 5th string, and play the bottom two strings. Awesome, right?
And, most importantly, drop tunings allow easier access to power chords. Just use a one-finger bar chord on the bottom two or three strings.
Additionally, things will just sound different. You can play power chords on the 4th and 5th strings along with the open 6th string. Overall, all of these things pose great advantages to metal musicians.
There are, however, two different drop tunings. If you want the main Lamb of God tuning, then it’s drop D. They also use an additional one on occasion, the drop C#. So let’s get into this and describe them both.
As mentioned, this is Lamb of God’s most commonly used tuning. Almost all of their material is written and recorded in the drop D tuning. This one was fairly popular when they started. Over the years, they just stuck with it.
So what is drop D? And what are drop tunings? To those who are not familiar, drop tunings have a different distribution of intervals between strings compared to E standard and other standard tunings.
Instead of lowering all strings, you just drop the bottom 6th string. It’s pretty simple. It looks like this:
As you can see, it’s the same as E standard, except for the 6th string. Just replace the D2 with E2 and you’ve got yourself good old E standard tuning.
Except for the 6th string, everything else remains the same. 2nd and 3rd strings have one major 3rd interval between them. Other strings are in perfect 4th intervals. That’s about it.
Now, drop C# isn’t usually that common. However, you can still find it among metal musicians. And Lamb of God has used this one on some of their works. For instance, Resolution and Wrath records have some stuff in drop C# tuning.
In particular, the song Reclamation is a good example. For more about how to play this song, check out this awesome guitar cover video.
Okay, so how do you get this drop C# tuning? Although you may be weirded out by the sharp, it’s actually pretty simple.
First, you lower all strings by one semitone. This way, you achieve the D# standard, also known as the Eb standard. It should look like this:
Up next, you just drop the bottom string by two additional semitones. Then you get this:
And that’s pretty much the drop C# tuning. Another way to name this tuning would be drop Db. In that case, you write it down like this:
Essentially, this is all like drop D, with all strings tuned a semitone lower. The bottom string is 3 semitones below E standard. This gives you a lot of room for those chugging heavy riffs.
What Guitars Should You Use for Their Music and Their Tunings?
As you can see, Lamb of God prefers drop tunings over regular ones. There are two main reasons for this. First, it allows them to go lower without too much of a hassle. Additionally, they also keep string tension at normal levels.
With that said, you can use any standard electric or acoustic guitar for these tunings. Scale lengths of 24 to 25.5 inches are perfectly fine for this purpose. What’s more, I don’t think you need any special pickups either.
After all, these tunings aren’t too deep. Both the string tension and tone will come out okay. I’d just suggest that you don’t go with super-light string gauges. Your average .010s will do just fine.
Lamb of God Tuning: Conclusion
I hope this article has clarified which tunings the band, Lamb of God, uses.
And as always, feel free to leave me a message in the comments below if you have questions about this or another guitar-related topic!