How to play the classic 2 string arpeggios as a DSX player?

Greetings I was wondering how to play 2 string arpeggios as DSX player at super high speeds, the regular picking for USX players would be D-D-U for the pattern, really a sweep followed by a USX string change, I’ve seen mainly two versions, one is with a pull off on the upstroke which leaves some time to get the downstroke that follows, it’s basically 4 notes total for the arpeggio, the other version is 3 notes on the arpeggio removing the pull off, I find this harder depending on the speed since you are pretty much required to do the USX string change without the little extra time off the pull off. As DSX player I find the challenges would be mostly really fast ascending continous sweeps and then the USX string change.

I’ll leave some example here of what I mean exactly, two string arpeggios with pull off, really fast and also really long so using improper mechanics I think one would get tired quickly:

Two string arpeggios without the pull off:

If you want to pick every note at those speeds I think you would have to use USX.

With DSX, if your form is capable of doing downstroke sweeps, you could do D-D-U, with the upstroke as a helper motion. Probably wouldn’t be as fast as USX though. Also you could do D-Pluck-hammer if you do hybrid picking. It would be a different sound and I’m not sure what the speed limit would be.

EDIT: you can also rearrange the picking to play some of these arpeggios, with two notes on the b string and one on the e, for example. The picking would be U-D on b, U on e, repeat. The phrase loops around with an upstroke sweep. U-D-U-U-D-U.

I’ve come across this exact same problem with DSX, this type of lick definitely doesn’t play to DSX’s natural strengths. The most common approach for a DSX guy for the 3 note version is a downstroke followed by an upstroke into a hammer, demonstrated nicely by Andy James here:

For the four note version you could just pull off after your hammered note or you could do downstroke, upstroke, downstroke, pull off repeat. You end up with two downstrokes in quick sucession but it’s actually a really common way that licks get played. Apply that approach to your pentatonic box in 12th postion and everyone from Kirk Hammett to Paul Gilbert plays with that picking pattern and you can get it pretty fast!

The only other common way for a DSX player (who maybe isn’t aware that there are) would be to switch to USX for the lick, which is also perfectly valid :slightly_smiling_face:


It’s crazy how far ahead of his time “lick-library Andy James” was. He was basically DSX-ifying the entirety of metal vocabulary before anyone even knew what DSX was :slight_smile:


Amazing answers here, I think these are some pretty good alternatives to play this type of lick which is extremely common, so I think it’s good to have some DSX ways of tackling this.

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