MSD and Friends’ Riff of the Week


In this life, there are two things you need to do to attain true and lasting happiness. First, never allow yourself to be the kind of person who says “chillin’ like a villain.” For that is the worst kind of person. Second, devote yourself unflinchingly to The Riff. 

“Thou shalt love The Riff with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.”

We gather this day on the Riff Sabbath (Sunday being taken by those bullies that write Swellin’ to the Jammies) to worship. Fast riffs, slow riffs, new riffs and old riffs – it matters little so long as they bring your metal spirit into communion with The Riff. Deliver us from the flush.


Masterlord SteelDragon:

If we were doing this when Bölzer‘s much-lauded Aura dropped last year, just about every riff would have ended up right here. This year we have Soma, and one nasty riff in particular has managed to worm its way into my gray matter. Skip to 3:50 in “Labyrinthian Graves” and let it do the same to you.

Mutilation Rites has been known to sprinkle their black metal with the occasional pissed-off, punked-out banger. Here’s on of my favorites off their new album, Harbinger. You can skip to 3:20 to hear it, but I’ll admit it sounds better within the context of the entire song.


Joe Thrashnkill:

This video is likely to get stripped from the internet before you can listen to it BUT the siren-like “WEEOOHWEEOOHWEEOOH” line that kicks off Panopticon‘s new record Roads to the North is just awesome. Is that even a guitar? I dunno. But buy this record, for reals.



My work this week was soul-crushing, so I need a soul-crushing riff to match.


Christian Molenaar:

Though they’re pretty much inarguably not metal, this Mahavishnu track is too brutal to pass up. After the clanging, crashing intro, John McLaughlin’s winding guitar arpeggios come in with a relaxed beat from Billy Cobham before Jerry Goodman’s violin enters, building to a burning unison melody and a shredding solo. This song = definition of a banger. Jump to 0:40.



The opening riffs are nothing fancy or technical, but they are dirty, catchy and groovy. I can’t help but want to headbang through this whole song, but especially at the beginning. This song is from Funest‘s 2014 album, but it sounds like it’s from the early 90’s. Old school death metal done right.


Amen and amen.

What’s your riff of the week? Share it here! If you want me to post yours next week, message my alter ego (London a.k.a. “London from Arizona, livecast flusher”) in the Reason, Honor and Respect Crew. Enjoy your Saturday, peasants! 

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