Riff Of The Week: British Edition
This week’s competition is brought to you by Colonialism® – “Rewrite history, the white way!”.
Before you toast your teabag and fill your kettle with crumpets, lets clear the acrid air after last week’s Mortuary Edition. Contrary to what many of us expected, we weren’t forced to choose between a mephitic mélange of morbidity but rather a miscellaneous mix of technical twiddling, sadboi suicidal, sexy synthwave, and one obvious oldie. Evidently, 73.6% of you are benevolent beings, the rest of you will live in infamy from this day forth. You see, I didn’t think it would have to come to this, but to go along with our long-standing NO MAIDEN rule, I’m decreeing that there is now a NO SABBATH blanket ban for RotW. Don’t get mad at me, or even Ted Nu-Djent, you did this to yourselves!
Now that that’s out of the way, on to this week’s British-off. Ahhh, Great Britain, where would we all be without you? Well for most of us, still in Europe I guess. So uhh…thanks? Continuing to use that adjective to describe your dank little island y’all kept leaving to
escape explore is kinda weird though. If we started calling it Awesome Australia, we’d be ridiculed relentlessly. Incredible Ireland? Fucken’ Mad Fiji? Heckin’ Siqq Haiti? See? It’s gauche as fuck. Get with the times Great Britain, you’re better than that. If you weren’t the birthplace of the seminal bands in our favourite genre, Monty Python, David Attenborough, and a bunch of other old shit that is still cool, I’d have to bring up literally everything else that’s happened since. Don’t give me that look. You know what you’ve done. Ok, you’re not that bad, I guess. Some of these riffs below are proof of just that. Make sure you use the PROMO CODE FLINT after voting to get 37% off your next service at Col’s One-Stop Toe-Nail Clipper Sharpening Shop. Also, best cockney rhyming slang for “riffs” in the comments section wins a free laugh courtesy of my idiocy.
Rainbow – “Sixteenth Century Greensleeves”
It’s not quite the low hanging fruit that a Sabbath riff would’ve been, but it’s not far off. At 0:10 is where the main riff begins. Old man iz old.
Bolt Thrower – “World Eater”
Bolt Thrower cranked out some of the best riffs to come out of the British Isles, and the riff on “World Eater” at 0:11 is perhaps their crowning achievement. Coming off their 1989 Earache Records debut, Realms Of Chaos, this dates back to when the board game-obsessed boys (and girl) where trying to see how low their could tune their instruments without losing intonation. The result was a disgusting, sludgy AWESOME mess. They re-recorded this in 1994 in C# tuning, and I do concede that the new version is much more intelligible, but fuck it, when you need something to inspire you while to march into battle to your most certain demise, the original version (tuned all the way down to A) should be your one and only choice.
Dragged Into Sunlight – “Volcanic Birth”
“If you don’t go along with this, I’ll probably take you to the bed, tie you down, rape you, shoot you, and bury you.” 7:38
Lord ov Bork
Discharge – “Two Monstrous Nuclear Stockpiles”
The hardest riff across the pond doesn’t belong to Sabbath, Motorhead, or Napalm Death. Nope. This one’s all Discharge. Specifically, “Two Monstrous Nuclear Stockpiles.” There’s only one riff and it’s only 4 chords, but play it hard enough, fast enough, and enough times in a row, and you’ve got a recipe for some shit that’ll tear your face off faster than a sheet metal plant can fuck up Tony Iommi’s right hand. Let that shit hit you at the 0:00 mark and carry you along the blast wave until the song’s done.
Lord Rot – “Ripped In Half”
The theme says British, as in, “from Great Britain”, as in, Scotland counts, right? Right. While Hellripper’s latest is probably the most fun record released in 2017 so far, James McBain’s other projects are nothing to sniff at either, so I’ve chosen to go with his interpretation of “Swedeath” and will save the Hellripper riff for when the theme is something like “riffs from songs about conjuring otherworldly beings” *cough*awesomeidea*cough*. Now you probably have a lot of Cradle of Filth and such to sift through this week, so this riff starts as early as 0:22! Isn’t that convenient!
Tesseract – “Deception”
I had about 4 or 5 riffs that I’ve been sitting on, waiting for the right opportunity to unleash. When I started sifting through for this week’s candidate, I realized all of them were from English bands! So after some serious deliberation, I went with the one that’s least likely to meet other RotW requirements. Now I know that the approximate number of people on this site who don’t hate djent is 0.5, so bear with me here for a second. Remember, you’re voting for the riff, NOT the band! This song is pretty stereotypical djent fare, with squeaky clean atmospheric guitar work over chuggy polyrythms with soaring vocals, but then 2:50 hits and shit gets real. I don’t care who you are, that riff kicks ass! Now go vote for that Sabbath riff that somebody just had to submit.
Solstice – “I Am The Hunter”
British Riffs? Solstice are the true kings of British Metal, so I win. Galloping baseline riff beginning at 0:00 gets you in the mood, and begins to thread some epic Power-esque accompaniment in and out at 1:46, repeating several times through the song. MY NAME IS REEEEEEVEEEEEEEENGE.
Scythian – “Beyond The Dust”
Wasn’t originally going to submit but I needed something to listen to tonight and Craven Idol’s latest was the first thing that came up. Then I thought, what’s better than Vrath’s riffs on The Shackles Of Mammon? Oh right, his riffs in Scythian (fite me, nerds). The first track from 2015’s Hvbris In Excelsis has one of those unforgettably epic introductions that adorn only the finest metal albums, but it’s the assault that follows at 1:34 that sets the tone for the next 45 minutes of pure warfare.
Next week we’re going to be getting primal. Send me riffs that turn you into a goddamn caveman. None of that elegant cavelady crap. Send your entries to email@example.com, including a link to the riff, your screen-name, and a short description that contains a time of when the riff starts. Pick something that’s going to make that prehistoric enigma Gorak SMAAASH the motherflushing vote button. You have until Friday.