Riff Of The Week: Mortuary Edition


Brought to you by Cementery’s Rapid-Set Gravecrete™ – “The Original Plot-Thickener!.

Before we go for a joyful graveyard jaunt let’s take a look at last week’s results from our brutal Anatomy Edition. The voting public dissected the competition into three suspiciously even portions, leading us to assume you’ve had some hands-on surgical experience before; although the resulting mess indicates it was most likely obtained in a dilapidated farm shed rather than a sterile laboratory-type environment. Maybe practice some aseptic technique once in a while, or at least put a fucking drop-sheet down first next time ya grubs. Well done to HD and Richter for posting exceptional riffs and well done to one of them for winning, but most of all well done to the 34.9% of you who recognised this inarguable and completely objective fact and voted accordingly.

This week we asked for mortuary-themed riffs and we got some fitting entries. As it turns out we ended up with 6 riffs from 6 songs by 6 bands, which most certainly for sure 100% definitely means something sinister is afoot, like tinea. Now it’s time for you to tip up the urn of that estranged relative and check if they really did overdose by sifting through the ashes (being sure to remove all the black bits), railing up the remains and catching the ol’ ski-lift (preferably through one of those twirly straws) to oblivion. Don’t forget to use the PROMO CODE OBLONG prior to voting to get your third kettle descaling free of charge courtesy of the TovH (*). Now it’s time to riff and/or die!

Positronic Brain

Bloodbath – “Total Death Exhumed”

I love riffs wherein the guitars are doing different things in each of your ears when you’re listening with headphones. In this one, starting at 0:48, guitar 1 hits just the main chords, shoveling grave dirt into your mouth and eyes with the absolute FILTHIEST HM-2 guitar tone I’ve ever heard, while guitar 2 does doodly lead guitar-ish things like Randy Rhoads would play if he could be exhumed and reanimated as a Swedeath guitarist. One of the most memorable riffs on this really good album.

Ted Nu-Djent

Black Sabbath – “Electric Funeral”

I didn’t want to submit something so obvious but how could I not submit one of the greatest riffs of all time? One that has been aped over and over again a thousand times over. Riff starts at the beginning but you already new that.


The Crown – “Back From The Grave”

Admittedly, The Crown’s later output makes one wish they would’ve stayed dead, but this was before all that. After a short build-up, the fun starts at 0:12.


Nile – “Sarcophagus”

Despite their relative fame, I still feel like Nile is underappreciated. They’ve just been so consistently good for so many albums, they get kind of taken for granted, or passed over in favour of more underground/brutal/techy/whatever bands. Well fuck that shit. Nile brings the riffs, and Sarcophagus is just fantastic doomy death metal, with the music perfectly matching the atmosphere of the lyrical subject matter. A perfect proof that you don’t need technicality or shredding to destroy faces. This entire song is excellent, but from 3:00 on is one of my favourite outros of all time. Get your Egyptian funeral fix here.

Howard Dean

Crypt Vapor – “Tombe Della Citta”

Do synth riffs count? Enter Crypt Vapor. 80’s synth sleaze straight out of a cheesy thriller. It’s all about that atmosphere. I’m expecting a bevy of down-tuned derivative caverncore riffs this week, so why not mix it up a bit? While I do love me some Incantantion worship, ain’t nobody got time to drown in all that mud today. Press play right at the beginning. Oh snap! Do you feel like you’re in a John Carpenter movie? Me too! Shit’s about to pop off, and I’ve got a chubby. Brb, me and Roddy Piper need to fight off a swarm of aliens and bloodthirsty ghouls.


Xasthur – “Funerals Drenched In Apathy”


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Next week we’re going to be doing British riffs. Along with our usual NO MAIDEN rule, I’m stipulating an additional no Judas Priest caveat for this theme. Send your entries to toiletovhellriff@gmail.com before Friday, including your screen-name, a link to the riff with a time-stamp, and a short-description.

*- Offer only valid at participating outlets.

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