Riff ov the Week: IRON MAIDEN


Since its inception, Riff ov the Week has had a single general rule: No Iron Maiden. Why? Because it’s like a grown-ass man showing up to a footie pajama pillow fight with a garage-project Howitzer you designed to shoot pillows with pinpoint accuracy at tremendous and perilous velocities. You’re technically still fighting with pillows, but it’s unjust and irresponsible. But this week – and this week only – we’re letting everyone break out the big guns. 

Last week, Howard Dean’s Disma riff took the supergroup edition crown with 17 votes. His reward is the feeling of a job well done after giving 100%.


Next week:

  • Vegglampe has suggested that, since we’ve done album openers, the time is nigh for an edition for album closers. I agree.
  • Send your album-closing riffs to toiletovhellriff@gmail.com. Include your name, a link, the time of the riff, and an explanation.
  • If you have an idea for a theme, let me know.



Not just my favorite Maiden riff, but quite possibly my favorite riff ever written. Iron Maiden knows how to kick off an album, and beginning of Somewhere in Time is one of the greatest in the history of metal. That gallop under those signature guitar harmonies gives me an iron erection. Starts at around 0:50, but I suggested letting it build from the start. Up the irons.



I love eponymous songs. The opening riff. I know you know it.


Shrimp in a Pizza Box

Explanation: >open Spotify >go to Iron Maiden >top tracks >1st one: Fear of the Dark >FUCK >2nd one >pick a riff >submit. 0:07.


Vegglampe Ted Nü-Djent

V: “Dance of Death” builds up perfectly, and the riff at 2:59 keeps on giving several climaxes for the song, which in general is tighter than Batman’s suit.

TND: I figure at this time of submission that all early era Maiden riffs have been submitted, so you may attend the renaissance fair at 3:00, which is then followed by some of the most perfect guitar solos you will ever hear.


Ahmed Johnson

There are so many choices for an Iron Maiden riff that it’s almost impossible to pick one. Here’s mine. 0:00 to 0:26.



Up the Irons. 0:50.


Iron Lawnmower

10/10 best riff. 1,000 years anal destruction riff. Fucking riff of fucking doom mega riffage yeah yeah riffity riffity riff fuck yeah ooggle boggle bing bang ba boo.


Leif Bearikson

While this is a riff that completely rules on it’s own, within the context of the song it feels like sweet release. A driving build up that soars straight into the solo, as well as the hearts and minds of non-posers everywhere. 9:02.



This Riff ov the Week edition is sponsored by Iron Maiden, so we’re all winners. My vote goes for “Moonchild”, from Seventh Son of a Seventh Son, in this moment my favorite record from La Doncella de Hierro. It’s a great example of how good this band is. The building up on a metal song and the creation of different sensations without relying in bombastic chorus and symphonies, just the core instruments and exploiting the characteristics of the powerhouse that is Bruce. Thanks Maiden bros, for continue inspiring! Riff: 1:57.


Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nip

Iron Maiden has so many classic riffs to choose from. Here’s one of my favorites. Main riff @ 1:45.


Paris Hilton

I consider myself quite versed in the art of jamming to Maiden, as well as the art of jamming to tunes that use one riff to carry an entire song (such as “Walk” by Pantera or “Symphony of Destruction”). “Wrathchild” from Killers gives me the best of both worlds! This bumping bassline compliments the guitar work to give this song that UMPH it needs! Although I like all Maiden albums, I prefer their older stuff when they had a drunken Judas Priest fan in a sleeveless shirt headbanging vibe to them. When they focused on the rock rather than how epic they can make their songs. 15 fucking minutes for one song!? I don’t got time for that shit!


Virgil the Ghost Poet

Hello everyone. This is my favorite Maiden song. Do I really need to put the time down? Enjoy.



An Iron Maiden ROTW??? You’re gonna need a bigger locker for this one, folks! The thought of it all immediately made me want to gargle the balls of “Aces High”, but being the posevr extraordinaire that I am, I went a different route. Not only does TTLBLAH feature my favorite vocal performance by Bruce, but it has some super simple and super awesome riffs. Look for them at the opening and @ 6:20 when the song goes in for the finale (note: have a fresh set of undies for when the solo kicks in).


Randall Thor

Every Maiden riff is better than everyone else’s riffs. Fact. If you don’t vote for every single person on this ROTW, you are a false. To re-iterate this fact, listen to the guitar/bass work on the verse (or really, the whole song) for this track. If you think you’re better than Maiden, pick up that guitar or bass and try learning this song. You will either fail miserably or have the time of your life playing some of the best and most fun music ever written.


Jimmy McNulty

First of all, The Trooper is overrated. Okay let’s go to their second album Killers, to a song that starts — and ends — as a ballad. But that middle section! Thrashy, punky, NWOBHMy goodness. P.S. Fuck modern Paul Dianno! 2:23. [Do note: This song is not from Killers and Mcnulty is a poserhack. — Masterlord].



I’m a jackass and forgot all about this until the last minute and knew some of the ones I would pick had already been taken, but I’m glad to go with one a little less obvious. I could have went with one of their signature gallops but instead I’m going for one with a different feel. Starts when the guitars do but it’s better in the chorus.


Jay Alan Goodwin

The beginning riff and that which begins at about 30 seconds are so good that they’d make Iommi and Blackmore proud. Piece of Mind is stacked with nothing less than brilliant songs and musicianship but “Revelations” is worth the price of admission alone.


Simon Phoenix

As much as people shit on Blaze Bayley and his two albums, they have some excellent moments on them. For example, the riff at 1:58 of this song. The buildup with the clean guitar chords and Blaze calmly singing about the horrors of war sets the mood well, then BAM the riff comes in. Simple, bluesy, mid paced, and badass. It goes back to the clean guitar for a bit and then comes back in with a sweet solo behind it. No matter the quality of the singer or the songwriting or the production, Maiden always comes through with the riffs.

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