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Best riff ever?

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Somebody in a place far away from here got into it over this. I can't help but wonder ... how is this even a real question?

"Smoke on the water" is so not the right answer (though it might just be the most molested riff ever). 

Kashmir was suggested. By Led Zeppelin, of course. Thinking about it ... okay, it takes a little something to come up with that riff in the first place. That's not the first time this guy has touched a guitar, like. And isn't there something disturbing about the time notation going on? They seem to be off by about half a beat, going in circle ... this is some weird shit, like 5/8 vs. 8/14 or something. Which reminds me that Robert Fripp and Adrian Belew (King Crimson) had an arrangement of that kind, but I can't remember what song, nor even what album. 

Is it possible to determine any "best riff ever"? Where to even begin?

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One of my favs was in "Flashback, Heart Attack" by EZO. Single guitarists yet sounds like a pair playing in sync.
Another is "The Trooper", can't mistake when Adrian and Dave burst out in that intro and those bridges.
So many to list.
"Best ever" would be difficult I agree.

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I wouldn't know where to start either. Picking personal favorites is fine, but pretending to have an objective answer is absurd. I don't get much out of that sort of discussion, being (among other things) not the kind of person who likes having arguments. There are too many kickass guitar parts out there, and honestly most of the value of any part is the purpose it serves in the context of a song.

My favorite example of that kind of overlapping polyrhythm in the guitars in King Crimson's stuff is in "Frame By Frame" off of Discipline, but they do it on other albums with that lineup as well. Really love that effect. Not quite the same sensation as the rotating feel of the drumbeat vs. the guitar in "Kashmir" (which I think is mostly a riff in 3/4 played against a drum part in 4/4), but it's a similar idea.

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3 minutes ago, Athame said:

It's hard to say what's the Best Riff ever, but there's a band with crazy riffs called "Forced Entry", Insane riffs really, too bad they only released only 2 albums.

Great call. I love Forced Entry, especially As Above, So Below. Brad Hull was a sick riffer in his prime. His whammy bar hits are priceless.

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20 hours ago, FatherAlabaster said:

My favorite example of that kind of overlapping polyrhythm in the guitars in King Crimson's stuff is in "Frame By Frame" off of Discipline, but they do it on other albums with that lineup as well. Really love that effect. Not quite the same sensation as the rotating feel of the drumbeat vs. the guitar in "Kashmir" (which I think is mostly a riff in 3/4 played against a drum part in 4/4), but it's a similar idea.

Yeah ... King Crimson were nasty like that. Okay, so you have over the hills and far away technicians such as Tosin Abasi ... but it takes a little something to come up with innocent material that kind of just plods along, sounding simple enough, until you get a creeping deja vu feeling before you really understand what's happening. That's genius.

As for most consistent manufacurer of outstanding riffs, I think it's hard to get around Jimmy Page though. Man, has he hit home a time or two with his touch and timing. Then there is of course Tony Iommi. You can't argue against Tony Iommi. He knows how to riff. Which is actually a quite narrow discipline, isn't it? If for instance I say Angus Young ... yes, riffmaster, definitely. But you wouldn't say that about Eric Clapton, great as he may be to play the guitar. Next I will mention Dimebag Darrell, as a guy who knew how to riff. What are the properties of a good riff? It must have groove, right? Riffing is kind of "funky" in a sense. Rhythmic.


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In my opinion best riff is found it in Floods "Pantera"

Floods solo tab by Pantera

Tuning for this song:
tune down 1 1/2 steps (low to high: C# F# B E G# C#)

      (C#m)                                      (A)
B |---|-------8-----8/9--8vvvvvv-6h8p6p4-6^vvvvv-|-----------------------------|
E |---|----6-----6-------------------------------|-------9^----9/13-14^vvvvvv--|
   Gtr.1 (Doubled)                       P.H             P.H        P.H--------|

              (F#m)                                      (B)
B |--------------|------------------------------------------|-------6^----6^b8----|
E |-13^vvvvv-11^\|------6-----6^/7-6^vvvvvv--4h6-4p2-4^vvvv-|----4-----4----------|
    P.H----------|P.M-|   P.M P.H----------|         P.H--------------------------|       P.H   P.H

B |-6^-4h6p4p2-4--4^b5vvvvv--|---------8-----8/9-/11vvvvvv-----------|------------|
E |--------------------------|------6-----6--------------------------|------------|
    P.H           P.H                                      P.H--------------------|

    (A)                                           (F#m)
B |------------------------------------------------|----------------------------|
E |-------9-----9/13-14----13^b14r-13^b14r-11^vvvv-|-------6-----6b7-6^vvvvvv---|
       P.M   P.M           P.H---------------------|P.M-------------------------|    P.M    P.H

B |----------------|-------6^----6^b8--6^---4-6-4p2-4^vv--4^b5vvvvv-|-|-----------|
E |-4-6p4p2-4^vvvv-|----4-----4-------------------------------------|-|-----------|
            P.H            P.H   P.H   P.H          P.H---------------------------|

B |----11b13r(11)b13---------11b13---11b13---11b13---11b13---11b13---11------|
E |---x----------------------------------------------------------------------|

B |------------------|-----------------------------------------------------------|
E |------------------|-----------------------------------------------------------|

B |------------------------11b13----11b13|11-12p11p9-11-11p9----11----9b11-------|
E |--------------------------------------|-------------------11----11------11-9--|

B |----11----9---------11----9b---------11----9b-------|--9---9\8------8--8\6----|
E |-11----11---11-9-11----11----11-9-11----11---11-9-11|-11--11\9---9--9--9\7----|
                                                     Gtrs.3 and 4

                     ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~       ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
B |----6--6\4-----5b6-r(5)------------------------------------------------------|
E |-7--7--7\6--6--6b7-r(6)------------------------------------------------------|
                     ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~  Gtr.3~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

B |----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
E |----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
                          *Bend tapped (t) notes w/left hand at 19th fret.

B |---------------------------------|--------------------x-----------------------|
E |---------------------------------|--------------------------------------------|

B |-----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
E |-----------------------------------------------------------------------------|

B |------------------------------------------------------------16----16--------|
E |----------------------------------------------------------------------------|
 Gtr.3 (Dbld)

             (B)                                            (A)
B |-16\14b-(14)/|----------------------------------------------------------------|
E |-------------|----------------------------------------------------------------|

                                                dive w/bar    +1_____
    (B)                                              \       /       \
B |-------------|---------------------------|---------0----(x)-------------\----|
E |-------------|---------------------------|-------------------------------\---|
              Gtr.3                                                     slack

               __+6__             __+6
  *Steady gliss_/      \__       __/    \            _+6      _+6      _+6      _
         __/            \     /        \    /   \    /   \    /   \    /
C#|------/----------------\---/---|------\--/-- --\--/-----\--/-----\--/-------|
B |-----5^----------------(5)-----|------(5)------(5)------(5)------(5)--------|
E |-------------------------------|--------------------------------------------|
G#|--------*Raise pitch one octave|--------------------------------------------|
C#|--------w/Digitech Whammy Pedal|--------------------------------------------|
 Gtrs.4 and 5 (arr. for one gtr.)

   _+6   _+6         w/bar
      \ /            ~~~~~~~~~~
C#|----\--/---------------\-----------|| Last 3 bars were very difficult to tab
F#|----(5)-------------(5)-\----------|| 'cause there were bunch of weird symbols
B |----(5)-------------(5)--\---------|| in the magazine.
E |--------------------------\--------||


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