Ladies and gentlemen, mount your flying Vs, here we are then, the final baton charge in the riff war.
We appear to have drifted into the early nineties and I have several riffs to offer you today. Warning: one of them comes from that most despised of all cross-genre pollinations Rap-metal. Oh yeah. The Judgement Night soundtrack? That’s a bit too arty for me, I mean it’s got Sonic Youth on and (horror of horrors) Teenage Fanclub. I like it a tad more basic.
I should also point out that two of these riffs will be derived from thrash/speed metal. Not a genre I like much on its own terms, but one which seems to have lent itself well to incorporation into other forms.
I was going to say that rap and rock hybridized fairly quickly, but I suppose they were just part of an ongoing dialogue, I mean, it is called Planet Rock, right? I assume there is an earlier example of rap/metal than Run D.M.C’s Rock Box (now that surely is an utter production masterpiece) but I don’t know what it is. I believe Kerry King from Slayer did the riff on this AND this. The killer riff/hook though is the use of the Knack’s My Sharona on this terminally infectious banger.
Run DMC how do I love THEE!
It should also be pointed out that Public Enemy, who still remain a kind of high-minded-high-modernist watermark for hip hop on the part of the musically right-thinking, LOVED a bit of guitar wank, didn’t they? My Uzi Weighs a Ton, Sophisticated Bitch, She Watch Channel Zero,. Oh, how we laughed when they chose to collaborate with Anthrax, of all people, on a souped-up Bring the Noise. They even let the little baldy fellow rap! Oh dear.
Perhaps it was all just a marriage of convenience to help boost record sales .
Here’s a riff from what appears to be my favourite album of all time, but in superior and slightly obscure remixed form. I suggest you turn it up…
..and keep it turned up for these two, from arguably my second favourite record of all time.
It would be unfair of me to leave you without a final grace-riff from the widely despised RATM, here not really covering Dylan.