Top Ten Metal Bands With the Best Riffs

ryanrimmel

The Top Ten

1 Pantera Pantera Pantera was a Heavy Metal band formed in 1981 by guitarist Dimebag Darrell and drummer Vinnie Paul. The group got into mainstream after changing from Glam Metal to Groove Metal. The band's most successful album is "Vulgar Display of Power". As the pioneers of the New Wave of American Heavy Metal, They ...read more.

Not my favorite band, but you've gotta admit Dime has the best riffs out there. Just listen to songs like I'm Broken and Walk. - AngryByrd

A New Level, Becoming, Walk, Domination, Mouth For War and Slaughtered. Said enough.

I actually think Mouth For War is their best riff.
Annihilator, Pantera, Metallica and Amon Amarth - the best riffs. Runners up - Mastodon, Primal Fear. - Metal_Treasure

2 Iron Maiden Iron Maiden Iron Maiden are an English heavy metal band formed in Leyton, East London, in 1975 by bassist and primary songwriter Steve Harris. They were known for some big hits such as The Trooper, and The Number of the Beast, and have released 16 studio albums . The New Wave of British Heavy Metal Pioneers would ...read more.

The Trooper, Aces High, Fear Of The Dark, Hallowed Be Thy Name, Mother Russia, Caught Somewhere In Time, Seventh Son Of A Seventh Son and many more

3 Slayer Slayer ...read more.

I've never really considered guitars to be Slayer's prime. I think Araya is the most talented. - IronSabbathPriest

I agree guitars aren't their prime but maybe Lombardo is the most talented. - Metal_Treasure

Maybe if he did more fills. And less of the "snare snare" repetitiveness. - IronSabbathPriest

@IronSabbathPriest - I agree with you about fills and snare overuse. I adore fills and don't like very much the snare sound (I prefer double bass). But Tom gets repetitive, too. Maybe everybody does at a certain point. - Metal_Treasure

4 Metallica Metallica Metallica is an American Thrash Metal band formed in 1981 . The original lineup was James Hetfield (Vocalist and Rhythm guitarist), Dave Mustaine (Lead Guitar), Lars Ulrich (Drums), Ron McGovney (Bassist). The group came into mainstream from their Self-Titled album and the hit single "Enter Sandman". ...read more.
5 Black Sabbath Black Sabbath Black Sabbath are a Heavy Metal band formed in Birmingham, England in 1968 by guitarist and songwriter Tony Iommi, Singer Ozzy Osbourne, Bassist and Main Lyricist Geezer Butler and Drummer Bill Ward . The band got into mainstream after improving after their debut album got negative feedback . In 1978, ...read more.

Tony Iommi wrote the absolute best and most recognizable riffs of all time. No way Sabbath isn't #1

Notable riffs:
Iron Man
Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
NIB
War Pigs
Supernaut
Heaven and Hell - ryanrimmel

6 Mastodon Mastodon Mastodon is an American heavy metal band from Atlanta, Georgia, formed in early 2000 and composed of bassist Troy Sanders, guitarists Brent Hinds and Bill Kelliher and drummer Brann Dailor.
7 Dio Dio Dio was an American heavy metal band formed in 1982 and led by vocalist Ronnie James Dio, after he left Black Sabbath with intentions to form a new band with fellow former Black Sabbath member, drummer Vinny Appice.
8 Megadeth Megadeth Megadeth is an American thrash metal band from Los Angeles, California. The group was formed in 1983 by guitarist Dave Mustaine and bassist David Ellefson, shortly after Mustaine's dismissal from Metallica. They have released 15 studio albums, and their biggest hits are Symphony of Destruction, Holy ...read more.

Guess I'll vote Megadeth, but where on God's green earth is Opeth?

V 1 Comment
9 Annihilator Annihilator Annihilator is a Canadian thrash metal band founded in 1984 by vocalist, guitarist, bassist, songwriter, engineer, producer, mixer and mastering engineer Jeff Waters and former vocalist John Bates.

Their songs are riff fests and they are #1 for me (alongside Pantera).

Guitar work is their prime - very fast and technical yet melodic riffs. Jeff Waters writes thrash riffs with lots of progressive elements and I love this.
Songs:
Schizos (Are Never Alone), Phantasmagoria, The Trend, Alison Hell, Human Insecticide, 21, Imperiled Eyes, Sixes and Sevens, King of the Kill, Ultra-Motion. - Metal_Treasure

10 Cannibal Corpse Cannibal Corpse Cannibal Corpse is a American death metal band from Buffalo, New York, formed in 1988 . The band is known for their graphic album covers, explicitly violent lyrics and song titles like "I C** Blood" The group got into mainstream after performing the song "Hammer Smashed Face" in the 1994 film Ace Ventura: ...read more.

I'm sorry, but really low guitar messes don't count as riffs. - AngryByrd

The Contenders

11 Amon Amarth Amon Amarth Amon Amarth is a Swedish melodic death metal band from Tumba, formed in 1992. The band takes its name from the Sindarin name of Mount Doom.

I listen to these guys namely for their riffs.
The Pursuit Of Vikings, Tattered Banners and Bloody Flags, Guardians Of Asgaard - Metal_Treasure

12 The Sword

They play that old school stoner metal, and just like other old school bands, they have awesome riffs - ryanrimmel

13 Lamb of God Lamb of God Lamb of God is an American heavy metal band from Richmond, Virginia. Formed in 1994, the group consists of vocalist Randy Blythe, guitarists Mark Morton and Willie Adler, bassist John Campbell, and drummer Chris Adler.
14 Savatage Savatage Savatage is an American heavy metal band founded by the brothers Jon and Criss Oliva in 1978 at Astro Skate in Tarpon Springs, Florida.

An underrated band with great riffs (R.I.P. Criss Oliva):

Hall Of The Mountain King, Sirens, Scream Murder, Jesus Saves, Gutter Ballet. - Metal_Treasure

15 Judas Priest Judas Priest Judas Priest are a British heavy metal band formed in Birmingham, England, in 1969. The band has sold over 45 million albums to date. They received a lot of popularity due to their big hits Breaking The Law, You've Got Another Thing Comin', and Living after Midnight which were played on the radio a ...read more.
16 Primal Fear Primal Fear Primal Fear is a German power metal and speed metal band formed in 1997 by Ralf Scheepers and Mat Sinner.

They have different types of riffs and I love the variety they offer.
All For One, Road to Asylum, Strike, Diabolus, Blood on your hands. - Metal_Treasure

17 Overkill Overkill Overkill is an American thrash metal band, formed in 1980 in New Jersey. They have gone through many line-up changes, with singer Bobby "Blitz" Ellsworth and bassist D.D.
18 Bloodbath Bloodbath Bloodbath is a Swedish death metal supergroup from Stockholm, formed in 1998. The band has released four full-length albums, two EPs and two DVDs depicting their performances at Wacken Open Air and Bloodstock Open Air.
19 Exodus Exodus Exodus is an American thrash metal band formed in 1979 in Richmond, California. Spanning a career of 37 years, Exodus has gone through numerous lineup changes, two extended hiatuses, and the deaths of two former band members.

Gary Holt is the master of thrash metal riffing

20 Immolation Immolation
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List StatsUpdated 25 Jun 2017

25 listings
1 year, 344 days old

Top Remixes (4)

1. Pantera
2. Slayer
3. Iron Maiden
htoutlaws2012
1. Megadeth
2. Slayer
3. Black Sabbath
NjakDjak
1. Annihilator
2. Pantera
3. Metallica
Metal_Treasure

WRemix
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