Black Sabbath's 'Symptom of the Universe' voted greatest riff of all time

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Rufus rag, Jul 11, 2018.

  1. Rufus rag

    Rufus rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

  2. California Couple

    California Couple dislike us on facebook

    Newport Beach
    I own it and do not even recall what it sounds like.
  3. Mr. Nastey

    Mr. Nastey Forum Resident

    Great riff, my favorite Sabbath song. So many cool parts.

    This riff/song influenced anybody who came after in metal and thrash.
  4. Erik Tracy

    Erik Tracy Meet me at the Green Dragon for an ale

    San Diego, CA, USA
    I'm humming it now to recall just how good it is.

    Greatest? Certainly up there.
    Duke Fame likes this.
  5. savemenow

    savemenow Forum Resident

    SE Pa
    It is THAT memorable, huh? lol
  6. California Couple

    California Couple dislike us on facebook

    Newport Beach
    For favorite Sabbath riff I would go with Supernaught.
    Horse Brunsby, DJ LX, E() and 8 others like this.
  7. Strummergas

    Strummergas Forum Resident

    Queens, NY
    Wow. I don't even think it's Sabbath's best riff!
  8. davebush

    davebush New Test Leper

    St. Catharines, ON
    patrickd, zphage and Bill Diercks like this.
  9. Rne

    Rne Sufferin' succotash!

  10. Duke Fame

    Duke Fame Forum Resident

    Tampa, FL
    From a metal perspective it's hard to go against any Sabbath riff as greatest of all time. Symptom is a good choice, easily memorable for me.
  11. Mark B.

    Mark B. Forum Resident

    Concord, NC
    This was my first thought as well.
  12. It’s official. Chris Stein stole the second-best metal riff of all time!
  13. dkmonroe

    dkmonroe A completely self-taught idiot

    Oh come on. That's not Black Sabbath's best riff. Very first time I heard it, I thought, "c'mon guys, you can do better than that." I've come to appreciate the song as a whole but that riff is no great shakes. "Hole In The Sky" kicks it to the curb, but even then you've got better riffs on any of the first four albums.
    Mr. H, Man at C&A, Mr.Sean and 6 others like this.
  14. Jerry c.

    Jerry c. Forum Resident

    its a great song. but thats the kind of riff any untalented ***** could come up with
    dkmonroe likes this.
  15. Jerry c.

    Jerry c. Forum Resident

    m-o-r-o-n is forbidden?
    Mr.Sean, hi_watt and Ignatius like this.
  16. Barnabas Collins

    Barnabas Collins Forum Resident

    I love Symptom and I love the riff, but on some level it might not be Iommi's "best" riff. Still, I give credit to them for not choosing something predictable like "Iron Man" or "Paranoid".
  17. hi_watt

    hi_watt Forum Resident

    San Diego, CA
    I love Black Sabbath, as they are in my top ten favorite bands, but Ozzy's Crazy Train may have been a better contender for the greatest riff in Metal Hammer magazine. Symptom of the Universe is great, but there are other songs in their catalog whose riffs are also strong (NIB, Snowblind, Children of the Grave, etc.)
    Doggiedogma likes this.
  18. Holy Diver

    Holy Diver Forum Resident

    For me, one of the greatest.
  19. Rufus rag

    Rufus rag Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Not even close to Sabbath Bloody Sabbath. now that riff just stays on your head.
  20. Erik Tracy

    Erik Tracy Meet me at the Green Dragon for an ale

    San Diego, CA, USA
    If you are implying that Tony is in the same class as a *****, then yes. Cuz that is just wrong.
    500Homeruns likes this.
  21. dylan1974

    dylan1974 Forum Resident

    I agree that it’s influential (although perhaps regrettably considering how many times it was mindlessly aped), I can easily think of 20 Sabbath riffs that are more inventive and interesting.
  22. No kidding. James Hetfield would slot in right on top of that riff without a second thought.

    Also is it just me or is Ozzy the absolute king of sticking the sappiest lyrics atop thundering grooves?

    Dang. Giving it another listen and that ending section is pure Zeppelin. I love 70s hard rock! :D Sabbath, Purple, Zeppelin, Queen (I and II, at least!)...
    Rufus rag likes this.
  23. mmars982

    mmars982 Forum Resident

    Pittsburgh, PA
    I love that song, but huh?

    If we're choosing an extremely simple riff only because of its influence on all other metal/thrash bands that came later, wouldn't Paranoid be the obvious choice?

    If we're picking the actual best riff, I can think of tons of riffs just by Sabbath that are better candidates. Iron Man comes to mind immediately.
    dkmonroe and Doggiedogma like this.
  24. Greenalishi

    Greenalishi Forum Resident

    San Francisco
    Great song. Great riff. I love that Sabbath are getting their due. They were basically dismissed for so much of their career and most of my Sabbath loving life. Even in the 80s they were marginalized in many ways.

    I was in a White Album discussion and the vibe of that album is unique. Just smokey stoney wonderland. Same with Sabbatoge to me. Just a weird record. Symptom with Ozzys screaming and the heavy heavy of Tony so odd and perfect. Great record. Great song. Tony has so many memorable riffs it's really hard to choose.
    MusicNBeer, angelo73 and hi_watt like this.
  25. McWolfred

    McWolfred Well-Known Member

    Liverpool, UK
    It's a constructed article, not a vote at all really. Metal Hammer do these sort of pieces all the time. There's some others in there I've never even heard and I consider myself a fully paid up metalhead.
    Having said that, symptom is awesome!
    angelo73 and hi_watt like this.

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