The Riffhard World Cup: Who’s In?

Without further ado, here are the qualifiers for the Riffhard World Cup. For a summary of the rules click here.

Keith Richards Group

– Jumpin’ Jack Flash

– Satisfaction

– Happy

– Honky Tonk Woman

the 90s Group

– Come As You Are (Nirvana)

– Killing in the Name of (Rage Against the Machine)

– Chalkdust Torture (Phish)

– Enter Sandman (Metallica)

The Hendrix Group

– 3rd Stone From the Sun

– Purple Haze

– Machine Gun

– If 6 Were 9

the 80s Group

– Sharp Dressed Man (ZZ Top)

– Texas Flood (SRV)

– 1999 (Prince)

– Crosseyed & Painless (Talking Heads)

the Led Zeppelin Group

– Good Times, Bad Times

– Immigrant Song

– The Crunge

– Dazed & Confused

the Funky Soul Group

– Sex Machine (James Brown)

– Soul Man (Sam & Dave)

– Just Kissed My Baby (the Meters)

– Beat It (MJ)

the 1960s Group

– Day Tripper (the Beatles)

– Sunshine of Your Love (Cream)

– Tired of Waiting for You (the Kinks)

– My Generation (the Who)

the 1970s Group

– Cocaine (Eric Clapton)

– Midnight Rider (the Allman Brothers)

– Sultans of Swing (Dire Straits)

– Everybody Knows this is Nowhere (Neil Young)

Surprises? Songs I totally screwed over? Let me know what you think in the comments. Keef and the 90s start pool play on Friday. Who’ll get their satisfaction?




Filed under China, Music

4 responses to “The Riffhard World Cup: Who’s In?

  1. Joshua

    It would have been an outrage if you had left Killing in the Name Of off of the 90’s list. Thankfully, you didn’t, and I can go on reading this post.

    Next I was going to call you out for leaving California Über Alles off the 80’s list, then discovered it was released in ’79, but then re-recorded and re-released for the Dead Kennedys first album in ’80. So, who knows where it belongs, and it didn’t have the mainstream impact of most of the stuff you have listed up there… then again, I think lists are always about mixing up familiarity with some choices that go out on a limb. My case for this riff: heard it once one the tapedeck of my buddy’s Ford Maverick in high school, made him play it over for me at least 5 more times on the way home, and have never gotten it out of my head since. It seems to have sucken into the collective psyche over time, too, popping up in video game and movie soundtracks from time to time.

    You could have gotten more off the beaten track with Hendrix as well. What about Izabella (syncopated, freaky, habit-forming)? I get how it’s not a riff for everyone, but it’s another one that is stuck in my head, so it would definitely be one of my personal riff-wars finalists.

    Overall, it seems to me you’ve tended towards the center, things that everyone can easily digest, and I’d rather see Not There’s more quirky and personalized version of riffs for the ages.

  2. These are your final choices? Dude, I can hear the sound coming out of your echo chamber from here. Get off your musical high horse and take another look at your choices. I’ve never even heard of half of this shit!

    Look, I love and respect you for your vast wealth of musical knowledge, but there are a some things about this setup I just have to take issue with:

    * The fact that you don’t even have a country category speaks volumes about your musical elitism. What about Buck Owens? Kenny Chesney? I demand to see Garth Brooks on this list.

    * I’m not even gonna touch Zeppelin because it’s just gonna make me mad.

    * Including MJ’s “Beat It” in the funk/soul bracket does not preclude you from putting a Van Halen tune in the 80s bracket (Jaime’s Crying or Little Dreamer might be good choices).

    * Hendrix has too many low-hanging fruits so you decided to climb to the top of the tree and grab down a pair of the hardest little bastards you could find: 6 to 9 and Machine Gun.

    * In spite of a mountain of better choices, you just couldn’t let the 90s go without a Phish tune.

    * I know you love the Dead but not one single Dead tune has enough badass riffery to make it to the 70s bracket?

    I think you might want to take another look at the Riffhard World Cup before kick-off this Friday.

  3. Ugh, Jon, I hate that you made me do this. This is 2 hours of my life I’ll never get back.

    * Leaving Funkadelic off this list is criminal.
    Alice in My Fantasies –
    Cosmic Slop –
    Can You Get to That (made even more famous by Sleigh Bells, we’ll get to them later) –
    I’ll Stay –
    You Can’t Miss What You Can’t Measure –

    *No Rick James? Preposterous.
    Love Gun –
    You and I –

    *Okay, moving on. I have to say if you’re going to do a comprehensive riff tournament, you’re going to have to include, for lack of a better term, a Pitchfork Group. Off the top of my head, my votes would be…
    Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Y Control :
    The Rapture – House of Jealous Lovers:
    Two Door Cinema Club – What You Know :
    Sleigh Bells – Crown on the Ground :
    Bloc Party – Helicopter :
    Kings of Leon – Pistol of Fire (I know, Kings of Leon! Aren’t these guys the background music to every shitty teen drama!? Well this is from their “indie darling” stage. Plus check out the fucking Twilight soundtrack then complain about indie groups selling out.) :
    Feel free to add some Arctic Monkeys or The Kooks if you’re into that kinda thing. Shit if you’re really confident in yourself, throw in some Coldplay. Daylight?

    *Moving on, a couple obvious songs you missed. I’m not even going to YouTube these, I’m sure you have them.
    Bowie – Queen Bitch
    Iggy Pop – The Passenger
    White Stripes – Seven Nation Army
    Iron Butterfly – In a Gadda Da Vida
    Deep Purple – Smoke on the Water
    No AC/DC? Okay, buddy.

    Solution. You acknowledge what the obvious template for this tournament should’ve been, happening right now…March Madness. You skipped March Madness for the World Cup? In a non-World Cup Year? Turrible. Go 64, make a real tournament out of this. It’s not too late.

    Gabe out.

    Actually, no. Curtis Mayfield?
    Superfly –
    Freddy’s Dead –
    If Only I were a Child Again –
    Do Do Wap is Strong in Here –
    Stare and Stare –\

    Okay, I’m done.

    Stevie Wonder – Superstition

  4. Gabe, I left out the 00s because I can’t think of a single guitar riff from that era that isn’t ripping off something that came before it. The 00s have been a terrible decade for the guitar, sorry about that. 7 Nation Army is probably the best riff from that era, but like it sounds like a ringtone.

    Also, will you people make up your mind? Am I an elitist or too mainstream.

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