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10 Best Tony Iommi Riffs


Black Sabbath axeman Tony Iommi is the undisputed master of the riff. Check out our picks for Iommi’s 10 Best Riffs in the clip above.

For 45 years, the world has been a greater place thanks to the existence of Black Sabbath. With riff lords like Jimi Hendrix and Ritchie Blackmore already roaming the earth, the guitar was the most prolific instrument in popular music. Then came the birth of heavy metal as Tony Iommi expanded the genre of rock into an entirely new realm.

Both Black Sabbath and Paranoid were released in 1970, securing four spots in this Top 10 list. Iommi is a genius when it came to working with simplicity. Even with main riffs comprised of as little as three notes, he made them untouchable thanks to his exploration of atmosphere. “Black Sabbath” may still be the heaviest song ever written for that very reason.

Iommi evolved as a player on Vol. 4, creating more intricate leads on tracks like “Snowblind.” Sabbath Bloody Sabbath kept that trend going, though Iommi remained to-the-point well into the Dio years. One of the riffs on this list is from as recent as 2009. Can you name it before checking out the video?

Check out the Top 10 Tony Iommi Riffs above!

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