AC/DC wrote top riff of the 80s says Gibson
AC/DC’s riff for Back in Black has been named as the best of the 1980s by guitar makers Gibson.
Released on of one of the first albums of the decade, the Aussie giants’ trademark phrase has been given number-one spot over the work of the Rolling Stones, Ozzy Osbourne, Scorpions and Def Leppard.
Back in Black was the title track of their first album with frontman Brian Johnson following the death of Bon Scott just five months before its release. The song helped project the record to become the second-biggest selling of all time, after Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, and remains a mainstay of their live set.
Three of the ten chosen riffs saw light of day in 1980, with three also from 1981 and one each from 1982, 1983 and 1984. Only Guns n’Roses Sweet Child O’Mine is listed from the latter half of the decade.
Gibson say: “The phenomenon known as the riff has the power to make a decent song great, and a great song an all-time classic.
“The form really began to flourish in the 60s at the hands of Dave Davies, Pete Townshend, Keith Richards and other predominately British guitar legends.
“The 80s kept the tradition running with guitarists from decades past still flexing their muscles alongside a breed like Slash and Vivian Campbell.”
Of Black in Black they comment: “Brothers Angus and Malcolm Young cooked up some of the greatest riffs of their career on this magnum opus, including You Shook Me All Night Long, Hell’s Bells and Have a Drink on Me – but none is more memorable than the hard and heavy title track.”
Gibson’s top 80 riffs of the 80s
1. AC/DC: Back in Black (1980)
2. Rolling Stones: Start Me Up (1981)
3. Ozzy Osbourne featuring Randy Rhoads: Crazy Train (1980)
4. Scorpions: Rock You Like a Hurricane (1984)
5. Def Leppard: Photograph (1983)
6. Judas Priest: Breaking the Law (1980)
7. Michael Jackson (Steve Lukather): Beat It (1982)
8. The Clash: Should I Stay or Should I Go (1981)
9. Guns n’Roses: Sweet Child o’Mine (1987)
10. Rush: Limelight (1981)