By all accounts, the 1990s weren’t the strongest time for heavy metal. However, you wouldn’t know it by checking out the 10 Greatest Metal Riffs of the 1990s.

The king of metal riffs in the 1990s was the iconic Dimebag Darrell Abbott. Throughout Pantera’s dominance in the ‘90s, Dimebag compiled one of the strongest catalogues of riffs in metal history. Chunky cuts like “I’m Broken” and “Cowboys From Hell” defined the decade, but arguably no riff had more staying power than “Walk.” Just two chords and a bend… that’s all it took to compose one of metal’s most punishing riffs.

Though metal in the mainstream wasn’t huge in the ‘90s, the extreme underground was as healthy as its ever been. Cannibal Corpse ruled over brutal death metal throughout the decade, giving us the unrelenting “Hammer Smashed Face.” Across the pond, Carcass experienced their definitive years as well, offering a killer riff with “Corporal Jigsore Quandary.”

The golden age of thrash took place in the ‘80s, but Megadeth remained exceptional in the early ‘90s. After all, it’s when they unleashed their magnum opus, “Holy Wars… the Punishment Due.” Another riff that thrives off simplicity, it never fails to get fans moving in the pit.

Check out our picks for the 10 Greatest Metal Riffs of the 1990s in the Loud List above!

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