Okay I've got a few 'riff problems.' I play hard rock/metal, but lately:

- the riffs i make up all sound the same (can't explain how!)
- I play at a boring pace, riffs that are too fast again sound unoriginal
- at my band practice, our bassist came up with the main riff in our first song, and he's not that good at bass/guitar at all!
- i tend to use the E and A strings mainly, probably because I don't know that much theory, not using scales that often either (I only know the minor pentatonic/blues scale forms though).
- some riffs sound out of the genre e.g. too punk and rock n roll for my liking, but sometimes they're better!

So if you could suggest anything at all that could give me inspiration with music writing e.g. theory needed?/ playing with drums etc., then i'd really appreciate it. Thanks a lot
Learn your scales.

A lot of good riffs come out of the minor pentatonic shapes... would suggest that you livn it up a bit by using all the strings (perhaps not all at once), using less predictable shapes (ie. 4th/5th/6th intervals) and experimenting with double-stops as well (think Smoke On The Water, but with single-notes thrown in too :P)

EDIT: Funk up the rhythm too - don't go one note per beat, go for creative sounding stuff with triplets. Find the groove!
Last edited by IronfistGuy at Mar 18, 2007,
hey man just listen to different kinds of music, learn a few modes and keep away from the guitar when writing i let the melody come to me then i transpose onto guitar. This is what i did when i was going through the same thing you are now.
use a drop tuning and palm mutings in chordal riffs to add to the chunk

also if you see a type of chord progression (eg 1st-4th-1st-5th (in c major its C-F-C-G) in a lot of music, try and avoid doing it a lot as it makes it sound sorta chlichéd

also a bit of syncopation(accents off the main pulse) never goes wrong

by all accounts im not great with theory either
Quote by Zangetsu 101
Girl (Ned/chav) annoying me on the bus.

Me "Have you ever bled out your arse-hole?"

Her: Facial expression was priceless - "What??! Noo!"

Me: "Well if you want to keep it that way, **** off."

She then turned away and whimpered.