Two hundred fifty riffs are shredding across America. Buh-chuncka buh-chuncka bah, bah, bah! On beery back streets and dilapidated staircases you might meet them, comparing tattoos and trading tales about the old days. Bome, deh bi da bome! Where do the lost riffs roam? Kirk Hammett wants to know.
Kirk, you see—he wrote those riffs. He wrote them on his guitar, nurturing them from rote pentatonic infancy all the way to graceful and muscular adulthood. Bludgeoning fuzz bombs. Two-hand-tapped solos. Whammy bar dives and heaven-ascending bends. We got hammer-ons, we got pull-offs—boy, oh boy, these riffs were raunchy as hell.
And then he lost them all.
“I put riffs on my iPhone, but something very unfortunate happened to me about six months ago. I lost my iPhone [containing] two hundred and fifty musical ideas. And I was crushed. It didn’t get backed up. And when it happened, I was bummed out for about two or three days. I walked into the house. My wife saw me and she said, ‘Uh-oh, what’s wrong? Did you get a phone call from a relative?’ I said, ‘No.’ She said, ‘What’s going on?’ I told her, and she understood.
“I lost [the phone]. I just plain lost it. I can’t find it. I’m still looking for it to this day. I just set it somewhere and… It still might turn up. I’m hoping it will. To try to remember those riffs…? I can only remember, like, eight of ‘em. So I just chalked it down to maybe it just wasn’t meant to be and I’ll just move forward with it.
The lost riffs were intended for the followup to Metallica’s Death Magnetic, an album that Hammett claims will be “super riffy, super heavy” despite his having lost all the riffs.
Have you seen these riffs? Have you heard them? Do the sing, do they roar? Do they dance with the devil in the pale moonlight? If you come across a power chord at a lonely gas station off a dusty desert highway, or a stray blue note in the swamps of the Mississippi Delta, would you let them know that Kirk misses them? Fear not, my friend. Those lost riffs will come home.
Neener neener, my friend.