How to play Marilyn Manson - No Reflection riff
This is the first single taken from Marilyn Manson's 2012 album, Born Villain, and it features long-term co-songwriter and ex-bassist Twiggy Ramirez on guitar duties.
For this song, tune your guitar to standard tuning (EADGBE). The track starts with an industrial bass-drum pulse before Twiggy jumps in with the main riff.
This one is all about getting the right amount of attack and attitude. To get the correct sound you'll need to use downstrokes throughout and use the whole of your forearm to swing at the strings. This adds intensity and brings a punk-like quality to the overall sound.
Make sure you pay attention to your fret-hand muting. In some sections your fingers are used to mute the strings and create space, while in others a natural harmonic is deliberately left ringing. This generates a raw and reckless variation to the repeated phrase.
Get the sound
For this song, Twiggy uses a Telecaster with a humbucker in the bridge position, because this is more effective for creating a thick distorted tone.
If your guitar has singlecoil pickups you can thicken your sound by adding some extra bass and gain from the amp. Make sure you set your amp to give a decent amount of midrange, too. This adds the required body and avoids the inappropriate scooped thrash metal sound.