Yaaay totally cracked it now!
Woke up this morning and could play it 100% with all the correct accents and feeling!!
The Pop’n’Scuff thing did work but not in the way I expected - when I looked at my picking hand - it had “Decided” to pick diagonally across the strings - about 45%. Amazing - such a simple solution - Because I hold the pick up quite high - above halfway on the pick - picking across the strings - there just isn’t enough space to articulate the accents correct - or for the pick to get into the right angle to hit the strings bang on to get a good tone. Also with the diagonal picking the timing is 100% spot on for the riff - no micro hesitation or adjustments needed!
I did find a tiny issue with muting because my palm position has changed it’s a bit tricky to mute whilst doing this - I’m sure once I’m 100% with it, Pick hand will work out how to do this easily for me!
So so so so chuffed with this - it’s been the bane of my guitar world for quite a while!
As a “Double Bonus” I also realized I could finally play the “Arpeggios from hell kind of stuff” - you know a chord shape spread across 2 notes on one string and 1 note on the next(or the reverse 1,2 e.t.c.). Because the diagonal picking essentially gives your more space to escape the strings - Amazing!