• Megadeth - DYSTOPIA

    Image: Megadeth, Dystopia, Dave Mustaine, David Ellefson, Kiko Loureiro, Chris Adler Megadeth
    DYSTOPIA

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    More than any other metal band in history, being a hardcore Megadeth fan is truly a rollercoaster ride. This is a band with multiple duds in their catalog, and yet they always seem to rebound. Think about it, they’ve truly had some bad releases in their catalog. RISK was terrible. THE WORLD NEEDS A HERO wasn’t a lot better. And yet,

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  • Anthrax - FOR ALL KINGS

    Image: Anthrax, For All Kings, Pitriff, Chris Akin Anthrax
    FOR ALL KINGS

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    Depending on your perspective, Anthrax is either having a career resurgence or floundering at the end of their career. I’m stunned how many people actually didn’t like their last effort, FOR ALL KINGS. In these ears, that was the best effort of their career. What made it great, to me, was the mixture of crushing heaviness combined with some

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  • Sevendust - KILL THE FLAW

    Image: Sevendust, Kill The Flaw Sevendust
    KILL THE FLAW

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    When I first saw Sevendust’s new release was titled KILL THE FLAW, my initial thought was “what exactly is the flaw?” It leads you to wonder just what it is that caused this band to not break big, while bands with lesser quality catalogs like Disturbed or Korn had such crazy amounts of success at the same time. This

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  • Iron Maiden - THE BOOK OF SOULS

    Image: Iron Maiden, The Book of Souls, Review, Classic Metal, Pitriff, Chris Akin Iron Maiden
    THE BOOK OF SOULS

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    They don’t do it that often anymore, but there’s always excitement when Iron Maiden comes out with new music. Knowing that they are closing in on the end of their career, you really do end up hoping that when they go out for good, it will be with a bang. I think it’s universally agreed upon that

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  • Slayer - REPENTLESS

    Image: Slayer, Repentless, Pitriff, Review, Thrash Metal, Chris Akin Slayer
    REPENTLESS

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    Probably more than any release in their history, Slayer came into releasing this album at a crossroads. This WAS the album that, in many ways, dictated if the band could continue on or if it was indeed time to drift off quietly to Hell. The loss of guitarist Jeff Hanneman and the removal of drummer Dave Lombardo had almost every Slayer

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  • Operation: Mindcrime - THE KEY

    Image: Operation Mindcrime, Geoff Tate, Reviews, Music, heavy metal Operation: Mindcrime
    THE KEY

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    Geoff Tate’s falling out and subsequent two years of lawsuits, multiple versions of the same band and overall craziness in the press definitely tarnished a legacy that once seemed untouchable. Think about it. Even with over a decade of arguably bad releases (Q2K, TRIBE, AMERICAN SOLDIER, DEDICATED TO CHAOS), it wasn’t until the now infamous spitting incident and the

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  • W.A.S.P. - GOLGOTHA

    Image: WASP, Golgotha, Blackie Lawless, Pitriff, Review, Heavy Metal W.A.S.P.
    GOLGOTHA

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    W.A.S.P. is one of those bands that has a ridiculously loyal fanbase...and good for them, actually. Doing THE CLASSIC METAL SHOW, we get shit on repeatedly anytime we say anything that is less than glowing about W.A.S.P., Blackie Lawless or any of the band’s former or present members. Oh well...comes with the territory, I guess. After what seems like quite a

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Image: Taproot, The Episodes, news, reviews, interviews, heavy metalTaproot
THE EPISODES

From listening to THE EPISODES from Taproot, I guess it really wasn't that far of a leap for them to go from talented alternative rock band to a more emo flavored version of said talented alternative rock band.  You have to give these Michigan rockers credit for keeping themelves somewhat relevant in the wake of a trendy landscape that has changed markedly since they debuted.

With some elements of emo or post-hardcore or whatever you want to call it mixed into the sound, THE EPISODES certainly is the most diverse album of this band's career.  In some places, that's a good thing.  In others, maybe not so much.  There are songs like "No Surrender" which are interesting and solid.  Then, there are songs like "Memorial Park that are literally a collection of everything that's wrong with modern metal today.  The song sounds like a bad alterna-rock metal track that was meant to be erased in a bad Deftones session throughout parts, meant to be thrown out of some bad screamo session in other areas, and is full of all the "love me" emo crap that plagues the modern generation of rock pussies that don't have enough spine to man up for themselves.  Vocalist Stephen Richards is most responsible for this.  While he's more diverse than on any other Taproot album, it's to the point of overkill throughout.  In short, his vocal changes styles and ranges throughout, but just has a lot less dynamic punch than on past efforts.  His whiny bitch voice he uses on material like "The Everlasting" rivals modern Day Chester Bennington's non-screaming voice...although he's not nearly as strong or emotionally attractive vocally.

Still, there are moments.  While still whiny vocally, "A Golden Grey" is much more of a rocker that could find its way to some commercial radio playlists sitting comfortably next to a new Staind or Nickelback track.  In fact, it's far more interesting than anything either of those bands do.

PITRIFF RATING - 52/100 - Listening to THE EPISODES is akin to riding one of those rollercoasters that a travelling carnival might bring with them.  It seems like a rollercoaster, but the highs aren't too high, it doesn't go nearly as fast as a good rollercoaster, and the drops are far less dramatic.  THE EPISODES won't have you cheering "they're back".  It also won't find you throwing it out your car window because it's so bad.  Bland, dull, average - best three words I can give it.

Chris Akin

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A look at one of the most polarizing, iconic and best selling albums of all time from author, rock critic and shock jock radio host Chris Akin.

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The shockingly honest and emotional first book from radio personality and rock critic Chris Akin.

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