• Black Stone Cherry - KENTUCKY

    Image: Black Stone Cherry, Kentucky Black Stone Cherry
    KENTUCKY

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    This collection of southern boys are not the most original band in the world. They’ll never be accused of being the most musically gifted fellas in the world. Certainly, no one will ever listen to them and think, “wow, that’s really cutting edge music”. To the contrary though, release in and release out, the same thought comes to mind

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  • Zakk Wylde - BOOK OF SHADOWS II

    Image: Zakk Wylde, Book Of Shadows II Zakk Wylde
    BOOK OF SHADOWS II

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    Sequels to albums, at least in my listening experience, are generally poor. The two that immediately jump to mind for me are Rob Zombie’s HELLBELLY DELUXE 2 and Meat Loaf’s BAT OUT OF HELL 2. Both releases were pretty lame, and garnered attention solely because they were named after much more historic releases in their creator’s career.

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  • Dream Theater - THE ASTONISHING

    Image: Dream Theater, The Astonishing, Pitriff, Chris Akin Dream Theater
    THE ASTONISHING

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    So, Dream Theater is back with a release that many are calling their most in-depth, and yet polarizing release. Fair enough. With 34 tracks and clocking in at over two hours in length, it’s certainly the most challenging on a listener to fully grasp and comprehend. Along with THE ASTONISHING, you are expected to read the book of lyrics

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  • 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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Image: Kill Devil Hill, pitriff, reviews, news, interviews, heavy metalKill Devil Hill
KILL DEVIL HILL

Kill Devil Hill features guys from three of my favorite metal bands (Black Sabbath, Pantera, Pissing Razors) trying their best to not sound like Black Sabbath, Pantera or Pissing Razors. Try all they want, there's no getting rid of elements they brought to other bands. In short, Kill Devil Hill feels like some sort of musical love child of Black Sabbath and Alice In Chains, only with that thick groove that Pantera built a legacy on.

To be very clear here, I'm not comparing this band to any of their more famous parts. This band is definitely unique as an entity, and outside of the booming sound of drummer Vinny Appice's drums, this is not likely to remind you too much of any of their famous bands. To the contrary, you simply feel the undeniable influence from their past. When you listen to a song like "Hangman", there's no denying the influence of the Alice In Chains album DIRT, and specifically the song "Rooster".

To me, the most interesting part of KILL DEVIL HILL is the vocal work of Dewey Bragg. This guy was a monster on guttural wails throughout WHERE WE COME FROM for his old band Pissing Razors, but is much more clean and moody here. Songs like the heavy Sabbath/Chains song "Gates Of Hell" show Bragg to be a singer of great depth and range.

Bragg is not alone here. Guitarist Mark Savon is the unknown of the group, but actually stands apart from the rest of the band with the sheer weight of his riffs and leads. In short, Savon provides a perfect layer of guitar tension and noise that Bragg ably works from. The music is all anchored by Black Sabbath drummer Vinny Appice and Pantera bassist Rex Brown. Is there any thought that a rhythm section could get much stronger? It's not likely. The thick bottom end commands attention throughout most of the material. Songs like "We're All Gonna Die" feature a monsterous groove for yet another song heavily influenced by the work of Layne Staley and Jerry Cantrell.

PITRIFF RATING - 85/100 - Kill Devil Hill is a strong band that could easily find an audience for the next decade to come. Their self-titled debut is especially strong, which is really not all that surprising when you consider their lineage. Quality metal from some well established metal veterans.

Chris Akin

Image: Cause/Effect Metallica, Chris Akin

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.

CLICK HERE to learn more about CAUSE/EFFECT: METALLICA.

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Image: Little Victories, Book, Chris Akin

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

CLICK HERE to learn more about LITTLE VICTORIES.

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Read Reviews and Excerpts from LITTLE VICTORIES: A TALE OF DIVORCE, DEBAUCHERY AND FINDING HAPPINESS HERE!

Available January 13th in Paperback and Digital Formats on Amazon and iTunes.

 Image: Keel, pitriff, heavy metal, news, reviews, interviews

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