• Black Stone Cherry - KENTUCKY

    Image: Black Stone Cherry, Kentucky Black Stone Cherry


    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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    Image: Zakk Wylde, Book Of Shadows II Zakk Wylde


    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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Image: Voodoo Brother, Pitriff, news, reviews, interviews, heavy metalVoodoo Brother

While I'm sure most of you are going "who?", this is one release that I've been anticipating for well over a year.  From the ashes of the band, and this site's namesake, PiT, guitarist Jim Lavender and bassist Curt Briscar have found new members, a new musical vision, and have finally resurfaced as Voodoo Brother.

To say the least, Voodoo Brother is a far cry from what these guys have done previously.  So much so in fact, that Lavender no longer uses his former stage name of Joe Campo.  He fooled me!  Voodoo Brother is like a collaboration of the known and the unknown; like if Down shared a tour bus with the late, great Agatha Crawl.  

Their brand of powerful stoner-esque rock is actually more metal like a band like Down or Corrosion Of Conformity, but with a slightly more disciplined, tight sound throughout VOODOO BROTHER.  That said though, the appeal to this band is their vocalist, Johanathan Viceroy.  Viceroy reminds me a lot of Agatha Crawl vocalist Darryl Svitak from a decade ago when they released their INSOLENCE album nationally.  The difference though is that Viceroy is a bit more bombastic and unpredictable than Svitak ever was.  Listening to songs like "Love", Viceroy's voice shifts back and forth between low tone singing and absolutely bombastic bursts of painful aggression.  This is not during changes from bridges to choruses, but at somewhat random moments throughout the song.  He's a truly gifted vocalist, although my hunch is he's someone difficult to control.  Still, this bubbling rage is as appealing as anything coming out today.

As for the rest of the band, they are solid as can be.  Lavender's name changed didn't change his ability to kick ass on guitar.  His tone on songs like "Let Me Grow" are fat like an arena rock band, but fuzzed up enough to make any Kyuss fan applaud in appreciation.  Drummer Dino Velvet has captured a big sound as well.   He's an extremely hard hitter, which makes itself very apparent on "Let Me Grow" where he hits his tom like a drunk janitor would his wife who didn't have dinner on the table on time.  As for Briscar, he still gets more mileage out of 4 strings and 1 finger than any bass player in the game!

PITRIFF RATING - 90/100 - They lose points for the cover "art", but ultimately this EP does it's job in making me want to hear more.  Voodoo Brother have created a solid collection of songs that are appealing to any fan of bands like Down, COC, Queens of The Stone Age, Wilson, etc.  That's a good sound to have!

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.


Buy Now:  Paperback    Digital

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

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

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