• Black Stone Cherry - KENTUCKY

    Image: Black Stone Cherry, Kentucky Black Stone Cherry
    KENTUCKY

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    MP3

    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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    MP3

    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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    MP3

    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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    MP3

    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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    MP3

    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: Sledge Leather, Imagine Me Alive, pitriff, heavy metal, news, reviews, interviewsSledge Leather
IMAGINE ME ALIVE

Sometimes things happen for a reason.  Cult favorites Rude Girl were all set to become a dominant force on the metal scene back in the 80s, and that didn't happen for whatever reason.  It certainly wasn't because they didn't have the talent.  Vocalist Leather Leone was widely regarding as one of the very best heavy metal vocalists of that era - having the rare distinction of being compared favorably to guys like Halford and Dio at the time.  Still, it didn't happen for Rude Girl, and following was some solo work, and then a solid and equally brilliant but unappreciated run as the vocalist of the long underground heroes Chastain.  For whatever reasons, she just up and disappeared and was never heard from again...until recently.

Moved by the death of her friend Ronnie James Dio, Leather Leone re-emerged, teamed up with her old friend and drummer from Rude Girl Sandy Sledge, recorded a cover of Dio's song "Egypt",  and found that they wanted to work together again.  Now, after years and years, they are teamed up as Sledge Leather, and have surfaced with a killer collection of songs called IMAGINE ME ALIVE.  Without question, Leather Leone has still got it.  Her raspy wailing is as strong now as it's ever been, and just as compelling.  Songs like "The Guy Upstairs Lied" simply smoke, with Leone driving the song with her almost Overkill-like vocals on the track.  The song is equally impressive from Sledge on drums with it's hyperspeed pace and combination drumming that, while subtle, switches between singular tom beat and intricate doubles at the transition points of the song.  It's some very, very cool old school metal and as a former drummer, the intricacies of this song are very appealing.  That said though, the rest of the disc is equally interesting.   The title track, "Imagine Me Alive", is a smoker as well, while they stretch out with the mid-tempo rocker "Her Father's Daughter" which leads into the absolutely haunting piano reprise of the same song.  It's cool stuff, from start to finish.

PITRIFF RATING - 86/100 - IMAGINE ME ALIVE is a solid old school record from a new band with a lot of old school history.  It's great to see Sandy Sledge and Leather Leone recording together again.  Hopefully this will be a much longer term project.

Chris Akin



Imagine Me Alive - Sledge Leather

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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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.

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