• Wretch - WARRIORS

    Image: Wretch, Warriors, Review, Power Metal, Chris Akin, Pitriff Wretch


    There's an unwritten rule that I rarely follow here in Cleveland. That rule is that if a band is from Cleveland, I'm supposed to write all glowing things or else be called a hater by the local community. It's sad that it's like that, but the truth is what it is. For years I've lived with that stigma, to the point

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  • Machine Head - BLOODSTONE & DIAMONDS

    Image: Machine Head, Bloodstone & Diamonds, Pitriff, Review, Thrash Metal Machine Head


    What happened to Machine Head really is a crime. Unfortunately for them, it's a crime they perpetrated upon themselves. With a mistake so many made in their youth, this band singlehandedly torpedoed themselves from ascending to the heights in metal held by only the select few like Metallica and Megadeth before them. After THE MORE THINGS CHANGE came

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  • Nashville Outlaws - TRIBUTE TO MOTLEY CRUE

    Image: Nashville Outlaws, Motley Crue Tribute Nashville Outlaws


    With the music industry pretty much dead anymore, nothing really comes off as shocking. After all, you have very desperate companies trying to hang on and make money from an industry that has about as much relevance today as the typewriter ribbon makers of the world still do. The current trend for the last half decade

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  • Texas Hippie Coalition - RIDE ON

    Image: Texas Hippie Coalition, Ride On, Heavy Metal, Hard Rock, Review, Classic Metal Texas Hippie Coalition


    I tell this story often, but it's one of my favorites of the past year. I had the chance to interview the Texas Hippie Coalition earlier this year at Rock On The Range in Columbus, Ohio. I was in a small tent with a bunch of photographers. The tent was fairly quiet really, as the much bigger adjacent

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  • Sammy Hagar - LITE ROAST

    Image: Sammy Hagar, Lite Roast, NonMetal, Review Sammy Hagar


    I get it. You are Sammy Hagar. You've seen huge success in virtually every world you've entered. In music, he was the main focus of Montrose. He parlayed that into a very successful solo career. That wasn't enough, so he joined the world's largest band at the time (Van Halen), and took them to commercial heights that even they

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  • Cavalera Conspiracy - PANDEMONIUM

    Image: Cavalera Conspiracy, Pandemonium, Pitriff, Death Metal, Review Cavalera Conspiracy


    There's always good news and bad news whenever Max Cavalera gets busy with new music. The good is that you get a whole lot of new music, seemingly all in a very short time. The bad news is it's generally spotty at best, because he simply writes and releases too much music at the same time. His band Soulfly released

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  • Slipknot - .5 THE GRAY MATTER

    Image: Slipknot, .5 The Gray Matter, Pitriff, CD Review, Modern Metal Slipknot


    With a ton of speculation and even more wonderment on this band's ability to continue on without founding members Paul Gray and Joey Jordison, Slipknot has returned after far too long of a layoff with .5 THE GRAY MATTER. I've listened to this release multiple times a day for the last week or so that I've had it,

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Image: Saxon, Sacrifice, Heavy Metal News, Reviews, InterviewsSaxon

There's just a feeling of anticipation for the majestic when you hear that a new Saxon release is forthcoming. You know each and every time that these English rockers are going to deliver something that just sounds big, triumphant and awesome. Sure, they have had their albums that weren't that good. But overall, they are one of those bands who's disappointing albums are not so bad that you would ever write them off completely.

With SACRIFICE, I've had many of my harder core Saxon fan friends say it's the best album since Graham Oliver and Steve Dawson exited the band years ago. I definitely don't agree with that assessment, although there's no denying that SACRIFICE is a fine album from these Brits. If anything, SACRIFICE is one of the faster albums of the band's most recent career. Having been personally let down by their last album CALL TO ARMS, it's good to see Biff Byford and company rebound with such a strong effort this time around. From the moment the title track kicks the album open, it's clear that you are in for an old fashioned hard rock hellride that is exactly what old school metallers are looking for. Throughout SACRIFICE, it's the fat guitar tones that drive each and every song. While there's nothing amazing or flashy here, guitarists Paul Quinn and Doug Scarlett more than adequately drive songs like "Made In Belfast". As for the previously mentioned Byford, he's not quite the vocalist he used to be, but that's not saying that he's bad at all. On songs like "Guardians Of The Tomb", you can hear a touch of raggedness in his vocals, and yet the structure of the song is such that it works to his favor. The same can be said on "Warriors Of The Road". I know it's probably subtle, but there's been a bit of decline in Byford's vocal presence over the last few releases. That said though, when Byford is bad, he still good. It definitely works here. As always, the bottom end of each and every song is rock solid as well. Drummer Nigel Glockler and bassist Nibbs Carter create a galloping foundation on most of the tracks here. Songs like "Night Of The Wolf" have your head banging as a result of the thunderous underbelly of the song created by Glockler and Carter.

PITRIFF RATING - 80/100 - SACRIFICE is a solid effort from Saxon. It's certainly not the best album they've ever done, and it really doesn't have that "Dallas 1 PM" or "Denim And Leather" moment on it, it's still a rock solid effort that will do nothing to dissuade fans of the band from digging it. I'm a Saxon fan, and I'm happy to have this new infusion of metal into my ears.

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.


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

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