• Texas Hippie Coalition - RIDE ON

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

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    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
    LITE ROAST

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    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
    PANDEMONIUM

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    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
    .5 THE GRAY MATTER

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    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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  • Opeth - PALE COMMUNION

    Image: Opeth, Pale Communion, Pitriff, Review, Progressive Metal Opeth
    PALE COMMUNION

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    Opeth simply fails as a band, at least to me. While I'll admit to never fully understanding the amazement and awe so many have for this band, I've appreciated them from afar. I've listened, and I've at least wrapped my head around what they were trying to do. Their fusing of death metal with progressive elements always made for an

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  • Cannibal Corpse - A SKELETAL DOMAIN

    Cannibal Corpse, A Skeletal Domain, Review, Death Metal Cannibal Corpse
    A SKELETAL DOMAIN

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    So really, what does anyone expect when you get a Cannibal Corpse release handed to you? Ballads, love songs and fun? Not hardly. There's an expectation of severe brutality which the band delivers time and time again. Certainly, it comes with different levels of acceptance to one's ears, but ultimately the only thing that matters if it says

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  • Exodus - BLOOD IN, BLOOD OUT

    Image: Exodus, Blood In Blood Out, Pitriff, Review, Thrash Metal Exodus
    BLOOD IN, BLOOD OUT

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    Unless you call Testament a "thrash band" (which I don't personally), Exodus would rank as my favorite true Thrash band of all time. They have had good times and bad. Occasionally, like on FABULOUS DISASTER, they have misstepped along the way. But overall, they are one of the true powerhouses in the history of thrash metal. Since 2004

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  • Mr. Big - ...THE STORIES WE COULD TELL

    Mr. Big, The Stories We Could Tell, Reviews, Classic Metal, Chris Akin, Pitriff Mr. Big
    ...THE STORIES WE COULD TELL

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    As a fan of Mr. Big, I can't honestly say that many people thought that their reunion was much more than a cash grab opportunity for the guys in the band who, while immensely talented, failed to find solo success to match their collaborative efforts. It was never a question of if they could still play.

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  • Slash - WORLD ON FIRE

    Image: Slash, Myles Kennedy, Conspirators, World On Fire, Pitriff, review, classic metal Slash
    WORLD ON FIRE

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    Hey Gene Simmons. The corpse of rock n' roll just had a baby. That baby is not an average baby at all. That baby was not stillborn, but came out kicking and screaming with an intensity rarely seen. This baby is destined for greatness. This infant is out to prove you wrong. While your days of spitting fire and

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  • Davey Suicide - WORLDWIDE SUICIDE

    Image: Davey Suicide, Worldwide Suicide, Pitriff, Reviews, Modern Metal Davey Suicide
    WORLDWIDE SUICIDE

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    I had the pleasure of working directly with Davey Suicide as he prepped his debut release a few years ago for release. I got to work with him on some promotional stuff, some publicity stuff, his website and a lot more of that kind of stuff. In that work, I quickly found him to be far more than the

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  • Ministry - LAST TANGLE IN PARIS

    Image: Ministry, Last Tangle In Paris, Pitriff, Review, Industrial Metal Ministry
    LAST TANGLE IN PARIS

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    Al Jourgensen of Ministry has been threatening to take his ball and go home for a long time now. Quite frankly, I'm not sure I believe that he'll ever retire. Every time he says he's retiring, he seems to come right back with more music that's stronger, meaner and just better than anything in his past. Being quite

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Review - Stick To Your Guns DIAMOND

Image: Stick To Your Guns, Diamond, Pitriff, CD ReviewsStick To Your Guns
DIAMOND

For all the hype surrounding the whole “Post Hardcore” scene, there are a collection of up and coming bands that I just don’t get. Stick To Your Guns are one such band. There’s all kinds of hype on this band, but for my money I’ll take the original, Hatebreed, over anything these guys are doing. Listening to DIAMOND, you get a solid dose of their Hatebreed wannabe music with bits of modern vocals thrown in for good measure. To say it’s not working here is an understatement. DIAMOND just isn’t very good.

 

Without question, DIAMOND is a collection of dull songs – plain and simple. I know I keep referencing it, but it really just sounds like bad Hatebreed from a decade ago. Listening to songs like “The Bond”, you can’t help but think they listened to song “Perseverance” over and over again, and tried to write their version of the song. Vocalist Jesse Barnett sounds a lot like Jamey Jasta, and the band fills dead spots in the music with the same gang vocals that Hatebreed uses in their material. Songs like “We Still Believe” have a clean vocal throughout, but that’s even worse than the Jasta worship sound. Coming that with the over the top gang vocals in the chorus make this one an instant skip in my IPod.

Musically, Stick To Your Guns is solid but completely unremarkable on DIAMOND. There’s not a single note on this release – not a drum line, not a guitar riff, not a bass line – that even remotely sticks in your head. After 10 listens to this album, I still can’t pick out a single point where I can say, “the drums on xxxxxx are great” or “the riff on yyyyyyy is unique”. This whole release is dull parody of a genre they aren’t quite good enough to be a part of. That said, I can point to a universally terrible spot. The kids chorus in the song “Ring Loud (Last Hope)” is laughable; a terrible idea. The integration of sound effects is pretty poor as well. It’s not 1985 anymore, and clearly this isn’t a soundtrack to any movie.

PITRIFF RATING – 15/100 - I couldn’t hate this release more if it was accused of child molestation. Stick To Your Guns needs to find their own bullets instead of glomming onto someone else’s sound and doing it poorly. From poorly taking style from Hatebreed and Biohazard, to dull music to ridiculously unnecessary sound clips to try to create any sort of interest in these songs, DIAMOND is a failure.

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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