• 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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  • Sevendust - KILL THE FLAW

    Image: Sevendust, Kill The Flaw Sevendust
    KILL THE FLAW

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    When I first saw Sevendust’s new release was titled KILL THE FLAW, my initial thought was “what exactly is the flaw?” It leads you to wonder just what it is that caused this band to not break big, while bands with lesser quality catalogs like Disturbed or Korn had such crazy amounts of success at the same time. This

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  • Iron Maiden - THE BOOK OF SOULS

    Image: Iron Maiden, The Book of Souls, Review, Classic Metal, Pitriff, Chris Akin Iron Maiden
    THE BOOK OF SOULS

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    They don’t do it that often anymore, but there’s always excitement when Iron Maiden comes out with new music. Knowing that they are closing in on the end of their career, you really do end up hoping that when they go out for good, it will be with a bang. I think it’s universally agreed upon that

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  • Slayer - REPENTLESS

    Image: Slayer, Repentless, Pitriff, Review, Thrash Metal, Chris Akin Slayer
    REPENTLESS

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    Probably more than any release in their history, Slayer came into releasing this album at a crossroads. This WAS the album that, in many ways, dictated if the band could continue on or if it was indeed time to drift off quietly to Hell. The loss of guitarist Jeff Hanneman and the removal of drummer Dave Lombardo had almost every Slayer

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  • Operation: Mindcrime - THE KEY

    Image: Operation Mindcrime, Geoff Tate, Reviews, Music, heavy metal Operation: Mindcrime
    THE KEY

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    Geoff Tate’s falling out and subsequent two years of lawsuits, multiple versions of the same band and overall craziness in the press definitely tarnished a legacy that once seemed untouchable. Think about it. Even with over a decade of arguably bad releases (Q2K, TRIBE, AMERICAN SOLDIER, DEDICATED TO CHAOS), it wasn’t until the now infamous spitting incident and the

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  • W.A.S.P. - GOLGOTHA

    Image: WASP, Golgotha, Blackie Lawless, Pitriff, Review, Heavy Metal W.A.S.P.
    GOLGOTHA

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    W.A.S.P. is one of those bands that has a ridiculously loyal fanbase...and good for them, actually. Doing THE CLASSIC METAL SHOW, we get shit on repeatedly anytime we say anything that is less than glowing about W.A.S.P., Blackie Lawless or any of the band’s former or present members. Oh well...comes with the territory, I guess. After what seems like quite a

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Sabaton, Carolus Rex, Pitriff, news, interviews, reviews, heavy metalSabaton
CAROLUS REX

There's really two kinds of German metal out there.  There's the traditional power metal; stuff like Primal Fear or Scorpions that just kicks your ass with rhythmic playing and powerful vocals.  Then, there's the other variety that sounds like the metal version of a battle at a renaissance faire.  Bands like Blind Guardian come to mind.  This kind of music has an appeal, but you'd better be brilliant if you want to pull it off.  For years, Sabaton has been on the cusp of that greatness.  With CAROLUS REX, they fall far short of not only that standard, but their own standard of excellence as well.

p>In short, the best word to describe CAROLUS REX is boring.  Everything about it is tired; like a boring tribute to their past work.  It's not surprising.  Most of the band has quit or been fired from the band, which calls into question where the creativity was even coming from writing and recording this effort.  It shows.  In many ways, CAROLUS REX runs like a bad tribute to albums like THE ART OF WAR or the brilliant COAT OF ARMS.  Replacing dynamic songsmithing this time are tired attempts to be "triumphant" on songs like "A Lifetime Of War".  This song is the epitome of dull, with vocalist Joakim Broden's deep voice just wearing you out with his false sense of inspired patriotism.  For his part, he sounds decent.  Songs like "1 6 4 8" find Broden roaring about as well as he ever does.

The problem is not Broden, and it's not any of the musicianship to be quite honest.  It's all fine.  The problem is that the songs are just not very good at all.  Song after song, you get dealt a sad shell of this kind of music.  There's so little inspiration in songs like "Carolus Rex" and "The Lion From The North" that you end up bored as you work through the album.  I don't know how else to describe it.  In short, CAROLUS REX just sounds like they went into the studio and wrote songs to sound like other stuff instead of really having any creative juices flowing to create another exciting slab of metal.  There's NOTHING exciting here.

PITRIFF RATING - 35/100 - This is not only boring, but it's also disappointing as Sabaton has become one of the elite bands in this genre.  CAROLUS REX could very well be a misstep considering how much turmoil was going on with the band when it was being written and recorded.  That said though, that doesn't forgive this tepid slab of boredom.  Sabaton missed the mark here.

Chris Akin



Sabaton

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