• Sweet & Lynch - ONLY TO RISE

    Image: Sweet & Lynch, Only To Rise, CD Review, Classic Metal, Pitriff Sweet & Lynch
    ONLY TO RISE

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    MP3

    Being completely honest here, I really didn't expect a whole lot out of this. I'm not the biggest Stryper fan in the world by a long shot, and the truth is that I just never could fully get into Michael Sweet's vocals. There's just always been something about him. I'm not sure what it is. I guess

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  • AC/DC - ROCK OR BUST

    Image: Rock Or Bust, AC/DC, Chris Akin, Pitriff, Classic Metal, Review AC/DC
    ROCK OR BUST

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    In a year that has see a foundational piece of AC/DC succumb to a debilitating illness and another to his own personal insanity, AC/DC emerges after seemingly forever away with ROCK OR BUST. To be fair and truthfully honest, expectations on this release were pretty low. I know that AC/DC is a band that's been in business almost 50

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  • Whitesnake - BACK TO THE BONE

    Image: Whitesnake, Back To The Bone, Pitriff, Chris Akin Whitesnake
    LIVE IN '84 - BACK TO THE BONE

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    David Coverdale and company have had a very long and successful history that started even before he formed Whitesnake. There's no denying the legacy here. Coverdale has had a fantastic career with Whitesnake, and his time in Deep Purple was every bit as strong to that band as a Sammy Hagar was to Van Halen

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  • Wretch - WARRIORS

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

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    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
    BLOODSTONE & DIAMONDS

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    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
    A TRIBUTE TO MOTLEY CRUE

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    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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Hatecore Inc. - NO HOPE, NO ESCAPE VOL. 1

Image: Hatecore Inc, No Hope, No Escape Vol 1, Pitriff, ReviewHatecore, Inc.
NO HOPE, NO ESCAPE VOL. 1: WELCOME TO MY WAR

CD
MP3

Being from the Cleveland area, I've seen a lot of bands get ignored for whatever reason. On the national side of things, most people look at bands north of Columbus as being from "Cleveland". Unfortunately though, that's not how it works. For as long as I've been in this scene, there were Akron bands and there were Cleveland bands. Even though it's only about a 30 mile drive, they have long been separated. That may not seem like a big deal, but when you factor in the difficulty to get the more quality gigs and exposure from Cleveland vs. Akron, you ended up seeing a lot of bands from Akron that just didn't get the appropriate amount of love on the national level. Looking back a decade or so when both scenes were both thriving, bands like Spawn, Funny, Funnel and NDE all failed to find record deals when they were superior to a good amount of those that did find success at that level. Hatecore Inc. is another that falls into that category.

To be honest about Hatecore Inc, this wasn't their only problem. This local band had more members come through their doors than Whitesnake or Megadeth, which never helps a local band that's trying to build a fanbase that starts with friends who take sides when a member leaves the fold. Still, under the neverending passion of guitarist Kris Dann, Hatecore Inc. has soldiered on. With a new lineup in tow (big surprise there!), they have returned with NO HOPE, NO ESCAPE VOL. 1: WELCOME TO MY WAR. In what is always their way, NO HOPE is an intense listen as you would expect. From start to finish, it's a riff driven, punishing extreme metal hammer to the skull that avoids any and all trappings of metalcore and the more recent emocore nonsense that has severely diluted this genre for the 20-something Hot Topic pussies calling themselves "metal" today. While I think the band does a horrible job classifying what it is they do (they reference bands like Pantera and Megadeth as influences, which I'm simply not hearing at all here), there's a level of viciousness here that needs to be heard to be appreciated. If you are looking for a better comparison, think more of a Napalm Death if they somehow found some melody to go with their brutal assault.

Having heard Hatecore Inc. and it's earlier predecessor N-Factor, it's interesting to see how much the band has grown musically. Guitarist Kris Dann is a fiery guitarist who provides some stark, yet crushing riffs that don't rely on speed as much as tone and tempo. Listening to a song like "Seven", your head gets bobbing as you follow along with the nasty riffs that drive the song. He's countered well by Chef on bass and Troy Hays on drums to create a nasty bottom end for the band. "Isolation" returns reworked a bit from their last release, but is greatly enhanced by better production and somewhat cooler fills provided by Hays. This song could very well be ripped from an early Chimaira recording session, as it has that same feel as some of the more raw stuff they did early on in their career.

Vocally, Daniel Allen steps in and adds his own flavor to the material. He really gives a new vibe to a lot of this music. He's got more range than anyone in Hatecore Inc. has shown in the past, and mixes in the occasional singing part here and there to add diversity to the sound. He works well with a female lead on "My Slave"; an interesting track that definitely features a good amount of Cleveland flavored vibe to it, as well as sowing the most growth this band has shown since their inception.

PITRIFF RATING - 88/100 - Solid effort. They lose some points because a couple of the songs fade a bit hard and almost feel like they were incomplete, but other than that, you've got a seriously enjoyable EP here on your hands to carry you through a half hour of metallic aggression. Definitely worth checking out.

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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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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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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