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Stryper – Fallen

Label: Frontiers Records
Format: CD download
Released: 2015
Reviewed By: Rich Catino
Rating: 10/ 10


Following a collection of re-recorded classics called “Second Coming”, and studio album of new material “No More Hell to Pay” in 2013, “Live at the Whisky” (2014), Stryper have become reenergized, inspired, faith driven, and rockin harder than ever. “Fallen” builds on and benefits from all of Stryper’s formula; heavy guitar riffs and complimenting melodic twin leads, pounding bass and drums, and screaming melodic vocals. These twelve songs on “Fallen” could be Stryper’s strongest and most consistent compositions ever. And the production is their best, well balanced and mixed with a strong punchy bottom end, crunch in the guitars, clean full bass, with vocals resting nicely above.

 

This album could be Stryper’s heaviest, ‘Yahweh’ and the title track equal Stryper’s trademarks mastered and sounds like “Soldiers Under Command” meets “To Hell With The Devil” in 2015. And listen to the anger and grit in Michael’s voice on the title track. He’s sharp and clean in projection, while adding a little gravel to his (when needed heavenly) tone. Sweet and Oz Fox also trade off and harmonize with each other the best I have heard since I’d say the best moments from “In God We Trust”. ‘Pride’ keeps the heaviness going, as with Michael’s harder delivery, a bit more contemporary riff and bass line, and reminds me of the underrated album “Against The Law”. ‘Big Screen Lies’ pulls back on the aggression a bit, but keeps the punch hard.

‘Heaven’ feels a little lighter and melodic with the brighter leads while Tim Gains gets a throws in a few funky bass lines throughout. If we were still in the 80s ‘Love You Like I Do’ would have been a great radio single, while ‘All Over Again’ is the lone ballad amongst all the headbanging. ‘After Forever’, yes, the Black Sabbath song, is true to and as metal as the original. Well done, fellas. The remaining four tracks maintain the energy, power, and variety in arrangement felt from the album’s opening four. Stryper continue to prove everyone wrong that they have always been as metal as anyone else, and that they should not be judged and misidentified by those MTV rock radio singles and ballads.

 
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