STRYPER

(UNITED STATES)

EVEN THE DEVIL BELIEVES

(2020)
LABEL:

FRONTIERS RECORDS

GENRE:

MELODIC METAL

TAGS:
80's, High-pitched vocals
"With this "Even The Devil Believes" well anchored in the 80's, Stryper offers one of his most accomplished and balanced works."
LOLOCELTIC (22.12.2020)  
4/5
(0) opinions (0) comment(s)
If Stryper's return to business had not convinced us about its early years, we must admit that since "No More Hell To Pay" (2013), the apostles of Christian metal been releasing albums of high quality. It's nice to see that this return to grace corresponds with the beginning of a cooperation with our compatriot Stan-W Decker who has been providing them with beautiful covers since then. However, after a "God Damn Devil" (2018) perpetuating this new tradition of good taste, worries about the future of the Californian quartet were in order. Admittedly, the busy schedule of a Michael Sweet multiplying solo projects and collaborations was not new. However, it was Oz Fox's health problems that overshadowed the group's future, as he was diagnosed with two brain tumours. Thanks to an operation partially financed by a crowdfunding campaign, the guitarist seems to be in good shape again.

After these anxieties crossed while tightening the elbows, Stryper is back with a new opus entitled "Even The Devil Believes" whose visuals are once again breathtakingly rich. As for its content, it also remains at the level of its predecessors with 11 catchy sermons. While its predecessor gave priority to power, even flirting with thrash on occasion, the newcomer is more like a tribute to the 80"s, the band's heyday. The production is perfectly balanced and pays homage to a rhythm section that Perry Richardson seems to have reinvigorated with a refreshing motivation. As for Michael Sweet, he proves that he can modulate his vocals with talent. Finally, Oz Fox seems to have fully recovered from his health problems and is once again forming a formidable guitar pair with his fellow singer.

Difficult to bring out certain tracks from a varied and coherent ensemble in which a few discreet winks are made to different formations that have shared the lights of success with our favorite preachers. A few tracks hit the throttle with talent with sharp and gleaming riffs. In this section, we'll mention the intro 'Blood From Above' and 'Let Him In' with metallic reflections worthy of Judas Priest. In the same register, 'Divider' is nervous, close to Metallica's works of the great era. As for 'Middle Finger Messiah' and its convoluted chorus, it removes all the last forms of resistance by a surprising rage. Between these fireworks, Stryper is able to slow down the tempo for some heavier pieces such as the epic 'Make Love Great Again' with Sabbath-like accents, or the Dio-worthy single 'Do Unto Others' without cloning the legend. To note finally the very 80's eponymous title and 'Invitation Only' recovered from the sessions of 'Against The Law' (1990), the mid-tempo 'How To Fly' with its discreet tribute to Queen, the ballad 'This I Pray' whose lyrics seem to have been inspired by the trials and tribulations of Oz Fox, and finally the unstoppable and hymnical 'For God & Rock'n'Roll'.

With "Even The Devil Believes", Stryper offers one of his most accomplished and balanced works. Anchored in the 80's, this opus never sinks into melancholy and shows optimism, dynamism and energy while being clearly turned towards the future, all supported by a production worthy of its time. That's enough to make new converts, my brothers!
- Official website

TRACK LISTING:
01. Blood From Above - 3:21
02. Make Love Great Again - 5:53
03. Let Him In - 3:52
04. Do Unto Others - 4:39
05. Even The Devil Believes - 4:35
06. How To Fly - 4:09
07. Divider - 3:30
08. This I Pray - 4:29
09. Invitation Only - 3:32
10. For God & Rock 'n' Roll - 4:06
11. Middle Finger Messiah - 4:21

LINEUP:
Michael Sweet: Chant / Guitares
Oz Fox: Guitares
Perry Richardson: Basse / Choeurs
Robert Sweet: Batterie
Paul Mcnamara: Claviers / Invité
   
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