Stryper: Second Coming

Eighties Christian glam re-tooled. God help us.

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The concept of a Christian glam-metal band dressed entirely in black and yellow spandex remains an outré one, and Stryper have not been without their Spinal moments over the years (even their name is deliberately misspelled with the ‘y’ so no-one could confuse it with ‘Stripper’, an altogether less godly conceit), but we should tip our hat to them for hanging in there.

The band have had their share of ridicule, and also their successes, first with the platinum-selling To Hell With The Devil in 1986, and latterly in the Christian market – plus, for singer Michael Sweet, a spell in Tom Scholtz’s Boston.

Here they present 14 re-recordings of tracks from their 80s heyday, plus a couple of new songs. And with a little fizz in the production, their happy, cheesy, melodramatic hair-metal still packs a punch, especially when propelled by Sweet’s extraordinary, multi-octave yodel. That’s at its best on a new To Hell With The Devil, on which he hits notes that could repel Satan himself.

Jon Hotten

Jon Hotten is an English author and journalist. He is best known for the books Muscle: A Writer's Trip Through a Sport with No Boundaries and The Years of the Locust. In June 2015 he published a novel, My Life And The Beautiful Music (Cape), based on his time in LA in the late 80s reporting on the heavy metal scene. He was a contributor to Kerrang! magazine from 1987–92 and currently contributes to Classic Rock. Hotten is the author of the popular cricket blog, The Old Batsman, and since February 2013 is a frequent contributor to The Cordon cricket blog at Cricinfo. His most recent book, Bat, Ball & Field, was published in 2022.