Stryper - The Covering
I know this site is generally a little heavier than I listen too but occasionally, we "cover" the bands that are a little less heavy...
This post will be a work-in-progress so for this moment, let me say that this is the best set of covers I've ever heard. I'll also be outlining what my criteria of a good cover song is and supporting my conclusion along the way.
Until then, please check out some of the tracks. Napster has the album available for download and stryper.com has samples.
More to come...
The first thing I look at is the song list. How does it relate to the band? to me? Does it represent what the band is trying to accomplish? What era are the songs from.
At first listen, I immediately got the impression that Stryper really loved these songs and had a huge impact on their career. Looking deeper, maybe this is why I liked them so much in the 80's... because they had such similar influences. In fact, I'd be surprised if I didn't have a mix tape with all of the songs on it, save the one original tune.
I've listened to the whole album a few times now, some songs more than others (see asterisks for my favorites so far) and it's definitely worth a listen. The representations here are stellar... true to the original with a little Stryper-ization... but not too much; for instance, additional harmonies, duel guitars (where usually only one is present), a slightly different drum beat or guitar riff. The fact is, the guys in Stryper are great musicians, with great taste in music, and they really make these songs fun to listen to.
Below are the songs on the album. I'll be adding commentary on each as I get time. Unfortunately, I've been tasked with a bunch of stuff at work this week so, it will take me a bit longer than I originally hoped. Til next time, as I mentioned above, the songs with the asterisks next to them are in heavy rotation, with Heaven and Hell, Lights Out, and On Fire leading the way.
1. Set Me Free - Sweet**
2. Blackout - Scorpions
3. Heaven and Hell - Black Sabbath***
4. Lights Out - UFO**
5. Carry On My Wayward Son - Kansas
6. Highway Star - Deep Purple
7. Shout It Out Loud - KISS*
8. Over The Mountain - Ozzy*
9. The Trooper - Iron Maiden
10. Breaking The Law - Judas Priest
11. On Fire - Van Halen***
12. Immigrant Song - Led Zeppelin***
13. God - Original Tune
Sorry everyone.... work's been really a treat lately!!
Here's my song by song blurb list. feel free to comment or ask any specific questions.
1. Set Me Free - Sweet** - I can't say that I ever heard the original of this song but, I love it as an opener. Speed, trademark guitars and harmonies abound!!
2. Blackout - Scorpions - This is my least favorite song on the disc. I'd like it better if it weren't for Micheal's Oh-ee-Oh's after he says "Blackout". Otherwise, a good representation of the song.
3. Heaven and Hell - Black Sabbath*** - What can I say. The best non-BS/Dio version I've ever heard. They slow the tempo down of the main part just enough to make you think about it. Then whack you in the head in the ending!! The singing is excellent thourghout and they even have a few nicely place harmonies, which add a nice touch. :rocker:
4. Lights Out - UFO** - When I was growing up, UFO's Strangers In The Night was in my car non-stop. Being from Chicago and hearing Phil go "Lights Out, Lights Out, Chicago!!" always made me feel on top of the world!! That version kicks so much f'n ass that it's hard to live up to it. That being said, Stryper does a great job with the song and consequently is one of my favorites. It rocks!!
5. Carry On My Wayward Son - Kansas - great version; harmonies are great. It's everything you expect, including the song pick. I wasn't surprised by the song and when I saw it I said to myself, that should be good... andit was... nuff said.
6. Highway Star - Deep Purple - same as above. Though coming from Buckcherry's sad-ass cover, this is the cat's ass of covers. lol
7. Shout It Out Loud - KISS* - I'd say same as above for this one too but, it sounds even better than I thought it would; very nicely done!
8. Over The Mountain - Ozzy* - Nice song selection. I like what Oz did to the guitar riff. It almost sounds like he's riding a horse over the mountain.
9. The Trooper - Iron Maiden - Didn't expect this song. They do a great job. This song definitely showcases the skill of both Micheal and Oz. I miss the grittiness of Bruce's voice though.
10. Breaking The Law - Judas Priest - They started doing this song some time in 2009, I think. My guess is that with some of these songs, they wanted to take some people by surprised, and with this track, I'm sure they did.
11. On Fire - Van Halen*** - Unbe-f'n-lievable version!!!!! You gotta here it to believe it! Tied for best song with H&H. :rocker:
12. Immigrant Song - Led Zeppelin*** - same as above but just a notch or two below. I love the muffled intro then BAM! :rocker:
13. God - Original Tune - I really like this song a lot and find myself having it creep into my head every now and again. The harmonies in the chorus are amazing!
I got this album cheap when borders was having their liquidation sale.
I was very much pleasantly surprised by the quality of it (content/agenda notwithstanding -no comment on that). Not every song I liked, but overall I thought it was well made and def worth a listen
if you like cover versions~
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