The Yellow and Black Attack has been on an absolute tear over the past couple of years. The band turned a lot of heads with their excellent return-to-form album, NO MORE HELL TO PAY, and then last year they released a ripping live album. For a bunch of guys in their 50’s, the band just keeps going from strength to strength.
For 2015, the band has released yet another new album called FALLEN, and it picks up exactly where NO MORE HELL TO PAY left off. Beginning to end, FALLEN just smokes with the pure heavy metal that made Stryper famous in the ‘80s and they brought back on their previous album. Opening cut “Yahweh” instantly shows the band still plays with fire, has the chops, and the vocals (lead and harmony) to kick ass – and that song’s actually one of my least favorites on the album.
As the album progresses, it becomes evident that age has refined the band’s song writing skills to a fine edge, as the metal is arguably heavier than their glory years and even the ballads (“All Over Again”) are enjoyably more mature than the saccharine hits from yesteryear.
I have to single out Michael Sweet as well. Well into his ‘50s, with this album the man has put forth one of his best and most nuanced vocal performances ever. Hell, he’s downright aggressive on the title cut and “Pride”.
Even better, unlike many albums that peter out towards the end, the last three songs on this twelve-cut record are easily the best, and heaviest songs offered, right up there with the heaviest that Stryper has ever done.
There’s no way around it, FALLEN is a metallic triumph that I’d go so far as to say is one of Stryper’s best.
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