Power of Metal.dk Review

Live at the Whisky
Style: White Metal
Release date: 19 September, 2014
Playing time: 73:35

I remember that the last live album I reviewed was also recorded at the iconic Whisky-A-Go-Go in Hollywood, U.S.A., a venue only slightly more North from Orange, Stryper’s county of origin. Almost a home crowd, therefore.

One thing I tried to envisage when listening to this album was how someone unfamiliar with Stryper might react. Eventually I concluded that the album’s audio recording (there’s also a DVD version, which I haven’t seen) is not going to gain many new fans. Something for the loyal fan, therefore? Well, being in possession of all Stryper’s albums, I might be able to spare a few words on that.....

Roughly the first half of the album is decent but verging on boring. The songs’ live renditions don’t offer any interesting alternative to their studio albums of origin (‘Loud and Clear’ being one possible exception). Michael Sweet’s voice seems to be in reasonably good form even if songs such as ‘Calling On You’, ‘More Than a Man’ and ‘To Hell with the Devil’ were written when he sang much further at the upper range. I couldn’t help smiling at the introduction of ‘Always There For You’ when he tells the crowd “You’ve got better voices than we have, that’s for sure.” Incidentally, there’s a excellent level of band/crowd rapport throughout “Live At The Whisky”.

Then, around half-way through the album, Stryper play the title-track of the “No More Hell To Pay” album, which was released mere days before this gig took place. And I have to say that Stryper do an excellent job of it. Not only that, but from that point onwards the album takes a turn for the better. When Stryper belt out classics such as ‘To Hell With The Devil’ and ‘Soldiers Under Command’ I remember why I’ve been following this band for so many years.

With respect to their studio versions, some songs are given a slightly different edge. For example ‘The Way’ sounds heavier and ‘Soldiers Under Command’ has an excellent vocals only intro.

So “Live at the Whisky” (audio CD) has its moments but to be honest I’m still inclined to stick to my studio album collection.

See the album trailer:

01. Legacy
02. Marching Into Battle
03. You Know What To Do
04. Loud N' Clear
05. Reach Out
06. Calling On You
07. Free
08. More Than A Man
09. The Rock That Makes Me Roll
10. No More Hell To Pay
11. Jesus Is Just Alright
12. Always There For You
13. All For One
14. The Way
15. To Hell With The Devil
16. Soldiers Under Command
Label: Frontiers Records
Distribution: Target (Denmark)
Reviewed by: Chris Galea
Date: 1 October, 2014
Website: www.linktotheband.com