Stryper is back in their 2-year album cycle and this one could really be their ‘best yet’. I know that is mentioned with every release but this one could really live up to that hype this time.
As a Stryper fan myself since 1987, I’ve been glued to their career nearly my entire life, even during the 2000s when I thought I would never hear new Stryper music ever again.
I’m not going to go into the bands history in this post as you can see other reviews that give the general overview of who they are and what they have done over their 37+ year career. Instead, I’m just going to give my impression of each of the tracks as a Stryper mega-fan. But first the basics:
The Final Battle Tracklist:
- See No Evil, Hear No Evil
- Same Old Story
- Heart & Soul
- Out, Up & In
- Rise To The Call
- The Way, The Truth, The Life
- No Rest For Wicked
- Till Death Do Us Part
- Ashes To Ashes
The Final Battle Album Length:
- 46 Minutes 23 Seconds
The Final Battle Line-up:
- Michael Sweet – Lead Vocals, Lead & Rhythm Guitar
- Robert Sweet – Drums & Percussion
- Oz Fox – Lead and Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
- Perry Richardson – Bass, Vocals
Is this the best opening track for any Stryper album? I would have to put it up there in the Top 3. Yahweh is still an epic masterpiece that will be hard to top. I personally have Blood From Above as my favorite opening track of all time but Transgressor may be pushing that out soon just from the opening 15 second scream. Wowza! And to think this was done when Michael has a serious eye issue.
You’ve already seen it but here it is again
See No Evil, Hear No Evil
One of their best slow gallop groovy tracks to date. A great 2nd track to come down a bit after Transgressor.
Same Old Story
Ok, one you haven’t heard yet if you are reading this before Oct 21, 2022. Another slow groove picking up to mid-tempo, chunky, and powerful track. A catchy chorus that will stay with you. Solid mid-paced dual solos.
Heart And Soul
Groovy mid-tempo track. Good harmonies in the chorus, not as catchy as classics like Calling On You or Always There For You. Another solid Stryper tune throughout.
A slower-paced rocker that I feel could fit on the Reborn album. Harmonies and chorus will give goosebumps. Impressive and soothing solo. I much prefer this over their previous slower tunes as of late.
Out, Up & In
Another mid-tempo with a different style to the previous mid-tempo tracks on the album. Its not breaking any barriers on newness or bringing anything new to the table which is fine for a track closing the first half of the album. Another good pleasant solid Stryper tune.
Rise To The Call
One word: Yes!
Ok I’ll go on..I may be pushing buttons here but I think I like this better overall than Transgressor. Dueling solos are nuts and sound perfect in this one. Perfect song for kicking off the second half of the album.
The Way, The Truth, The Life
Another slower to mid-tempo that is a bit quirky compared to the others. Its a groovy song that differentiates itself from the other mid-rockers. As with all the songs on The Final Battle, you know they are Stryper through and through.
No Rest For The Wicked
Ok now here is where the ‘heaviness’ on a slower pace kicks in. The riff just does something to you where you just make that pursed lips face and scrunch your nose and get the head movin’. Excellent solo. There I fit in scrunch in a Stryper review.
Till Death Do Us Part
This mid-tempo track is a bit airier if that makes sense at all. A bit of a happier chorus but still has that heavy groove throughout. I was hoping for another 80s throwback track like Invitation Only in this part of the tracklist but I may be the only one thinking that. Can’t say I’m blown away with this like I was with Invitation Only but yet another solid output on the album.
Ashes To Ashes
A great closing track that brings back the muscle to close things out. Not as experimental as previous closing tracks like Middle Finger Messiah or The Devil Doesn’t Live Here. Chorus will leave you singing it for the rest of the day. Very solid track.
With the album as a whole, I want to agree with Michael this time saying this is their ‘best’ yet. There are of course ‘better’ songs across the catalog but from start to finish, The Final Battle is an enjoyable ride from beginning to end. On previous albums, there are always tracks that I’ll tend to skip over for various reasons. I have not had that ‘problem’ with this one after 10 or so listens, in fact, The Final Battle getting better and better with each pass-through.
There is really nothing new in terms of style, tone, or direction from what I can tell. This is just solid Stryper from start to finish.
I’ll give this a 9.6 out of 10 as a Stryper fan since 87.