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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars STRYPER [Murder By Pride]
In 1984, Stryper broke on to the scene with their debut EP Yellow and Black Attack, and have since gone on to sell 8 million albums and tour the world spreading an inspirational message through their branded sound of rock songs, heavy guitars, and pristine harmony vocals. The group's unprecedented 1986 album To Hell with the Devil went platinum and was named one of the...
Published on July 21, 2009 by Kevin Davis

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Stryper...just ok
Hadn't bought a Stryper cd since the 90's. I was a little disappointed.With a band with so much potential,we get a release that has soo little punch. Granted that the first 3 songs are really good,the rest falls apart and comes up empty in the melody and riff area. A little too mellow for my taste,in comparison to their other releases. Let's hope their 2013 release will...
Published on May 21, 2012 by Lhomme fatale


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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars STRYPER [Murder By Pride], July 21, 2009
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
In 1984, Stryper broke on to the scene with their debut EP Yellow and Black Attack, and have since gone on to sell 8 million albums and tour the world spreading an inspirational message through their branded sound of rock songs, heavy guitars, and pristine harmony vocals. The group's unprecedented 1986 album To Hell with the Devil went platinum and was named one of the "100 Greatest Albums in Christian Music" by CCM Magazine.

For me "Murder By Pride" is a great listen, definitely the best album I've heard by STRYPER since "To Hell With The Devil". In fact, having listened to both albums consistently recently, I have to give "Murder By Pride" the top billing as the best overall album by STRYPER. Opening track "Eclipse Of The Son" sets the tone nicely for this very solid album. If you liked 80's metal bands Poison, Guns N Roses and Whitesnake, then you'll be hooked right away by the great dual guitar solos and pulsing and catchy melodies of this entire album. Since those 80's metal bands have all recently attempted comeback albums, I'll also suggest that STRYPER has outdone all of them with "Murder By Pride".

"4 Leaf Clover" might be the signature song from this album. I am very impressed musically by the entire album, and especially by this song. It has a great driving rock beat and Michael Sweet's vocals have never sounded better. In 2008, Michael Sweet joined legendary band BOSTON on vocals and guitar Murder by Pride includes a great cover of the BOSTON song "Peace of Mind" that features BOSTON guitarist Tom Scholz on the recording.

"Alive" is a great ballad in the style of all-time STRYPER great song "Honestly". What's refreshing is that lyrically there is no doubt that the band is Christian as just about every song features a crying out to God, and at the end of "Alive" the painfully honest acknowledgment that God loves us unconditionally regardless of our doubts and loneliness. Michael recently lost his wife to cancer and this song brings out the emotional side of that painful experience. "After recently learning about how precious life is and how often we take for granted the time that we have here on earth, I realized that this tour may very well be the most important tour in the history of Stryper," says Michael Sweet. "Tim, Robert, Tracy, Oz and myself are all stepping out together to show the importance of unity and forgiveness and the only way to show this is to live it. We've been faced with challenges over the past 25 years but two things have remained certain within our hearts and within our lives - the power of God's love and the beauty of God's grace."

"The Plan" and title song "Murder By Pride" are thematically linked based on the concept of dying to the great sin of pride and living in God's will. "Murder By Pride" has a very convicting chorus: "Gotta fight, gotta stop living a lie, Gotta fall, gotta lay down and die, Gotta stand and run to the other side, Gotta live or it's Murder By Pride". The tempo slows down a bit with "I Believe", "Run In You" and "Love Is Why", however the flow is natural and allows you to really reflect on the answer to the questions of self-doubt raised earlier in the album, particularly in "Love Is Why", which includes a bridge based on the words of 1st Corinthians 13:4: "Love is patient, Love is kind". Also, the band's name STRYPER is based Isaiah 53:5 (KJV), "With His Stripes We Are Healed."

Closing songs "Everything" and the re-recording of "My Love (I'll Always Show)" from 1984's Yellow and Black Attack bring back the rock and ends like the album begins with Stryper's trademark blend of melodic vocals, heavy guitar licks and pounding drums.

For me, the standout songs are "4 Leaf Clover", "Peace of Mind", "Alive", "Murder By Pride", "I Believe", "Love Is Why" and "Everything" and I truly believe this is the best overall album by this legendary band.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best new album by an 80's band, August 1, 2009
By 
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
Stryper is rockin', I believe, better than ever. This release didn't have to grow on me, it engulfed me from the very start. It's really incredible. The album is a solid collection of hard rockin tunes. Not a filler among them. So many of the 80's metal groups have come out with new albums trying to capture the glory of days gone by. For the most part, they have done a decent job. Never quite reaching what they once had, but good efforts all around. Then we have Strypers album. Not only do they capture it, they surpass it. This album is far and above their best. When Michael said he listened to what the fans wanted, he truly did listen. It wasn't the typical self promoting hype that all bands spew. The guitars are everywhere. And his voice - Unbelievable!!! He's still hitting those high notes with ease. And isn't that what we long for? Bands from the past to reemerge today with relevance, yet keeping true to the sound that made us fans in the first place? We've had GnR, White Lion, Great White, Def Leppard, Europe, House of Lords, etc release some great and not so great releases. I love Europe's Secret Society, Def Lep's Sparkle Lounge, and House of Lords World Upside Down. They are all wicked awesome. I just think that Murder By Pride delivers a notch better. And I mean that without any malice toward the other bands. I love them all. But Stryper has more than delivered on the hype. I guess you either hate them or love them. If you were a fan back in the 80's, you will love Murder By Pride.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SOLDIERS STILL IN COMMAND, July 21, 2009
By 
Kevin Dobbs "dragonboots" (Perth Western Australia) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
Being a huge fan of the 2005 comeback album "Reborn" and all of Stryper's earlier work I was excited to know another release was imminent. The band is celebrating 25 years with this release, so where does it sit alongside the legacy. Early listens suggest this is a sweet (no pun intended) blend of "Reborn" (the continued development in the song writing department) and "Soldiers Under Command" (the guitar work) which at times is from the 80's flash handbook. The band is tight and very focused. Opener "Eclipse of the Son" is almost punk in its approach, then the big harmonies drop in and you know it's simply the band rocking out and having a bit of fun. "4 Leaf Clover" arrives next and we are back in business. This one will please those followers from the early days being strictly metallic like those early albums were (albeit with awesome pop rock overtones).

"Peace of Mind" the cover of the Boston classic has been around for a while now and is the same version here as the downloadable one but it's well worth including on an album proper. A great song that was built on Brad Delp's (RIP) multi-layered vocals. Who better to do it proud justice than Michael Sweet? The sentiment of this song is never lost on me; when it feels like everything is getting you down you need to take a deep breath and check what is really important to you in life. Stryper are always the masters of the power ballad. Really I try to resist them every time, but somehow they get under my radar, this time the delightful "Alive" a cello and piano affair with a divine (I know, I know) vocal.

"The Plan" has an urgency and skips along and is capped by some nice flurries from Oz Fox and one of those trademark screams to cap it all off nicely. The title track "Murder By Pride" reminds me of Stryper's answer to "Friday on My Mind" by the Easybeats. I really could hear this on the glorious "To Hell" album as its Stryper at their very best. Raise those fists and chant along, or at least try not too.

"I Believe" blends a stripped acoustic guitar and bass interplay, flooded by smooth harmonies and crunchy electric guitar work in the chorus. A very nice song indeed possibly one of the most complete and mature songs delivered this round. That tradition continues with "Run In You" a meandering delight, successful because sometimes less is more. "Love Is Why" is going to be a favourite, phrasing wise it reminds me a lot of "All For One" from "Against The Law". I love that song so this will be one to enjoy for me.

Back to a heavier groove is "Mercy Over Blame" with a more direct vocal attack and a fierce guitar solo, very much back to the vintage Stryper sound of pre "In God We Trust". Second from last is "Everything" which has a massive hook and wouldn't sound out of place on a Fredriksen Denander release. Stryper can write great catchy metal and I for one don't think they get half the credit they deserve for doing so. Closer "My Love (I'll Always Show)"is a ramped up and restructured kicking version of the song of the same name from "The Yellow and Black Attack". Lyrically the same, musically unrecognisable, indeed for a few spins I didn't twig. But is it a better song as a result, well actually yes.

A very strong album again from the Soldiers Under Command, recommended to old and new fans alike.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A BIG Improvement over "Reborn", July 25, 2009
By 
Dale Young (Princeton, NJ) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
When Stryper re-united and announced plans for a new album in 2005, I couldn't wait for the release of REBORN. I found myself disappointed, however, with the production quality of the album and felt most of the songs were not up to par for one of the best rock/metal bands from the 80s. Enter this second "new" recording and I have 2 words to say: Welcome back. This is the Stryper I've been waiting for! MURDER BY PRIDE is a much better recording than REBORN and highlights several of the things that were missing from that album: mesmerizing guitar solos & guitar licks from Oz Fox, crisper drum-sounds (courtesy of "guest-drummer" Kenny Aronoff - from John Mellencamp's band), and pounding bass (you can actually hear Tracy Ferrie now without having to strain your ears). The thing I probably like best though are Michael Sweet's vocals. From the high piercing screams on some of the harder rock songs (the note he hits on "Four Leaf Clover" just about gives me the chills) to the sheer power of his voice on "I Believe" to the haunting tones of the rock-ballad "Alive," this album show-cases Michael's astounding vocal talents. Out of the 12 songs on this album, the only mediocre one is "Mercy Over Blame" (musically, it's quite repetitive and lacks the "punch" that the other songs have). "4-Leaf Clover" and "Murder by Pride" are among the best hard-rock songs ever recorded by Stryper, and the rest of the songs leave you wanting very little. I also like the fact that Stryper stretched out with some different sounds this time around. The piano/acoustic guitar sounds on "Alive" and "Run in You" sound really good, and the cover of Boston's "Peace of Mind" is an amazing combination of retro guitar-sounds, great vocal harmonies & alternating 1/3 and 2/4 drum-timing. "Run in You" has one of the catchiest pop/rock choruses I've heard in recent memory, and musically it sounds like something off of U2's album, HOW TO DISMANTLE AN ATOMIC BOMB. While MURDER BY PRIDE is, in many ways, a return to the strengths of their 80s material, the ironic thing is that it sounds more modern than REBORN. REBORN felt like it was Stryper trying to sound modern, whereas this album feels like it's Stryper just being themselves, but progressed like you would expect a great band to progress over time. Oh, one more thing - when I was listening to some of the songs I kept thinking, "This sounds like something I've heard before" (the background vocals, specifically). Maybe it's just me, but I swear some of the multi-layered harmonies on these songs sound a lot like Queen. All in all, this is a really good rock album. Hopefully a sign of more great Stryper music to come.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Stryper album ever released, July 23, 2009
By 
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
I'll admit it...I'm biased. I'm a huge Stryper fan, dating back to 1987 or so. I don't need all that history with the band to know that Murder By Pride is a FANTASTIC album.

As other reviewers have stated, many 80's bands have made new albums last year and this year. A few were very good (Whitesnake's Good To Be Bad and King's X XV come to mind), and a few were very bad (Dokken's Lightning Strikes Again and White Lion's Return of the Pride come to mind). Stryper does out do them all with Murder By Pride!

This album is awesome on all levels. The musicianship is superb. The mix sounds phenomenal. The lyrics are great. It is just a great album.

When you hear the name Stryper and think of the yellow and black bumble bees in spandex, and you let that keep you from buying this album, you are missing out on some great hard rock. These guys are veteran rockers of 25 years, and this album highlights that maturity.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome!!!, July 22, 2009
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
This CD rocks from start to finish!!!

Stryper's new material is heavier than ever.
Awesome guitars, awesome vocals, and the cover of Boston's Peace of Mind rocks!!! And it includes 2 members of Boston on it, as Michael Sweet of Stryper is now the new lead singer of Boston as well, and Tom Scholz is awesome on guitar. Stryper is famous for dual guitars, but this song has 3 with Tom's addition.

A must for any Rock / Metal fan!
Get this CD!!! You won't be disappointed!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW!!, July 21, 2009
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
Easily the best album by ANY band from the heyday of the hair bands that has tried to make a come back or just keep it rolling. The most notable in recent years has been the work of Bon Jovi. This blows any and ALL of that away. Simply put - this album rocks with precision, talent and skill not seen often in the world of studio corrected, sampled and contrived "artistry". If you haven't bought it - buy it now. You won't regret it.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This will be the best rock album of the year, July 31, 2009
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
I am not a huge Stryper fan, nor a fan of Christian metal. When I saw this record at a ZIA record exchange, I figured I didn't have much to lose. WOW! This record will EASILY be the best release by any of the 80's bands. The musical quality is excellent, the riffs are crisp and the music is relevant to the current era. While Stryper had many fans in the 80's, it also was the punchline of a lot of jokes as "posers", etc. I will tell you what, in this record, here today, Stryper is handing pretty much all 80's bands their shorts. I think it's admirable whenever these bands continue to make music, but I never expected them to make really good music. This is really good music, and hopefully a couple other good records later this summer, and this genre of music will once again gain prominence, as music in general has no direction right now, and there is not much good music being created. This is a MUST HAVE for any serious fan of music, rock n roll, or metal. If you are a student of music, you CANNOT miss this record. Not only is it great listening, but if you study music, you can mail Stryper a check for taking you to school.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! Better than Reborn and closer to traditional Stryper, July 26, 2009
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
As a longtime Stryper fan I like to listen to their last CD Reborn every now & then (a few good songs) but overall it was tough to get used to. The main problem was the music was dark & heavy but also too slow at the same time. To Hell with the Devil was somewhat dark but still had the energy most Stryper CDs have.

Now put in the NEW Stryper CD, Murder by Pride and go right to the title track. You can tell that it's Stryper by the sound of Oz's guitars and the harmonizing vocals. It's not quite as energetic as the older CDs but it's a different time & they are older guys. My wife has never liked Stryper but even she thinks this song is catchy! It could be a radio rock hit except most stations won't play it....you could bug 'em about it though!

I think it would be great for Stryper to revive some of the better Michael Sweet solo songs like Save Me & Blue Bleeds Through and make Stryper versions out of them.

Other good tracks for repeat listening are 4 Leaf Clover & I believe.

This CD is a great 25th Anniversary release and a reason to get excited about Stryper again! Buy it and crank it up :-)

Noah
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Returning some classic elements to the Stryper sound!, July 21, 2009
By 
T. Matteson (PA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Murder By Pride (Audio CD)
A good to great album in my opinion. I like it better than Reborn, but I was of the opinion that Reborn was pretty good too. This is more melodic. The return of real guitar solos is a noticable improvement and the leads here are terrific. A few of them really smoke!

The one thing that really jumped out to me was how much of the bass I hear. The seemed to write these songs with the idea of hearing much more of the bass guitar. Tracy lays down some serious grooves on this album.

The one complaint I have about modern Stryper is the lack of hooks. They still have the traditional song structures, and have nice choruses, but I have a hard time singing along with them because Michael is singing most of them alone and they feature many words, instead of the hooks like back in the 80's that you could easily sing along to. That didn't improve from Reborn on this.

There are elements of the old Stryper and the Reborn album on this new record. Its still modern-era Stryper, but they've added some of the elements of the old Stryper back into the music, and this old fan of the band couldn't be happier.
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Murder By Pride
Murder By Pride by Stryper (Audio CD - 2009)
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