Show Review: Stryper, Lancaster, PA – Chameleon Club May 21, 2019
Metal legends Stryper brought their History Tour to beautiful Lancaster, Pennsylvania last night (21st) at the esteemed and historic Chameleon Club. The multi-tiered club was packed on a Tuesday night and Stryper’s three plus decade legacy brought out folks from all across Central Pennsylvania. They were treated to another amazing Stryper performance.
It’s hard to believe that Stryper have been recording and performing metal music since 1983, but here we are. And what’s fascinating is that Stryper don’t seem to actually age. In fact, as we reviewed their latest record, God Damn Evil, is, perhaps, one of their very best in a very distinguished catalog. While Stryper is working on a new record (yes!!), they are currently touring the U.S. on their History Tour which details the band’s roots and early experiences.
I wouldn’t exactly classify Stryper’s song selection as a “greatest hits” tour, because they would have to play a couple of nights to really be able to pull that off. However, they certainly did pull out lots of old favorites including, “To Hell With the Devil,” the mesmerizing “Yahweh” – which got the crowd’s arms up in the air – “In God We Trust” and “Soldiers Under Command.” It was truly a memorable experience being able to listen to some of my favorite Stryper songs from my youth.
Of course, the band played a number of other classics including the MTV hits, “Calling on You,” and “Always There for You.” Those two alone are worth the $20 to see the show. No filler in this set at all. Not even close.
In addition to Stryper originals, the band did some amazing covers of their favorite songs from their early years including, “Panama” by Van Halen, “Crazy Train,” by Ozzy Osbourne and “Shout It Out Loud,” by KISS. And with newcomer bassist Perry Richardson in tow, they even did a Firehouse (Perry’s earlier metal band) cut with “All She Wrote,” which had the entire venue singing along. Of course, pretty much everyone in attendance was signing every lyric of every song whether it was a Stryper one or not.
What’s amazing about Michael Sweet and Stryper is their sound and professionalism. Sweet made sure that he acknowledged and looked at everyone in the crowd, even the people in the awkward alcove behind the stage on the first deck. He filled the room with positivity and showmanship. It feels like Sweet personally connects with you no matter where you are in the room. Additionally, thanks to Sweet’s secret Olive Oil (which he drank on stage), he was able to hit all the notes without fail. In fact, if I didn’t see him coughing a bit backstage, I’d have no idea he had a slight cold.
Stryper is a band that is firing on all cylinders. And make no mistake, this is a METAL band. They are certainly a Christian metal band (Oz Foxx handed me a bible) but you don’t have to be Christian to love them. And certainly non-metal listeners are able to appreciate them. While their sound is heavy, they are very much accessible.
Go see heavy metal History!
Tour dates for the History Tour can be found here.