Stryper Concert Review (10/26/16 in Denver, CO)

October 27, 2016

Stryper brought their 30th Anniversary To Hell With The Devil tour to Denver's Summit Music Hall on Wednesday night (October 26) and I was very lucky to catch the show at all! As a die-hard Chicago Cubs fan, I was preoccupied watching the Cubbies win Game 2 of the World Series. By the time I made it to the Summit box office, it was already closed. Thankfully, the event staff let me walk in the front door with no questions asked.

THE BAND
Dressed in their vintage yellow and black costumes (with slight alterations), it was a major flashback to seeing Stryper at the Paramount Theater and Red Rocks in 1986. Michael Sweet sounded fantastic, but he was battling a cold and frequently grabbed tissues on stage. "My nose is running like a faucet! I don't think I've ever blown my nose on stage before," Sweet admitted. There were some major technical issues throughout the show with microphones and monitors not working, but a patient Sweet kept the show moving while bassist Tim Gaines threw out bibles to fans. Props to Oz Fox for nailing the "Surrender" guitar solo note-for-note off Soldiers Under Command. And "Visual Timekeeper" Robert Sweet was on point all night long behind the kit.

THE CROWD
The place was packed, but I couldn't help but notice how quiet and reserved everyone was. There was nice applause after each tune, but nobody was really into the show based on the faces I was looking at. No fist pumping, no headbanging, no heavy drinking. It was a Wednesday night, so I get it...

THE SHOW
Obviously Stryper performed 1986's To Hell With The Devil front-to-back, but they returned to the stage after an "Italian shower" to perform a killer version of "Yahweh" off the new album and some older personal favorites like "Caught In The Middle" and "Surrender". They threw in a few covers (Black Sabbath, Van Halen) as well as a "modernized version" of "In God We Trust" from 1988. My favorite songs were the "Side 2" tracks off THWTD, many of which fans have never heard live before. ( wasn't in a good position to film any video, but I've posted the "Loud N' Clear" video from Stryper's 2014 Denver show (below) so you can hear how great they still sound.

STRYPER SET LIST
To Hell With The Devil
Calling On You
Free
Honestly
The Way
Sing-Along Song
Holding On
Rockin' The World
All Of Me
More Than A Man
The Battle Hymn Of The Republic (over the PA)
Yahweh
In God We Trust
Heaven And Hell (Black Sabbath cover)
God
Revelation
Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love (Van Halen cover)
Caught In The Middle
Surrender
Soldiers Under Command

ENCORE
C'Mon Rock