1980’s Flashback: Metal With a Message

I recently downloaded some 1980’s heavy metal for my iPod. That’s right, I was somewhat of a metal head back in the day. To be honest, I still listen to a bit of 80’s metal today. However, I was (and still am) very selective when it came to the metal I listened to. There were certain bands I just avoid because of the messages coming thru in their songs. But, there was one 1980’s metal band (one of my favorites) that was very different. In fact, some viewed them as quite controversial. I’m talking about the band Stryper, a Christian heavy metal band. Yes, you heard me correctly…Christian heavy metal. I know those words typically would not go together, especially in the 1980’s. Much of 80’s metal was known for crude lyrics, and often evil messages. Stryper, whose name came from the King James Version of Isaiah 53:5,

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed

was different. They used what was popular in the 80’s (hair bands and metal) to get the message of Christ across to kids of that decade. While many deemed them as controversial, I saw them (still do) as Christians using their talents to reach kids for Christ. I loved their music then and still listen to it now. I’m really glad God uses all different styles of music to convey His message.

For those of you not familiar with the band, here is a video of a song off their first album, Loud N’ Clear. Metal is sometimes hard to understand, so I’ve included the lyrics below.

[Verse 1] The hair is long and the screams are loud and clear. The clothes are tight, earrings dangling from the ears. No matter how we look, we’ll always praise His name. And, if you believe, you’ve got to do the same.

[Chorus] Loud, clear, let the people hear. Scream, shout, show what it’s all about. Loud, clear, let the people hear. Scream, shout, show what it’s all about.

[Verse 2] Some of us were always pushed around in schools. That’s why I wrote this song to sing to pushin’ fools. At least we can say we love doin’ what we do. And we’re here to say that you can have salvation too.

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