One thing is beyond any doubt and that is Michael Sweet’s unprecedented productivity in the last 3-4 years. Just take a pen and note down what he has come up with since 2013: four albums with Stryper, a collaboration with George Lynch, two solo albums and one autobiography! Impressive or what? It’s like he’s on a mission to cover the lost time but the most important –and if you ask me, the most spectacular- thing is that he has managed to regain his credibility as an artist due to the sheer brilliance of all his qualitative endeavors. And “One Sided War” is not the exception to that rule!
Having beside him Joel Hoekstra (Whitesnake), Ethan Brosh (Angels of Babylon), Will Hunt (Evanescence) & John O’ Boyle, Sweet delivers his heaviest album to date. It seems that at times you think that you listen to a pure 80s metal album (in the vein of Dio and Saxon) that has been refined through the Van Halen sonic crucible. Michael Sweet’s voice is flawless, the production is modern (yet cleverly structured in such a way as to set out an old school vibe) and all the songs are really really catchy!
The top moment of the album is the unbelievable track “Can’t Take This Life”, the chorus of which is so reminiscent of Erik Martensson’s style while the powerful “Only You” and the ballad “Who Am I” complete the puzzle of the highlights of “One Sided War”.
I truly believe that the Michael Sweet’s overall presence in the last few years has added a great deal in restoring the faith to the Stryper name. “One Sided War” is yet another proof…
Highlight: there are two versions of “Can’t Take This Life” on the album. The second one is a duet of Michael Sweet and the 16-year old (!) Moriah Formica.