John L. Cooper “Awake And Alive To Truth” Book Review By Colin Cruz, TheBlast.FM Program Director

Skillet fans: if you haven’t read this yet, you should.  I love Skillet lead singer John L Cooper’s heart.   In his debut book (self-published) he talks about his earliest memories of belief in Christ.   He also talks about how some secular rock industry types were telling him he needed to drop the Jesus talk if he wanted the band to reach his full potential.  But it didn’t take he and his wife Korey long to figure out that that conversation was just a devilish distraction from what God had called the band to do.

He and Korey reminded each other that they would not be ashamed of Christ.

Pontius Pilate once asked “What is truth?”  Pop culture seems to ask that question today.  So many people believe in relative truth, each person believing in his/her/their own “truth.”

But as Cooper writes, there IS such thing as ABSOLUTE TRUTH, and that Truth is established by almighty God.

The book outlines how Cooper became awake and alive to absolute Truth.

He talks in the book about the flawed thinking behind Post-Modernism, Relativism, Marxism, and how those thought processes have worked their way into the Church.

Cooper talks about the Authority of the Word of God, and how The Bible is the final word on everything.

In this book, you’ll also learn why “fun is not fulfillment.”  “Huh?” you ask.   That’s why you need to read this.

Outside of a few clerical errors that another round of proofreading could have cleaned up, this is a very good read and a great volume, especially for someone’s first book.

I did a lot of highlighting in the book;  I have used it once already in the context of a devotional with my teenage kids; I will definitely read it again, and rather than tell you more about what it says, I urge you to buy a copy and read it yourself.

The book is solidly Scriptural.

The only thing I take issue with is the (probably not purposely) implied dismissal of all the Christian Rock radio airplay his band received prior to their acceptance in the mainstream.   He writes in Chapter 7 that in 2010, Skillet “was just beginning to air on radio stations for the first time.”  Um, excuse me!?

I was one of many music directors/program directors/DJ’s that played Skillet 14 years earlier than that on FM radio beginning in 1996 when the band’s debut self-titled album came out on Ardent/Forefront.

I met John, Korey and the rest of the band when their sophomore disc Hey You, I Love Your Soul was their latest record, and the FM radio station I worked for at the time brought them in concert to our annual festival.

Skillet thanked me and that radio station in the album liner notes for albums 3 and 4, Invincible and Alien Youth.  So, of course he knows this.

Don’t forget your Christian Rock Radio roots, John.   We’ll still be playing your stuff after (and if) the air goes out of your mainstream radio success balloon.

The little things that stuck in my craw aside, this is definitely a worthwhile read.   And yes, I still have mad respect for John L. Cooper and Skillet.





Brian Head Welch of Love & Death Speaks At The Sioux Falls Prayer Breakfast

Brian “Head” Welch, lead singer of Christian Rock band Love & Death (and guitarist of Korn) spoke at the Sioux Falls Prayer Breakfast today.  South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem was in attendance and she offered a prayer for government leaders.  Welch started his talk with some lighthearted banter and jokes and he talked about Noem’s dust-up with Lil Nas X about his “Satan shoes” and he said we should have some Jesus shoes with which we could stomp on Satan with.

Welch’s theme was “the bombs of life”.

He said the first bomb in his life was 20 years ago when his wife left him and his daughter when his girl was 2 years old. Welch said he was drinking every night and sometimes taking cocaine to try to numb the pain.  He said one night he woke up at 3 am and he could not find her.  She wasn’t able to find him, either, as he had passed out behind a couch.   When he did find her, she was asleep out on the patio in his cigarette-smoking chair, right next to the swimming pool.  That was a wakeup call to him that he could not continue to be a drunk.

Welch was going to change his life.  For four months, he went to the gym and he was drinking protein shakes instead of booze.  Then 9/11 hit, and as he said, it “threw the world into chaos, confusion, and fear.”  He succumbed to those emotions and he began drinking again.

When he was getting drunk and getting high, he thought he was feeling freedom.  In 2003, he decided to quit trying to quit and went into full-blown partying.  He hired nannies to watch his girl so he could party more.  He started doing meth in the spring of that year, and he did them every day.   He knew he was addicted to methamphetamines.  He tried to stop and couldn’t.    None of the other guys knew at the time that he was on meth and he suffered a massive panic attack due to the inability to stop.

He once ordered meth via Federal Express…to be delivered to his hotel.   He was afraid a dog might sniff it out.  He became suicidal.

This man, Brian “Head” Welch, who was addicted to alcohol and/or drugs from the ages of 15 to 33, finally decided to go to church for help.

Fortunately, he went to a place where he was not judged.  The pastor was very real in his sermon, talking about how he himself had previously been an alcoholic and how Jesus changed his life, and during that message Welch says “hope started getting poured into him.”  He said to himself “Maybe God is real.  I gotta give this a try.”  And in that church in Bakersfield, California, Welch raised his hand, saying he wanted to receive Jesus Christ.

Welch went on to pray: “Lord, are you real like that guy said?” “This is so weird,” Welch thought to himself.   “Because I am going to die for these drugs and ruin my daughter if you don’t set me free.”

And Jesus revealed Himself to Welch:  he felt unconditional love and he felt God’s embrace and that was the end of his drug habit.

Welch has been walking with Jesus Christ for 16 years now.



Manafest f Redlight King “Save You” Lyric Video Posted

The lyric video for Manafest x Redlight King Save You is now on the interwebs:

Keep in mind that for most of our songs*, the lyrics display in our HTML5 players on our website and in most of our apps as the song plays.

*If we have the lyrics for a given song, we display them.

Ocean Dark Video For Their New Blast Hit “Fallen”


Check out the video for the latest TheBlast.FM hit from Finnish band Ocean Dark “Fallen”:


2nd Annual Grizzly Award Winners

The Dove Awards don’t do justice to the world of Christian ROCK (and have not for many years, as they have merged Contemporary and Rock into one category called, cleverly, Rock/Contemporary…as if those those should even be in the same category), so last year, the Grizzly Awards came to the rescue.

Last night, the second annual Grizzly Awards were announced.

The Grizzly winners list, in our opinion, has some anomalies, as there is one winner we didn’t list whose lyrics don’t show any signs of Christianity in them (which is why we don’t play them); the lead singer of one band, FFAK…bragged on Twitter last summer about how he donated to the Minnesota Freedom Fund, which was bailing out violent BLM and Antifa rioters, and we immediately deleted all of their music on The Blast and The Implosion.

Did it help Zahna’s cause that their song of the year was a Taylor Swift cover?  Probably, but it would have been nice if this song had been marketed to radio.  It’s a killer track.  But it flew under the radar…until now, suddenly.

A screamo vocalist from a band called As Lions and Lambs also won.   Who? We know, exactly.  And maybe they are great and maybe they will get airplay here soon (we’ve already reached out).  But in our humble opinion, winners in these categories should be well known groups.

Some of the results lead us to believe that there needs to be a much bigger sampling of people voting.

Blasters, let’s get involved in the nomination and voting processes to a much greater extent next year.  End of rant…now the pertinent winners list…


Livestream of the Year Winner:

Album of the Year Winner:
Fireflight “Who We Are”

Rock Song of the Year Winner:
The Protest “Greater”

Classic Metal Song of the Year Winner:
Chaotic Resemblance  “Unto the Lamb”

Song of the Year Winner:
Zahna “Look What You Made Me Do”

Music Video of the Year Winner:
Bayless “Ready Aim”

Vocalist(Scream) of the Year Winner:
Matt McNamara (As Lions and Lambs)

Vocalist (Clean) of the Year Winner:
Dawn Michele (Fireflight)
Guitarist of the Year Winner:
JR Bareis (Spoken and Love and Death)
Bassist of the Year Winner:
Ken Reed (Seventh Day Slumber)
Drummer of the Year Winner:
Jarob Bramlett (The Protest)
Producer of the Year Winner:
Josiah Prince
Fan Choice:

Disciple Online Concert # 2 Is Less Than An Hour Away

Disciple’s second online concert, which celebrates the 10th Anniversary of the Horseshoes And Hand Grenades album, is live in a little less than an hour.  You can snag tickets here:


No B-Sides Songs Will Play At Disciple’s Horseshoes & Hand Grenades Online Concert

It’s pure greed on our part at TheBlast.FM.  Our own Colin Cruz just asked Disciple lead singer Kevin Young if the band will be playing any of the B-Sides songs at their online concert on Saturday January 23rd.

The B-Sides, you ask?

Yeah.  Remember?  That Disciple album that came out 10 years ago called Horseshoes & Hand Grenades…also had some digital add-on songs that didn’t make the main record.

It was called Horseshoes & Hand Grenades B-Sides.   And it had some fabulous songs on it that we have Blasted over the years:  namely The FuryComedy TragedyDisasterpiece, and Watch It Burn.

And the answer is?   No.

Young reminds us that they are playing the entire (main) Horseshoes & Hand Grenades album from front to back, plus playing two new songs, including The Blast hit Darkness Dies.    

Those two songs plus the 12 on Horseshoes & Hand Grenades makes 14, and Young says he can only handle 14 songs a night.

Fair enough.  It was worth asking.   Inquiring minds wanted to know.

Love And Death To Do Online Concert on Friday February 12, 2021

Love And Death is joining the online concert fray, with a show of their own on Friday February 12th!

It’s been a long time, and Love And Death fans are eager to finally see the band in concert again.

The Blast was the first Christian Rock Radio station to jump on to the new song Down, on November 14, 2020.

To find out more info about the show, go to


Disciple And Kutless Sending Bibles To Public Schools In Croatia


This is a far cry from what’s happened in America…where secularists have tried to kick God out of our schools:

In Croatia, they are asking for Bibles to be donated to their public school systems, where they are teaching the Bible!

Christian Rock bands Disciple and Kutless are getting involved in the efforts.

Learn more about the program and how to donate here:


Skillet’s John Cooper On Fox & Friends Saturday Morning

John Cooper, founder and lead singer of Skillet will be on Fox & Friends Saturday on the Fox News Channel at about 7:45 am USA/Canadian Central Time.  He will be interviewed regarding his first book he’s authored called Awake & Alive To Truth.   Cooper says they sold out their first print run on release day and that a second print run is starting up.