Beat the System is the seventh album from Christian rock band Petra. It was released in January 1985 by Star Song Records. It is the first album to feature John Lawry in keyboards, and the last studio album to feature lead singer Greg X. Volz.
Shortly after the band finished touring for More Power to Ya, keyboardist John Slick left the band. Heading to the studio, producer Jonathan David Brown approached keyboardist Carl Marsh to help him in the recording of Beat the System. Eventually, Brown decided not to use band members Louie Weaver and Mark Kelly for the recording of drums and bass respectively. Instead, he asked Marsh to record the instruments using a Fairlight synthesizer.
Beat the System was recorded and mixed by Brown at Mama Jo's Recording Studio and The Bennett House Recording Studios. Mastering was again done by Steve Hall at Future Disc Systems. Rhett Lawrence and John Lawry, who was hired towards the end of the recording, added overdubs and effects to some songs.
Although Petra had already featured keyboards notably in their previous album, the techno-like sound is more prominent in Beat the System. This is more evident because the album features synthesized bass and drums, performed by Carl Marsh. For example, songs like "Computer Brains" and "Witch Hunt" rely mostly on keyboards and special effects.
The album also features a new version of the song "God Gave Rock 'n' Roll to You", which the band had previously recorded in 1977.
Track listing Edit
All songs written by Bob Hartman, except where noted.
- "Beat the System" – 4:22
- "Computer Brains" – 4:01
- "Clean" – 3:01
- "It Is Finished" – 3:52
- "Voice in the Wind" – 4:30
- "God Gave Rock and Roll to You" (Words & Music by Russ Ballard) – 3:54
- "Witch Hunt" – 4:34
- "Hollow Eyes" – 4:03
- "Speak to the Sky" – 4:16
- "Adonai" – 4:42
- Greg X. Volz – Lead vocals, vocal arrangements
- Bob Hartman – Lead guitars, background vocals
- Mark Kelly – Bass guitars, synthesizer bass, background vocals
- Louie Weaver – Drums, percussion
- John Lawry – Keyboards, background vocals, synthesizer programming
- Carl Marsh – Arrangements, Fairlight synthesizer programming
- Rhett Lawrence – Additional Fairlight programming
Recording and productionEdit
- Jonathan David Brown – Producer, engineer, mixer, arrangements
- Todd Van Etten – Assistant engineer (at Mama Jo's Recording Studio)
- J.T. Cantwell – Assistant engineer (at The Bennett House Recording Studios)
- Don Cobb – Assistant engineer (at The Bennett House Recording Studios)
- Steve Hall – Mastering
- Robert Peak, Jr. – Cover concept and photography
- Lori Cooper – Graphic design
- David Hix – Electronic photo retouching
- Beat the System on Wikipedia