Monday, March 26, 2018

Journey: The Eyes Of A Woman

"In the eyes of a woman, there's nowhere to run."

Is there anyone who doesn't love Journey that is conscious of the band's work? This is like the ultimate rock band of the 1980s that is forever loved thanks in large part to the classic anthem Don't Stop Believin' from Escape (1981), a recording that's rolled out from time to time to the overture of new fans. After that fans of Steve Perry and Neal Schon discover just how endless in high quality the group's amazing catalogue is thanks in large part to the sweet, golden pipes of Steve Perry.

Since Perry's official departure in 1998 the band has never been the same for many fans myself included. Speaking for myself, outside of Foreigner and Lou Gramm, I don't think I've ever missed a band quite as much as Journey as it was constituted with Perry at the helm on vocals.

Each recording is graced with at least a handful of gems and Perry was born with an absolute gift. The band's cannon of songs is seemingly endless and beloved but sadly remains static today.

Surprisingly his solo work never quite matched the melodic and hook-laden qualities of his work with Schon and Jonathan Cain. As a trio in Journey those three men wrote some of the best songs in pop music for a decade.

Sure we loved Steve Perry on Oh Sherrie (A US Billboard number one), but after that and Foolish Heart his knack for a serious melody dwindled to a degree as did his pop success and he's been all but quiet for two decades. Sad to see a voice like that silenced for so long despite promises of a new recording for years now. Come on Steve. We miss you. For the love of God or strange medicine we need you.

As a music fan I'm hard pressed to pick any one song, apart from the aforementioned Don't Stop Believin', as their best because Perry and company has churned out a body of work that is magic with hook after delicious hook.

Driving that highway to hell (called work), The Eyes Of A Woman hit the speakers and the volume turned way up. The golden chords of Perry's voice filled the cabin and it was a flawless performance. It's truly next to impossible to just mention one golden song, but this was as good as any.

Looking back at Raised On Radio (1986) while hearing this gorgeous composition this writer and listener was reminded of just how perfect that recording was from beginning to end. It was a rock classic for the ages. Released in April 1986 it became a summer soundtrack of my youth on those days by the ocean in the blistering sun. It's an eleven track gem that is nearly flawless. So many great songs and The Eyes Of A Woman is just one that comprises the classic Raised On Radio. It's just one more fantastic track from that recording that I have adored forever. The writing is indeed simple and a clear tribute to the seduction of a woman's beauty. There's nothing terribly noteworthy about the writing, but it was always the band and the vocal delivery by Steve Perry and the execution of performance that gave each song its heft and credibility. Journey could sell anything and do it in spades.

Raised On Radio (1986). A-. An outstanding eleven track rock and roll album that included Girl Can't Help It, Suzanne, I'll Be Alright Without You, Happy To Give, Be Good To Yourself and more. Perry and the band were riding high and yet it would be their last recording for a decade until the one off return of Perry with the band for Trial By Fire (1996). I was raised on Raised On Radio and loved the group yet had no idea it was essentially over with this great recording.

The Eyes Of A Woman. A. A beautifully mesmerizing pop song that illustrates how flawlessly the group weaves its musicianship with Perry's own God-given instrument. Evidence the group had an enormous gift for a time.

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