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Journey - Arrival CD (album) cover




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2.75 | 50 ratings

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2 stars The good point about this release is that the dreadful Perry has disappeared. But I'm not sure that his substitute Steve Augeri is doing better.

Because the overall feeling remains almost the same even if the presence of the mighty Schon is more evident on his "come back" album. Same sort of average AOR "Higher Place", "Signs Of Life", "I Got A Reason", cheesy ballads like "All The Way" or the well named "Loved By You" and the weak "With Your Love", or maybe if you prefer average rock songs on the heavy edge as "All The Things" or "Live And Breathe".

I'm afraid that these songs are a weak indication of the material held in this "Arrival". I am of course nostalgic of their first three albums and I can understand that there is no way to get back to these great times. But the band already missed his first come back with "Raised On The Radio", so why bother with another failure?

The only improvement is that Neal has more occasions to show his great guitar skills (which I discovered in 73 with the fantastic "Santana III"). The major problem of this album is that it also last for over ? seventy five minutes! Quite a challenging work to listen to these 4,500 or so seconds of "music" available on this album.

Now, this album is not a total disaster; but that's only thanks to the superb work from the guitar master. One of the few songs that I can bear is the good rock ballad "Livin' To Do". At least vocals are above average and are a good introduction to the glorious guitar part.

Still, in the midst of all these weak music, there are here and there some hopes: the intro of "World Gone Wild" is quite well balanced, aggressive, powerful and in one word: great. It could have been a great track if it shouldn't have been turned into some sort of heavy pop AOR later on. For sure, the "wildest" and the best offering.

None of the remaining songs are any better than the ones I have outlined. This album could have cut almost in halves and as such could have been considered as average. Don't even dream of a second of prog music during this awfully long album; you won't find any.

I am really doing a huge effort to rate this album with two stars. But I don't know why. Maybe thanks to my deep appreciation for Neal. Yes, that must be it?because the last couple of songs from this album won't turn you into a "Journey" fan for sure ("Nothin' Comes Close" for instance).

My second fave (if I can call it that way) is certainly the upbeat and straight rock "To Be Alive Again". Some good old rock tune with beat, passion and guts. If only there would have been more like this one! Killing guitar solo (but damned short) from the magician again. But the closing "We Will Meet Again" is not magic at all?

ZowieZiggy | 2/5 |


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