On my way out from work this afternoon I noticed weather wasn’t so motorcycle-friendly. Dark clouds dominated the skyline, rain poured hard, road was soaked. Times like this I appreciate the fact that I got a car to drive. So I was thinking then, what would be a great driving music to go along with the wet ride home? Lo and behold, some Rock ‘n Roll CD, Journey: Revelation.
We bought this album last week and I have played it right after to figure out if it was worth it. Then this afternoon’s gloomy weather made the perfect setting for me to listen to it more again. The cool and humid breeze completed the nostalgia.
The steadfast steering wheel of the Honda seems to vanish right out of my grip all of a sudden. The illuminated dashboard gauges began to blur and faded all the way. The feeling of firmly seated in the driver’s seat and the security of the seat belt gone as well. I cared less every minute the Journey CD plays as if giving in to an unforeseen force.
With each track of the CD playing one after the other, I found myself inside a rather boxy vehicle with both of my hands holding the bar on top of my head. I can feel the blaring of the 15-inch speakers located right under my upholstered seat and with its heavy bass thumping and the high treble trying to cope up while some rock band send spine-chilling riffs. The black lights inside made the white shirts around me glow like some magic tricks thus enhancing the out-of-this-world sensation. I tried to peek out to check where on earth I’m currently at and I soon realized that the speeding vehicle has its windows wide open. Another head movement and I can see that its rear door is likewise ajar like those in airplanes with skydivers waiting for the red light to go green. Turning my gaze in front, I see a long-haired driver carelessly enjoying the music while speeding past sugarcane-filled trucks. So where was I exactly? Well, in a jeepney and I’m in tattered jeans, faded shirt and a pair of scuffed Chuck Taylor shoes.
College days once again.
And that’s the effect this Journey CD has on me. The classic rhythm of guitars, drums and keyboards blasted me right back to the past. The vocals this time though isn’t from the band’s original vocalist anymore. It’s now Arnel Pineda, a pure Filipino talent who despite small, relative to the other band members, has such powerful voice well comparable to the original vocalist, Steve Perry.
Arnel’s rendition of most of the original Journey songs is almost on point. And hearing those I would call melodic shriek made me wonder if the myth that tight leather pants do make Rock ‘n Rollers achieve that impossible pitch could be true. Go figure.
After listening to almost everything over and over again, I could conclude that Arnel did a really good job in his first album with Journey. Except for Open Arms (CD 2 track 9) which in my opinion is a disappointment because I actually don’t know if Arnel tried to impose his own singing style in this song by deviating to what was done by Steve. If he did, well, I just don’t like it or maybe I’ll get used to it soon. Anyway, before the Pineda fans start throwing thrash emails, I’d like to say that of all the 23 songs in the album (CD 1 and 2 combined), this is the only song that I’m having second thoughts listening to again. Other than this, the rest are just perfect for those who love the classic Rock ‘n Roll feel.
My personal favorites in this album are: Never Walk Away, Let It Take You Back, Only the Young, and of course, Faithfully. I love this last song a lot that it had me clicking on the disk player’s repeat track button several times while hopelessly trying to sing along with it in the confines of our car and probably to the ire of the Wisconsin football team bobhead. Poor guy it’s been bouncing up in down, front and back that I snapped out of my in-the-jeepney-ride nostalgia.
Tomorrow, it might rain again; I might have to cover bobhead with a hanky this time for my full uninterrupted journey with Journey back to the past.