http://assets-s3.rollingstone.com/assets/images/album_review/bec8aace78f6837364fece7c4a222030cdd45f0b.jpg Revelation



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5 3 0
July 10, 2008

If a band sticks around long enough, it turns into a tribute band. For years, Journey have slogged around the oldies circuit with a rotating cast of singers trying to impersonate Steve Perry, who belted out the group's Seventies and Eighties hits. But this double-CD set, which also includes a live DVD, features the most unlikely Perry sound-alike yet: Arnel Pineda, a 40-year-old Filipino who spends an entire disc delivering note-for-note remakes of classics like "Don't Stop Believin'." On the second disc, Journey also pull off a tribute-band coup: some damn good originals. With guitarist Neal Schon in tow, the riff-heavy "Change for the Better" and the ballad "Like a Sunshower" hew to the formula that served the group well back in '81: Start with stately keyboard arpeggios, flavor with guitar heroics, top off with warbling, high-tenor choruses. It's pure schlock, but the craftsmanship is formidable, and there is undeniable pleasure in young-lovers-battling-the-odds arias like "Faith in the Heartland." The message remains the same: Hold on to that feeling.

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