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Survivor - 1982 Eye Of The Tiger

ARTIST: Survivor
ALBUM: Eye Of The Tiger
LABEL: Scotti Bros
SERIAL: FZ 38062
YEAR: 1982
CD REISSUE: 1990, Scotti Bros, 512-025-2 * 2016, Rock Candy Records, CANDY322


LINEUP: Dave Bickler - vocals * Frankie Sullivan - guitars * Jim Peterik - keyboards * Stephan Ellis - bass * Marc Droubay - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Eye Of The Tiger * 02 Feels Like Love * 03 Hesitation Dance * 04 The One That Really Matters * 05 I'm Not That Man Anymore * 06 Children Of The Night * 07 Ever Since The World Began * 08 American Heartbeat * 09 Silver Girl


We all remember the riff.. right? One of the most identifiable intros to music, that has been used a thousand times over on TV and film. That's right, we're talking Survivor's 'Eye Of The Tiger'. Not so much the album, but the tune. Who would've guessed that this Chicago band would tip 1982 on it's head with this song, albeit with a bit of help from a certain someone called Sylvester Stallone who wanted them to write a song for his movie called 'Rocky III'. This is the band's third studio album, and you would think according to the popular press at the time, the Survivor were nothing more than a one-hit wonder, and that the song was all they had to show during 1982. Not so, as the album contains a few other goodies, and remains to this day, an underrated slice of their 80's work, perhaps overshadowed by 1984's 'Vital Signs' LP, but still good nonetheless.

The Songs
Skipping through the title track which we all know, we don't need to talk about this track, it's all been said and done before. Second up is the surging AOR of 'Feels Like Love', complete with chugging guitars and a typical Peterik arrangement. 'Hesitation Dance' drops back the tempo slightly with its slow-burning riffs and Bicklers' vocals coming off like Brian Howe era Bad Company. Sullivan keeps the guitars chugging away on 'The One That Really Matters', a song blessed with a great chorus. We move into power ballad territory with 'I'm Not That Man Anymore', a Peterik inspired slice of brilliance, whereas 'Children Of The Night' reverts back to Survivor's upbeat bright and breezy style of AOR. 'Ever Since The World Began' is one of my fave tracks ever, though admittedly the Tommy Shaw version from 'Ambition' is better, but no doubt he drew inspiration from this version. 'American Heartbeat' the song, no doubt helped spawn an entire generation of young AOR bands out of America, and so it should've, as this is one of the LP highlights. The band finish up with the mid-tempo 'Silver Girl', and again look to 80's and early 90's era Bad Company for a bit of unintentional inspiration.

In Summary
'Eye Of The Tiger' (the song) would spend six weeks at #1 in the charts, and would end up as the #2 song for the entire 1982 year. Over the years, the song has been covered by so many artists (too many to name), and has been parodied to death as a typical rememberance of the 80's decade, for better or for worse. A good album, much overlooked, it was originally re-released in 1990, but has been reissed several other times since. Unfortunately, 1983's 'Caught In The Game' did not equal its predecessors success at the box-office, but is still good nonetheless, but they topped it all with 1984's classic 'Vital Signs'.

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#1 | Eric on August 31 2009 10:52:00
'The One That Really Matters' is one of my favorite Survivor songs. It was released as a single and should have been a bigger hit than it was. Good stuff!
#2 | jeffrey343 on August 31 2009 15:19:14
I didn't realize this one hadn't been reviewed yet. There is way more greatness here than just the title track. Their first two albums were quite good, but they really nailed this one. And they never really captured this sound again, as their later efforts became less raw and more polished (but still great, of course). Dave Bickler's beret inspired a fashion trend at my high school back in '82.
#3 | dangerzone on September 01 2009 05:01:45
Brilliant album all the way but I still rate
'Caught in the Game' as highly.
#4 | sabace on September 04 2009 18:11:19
great lp, full of great songs . production a bit weak .
the quality of the songs over come this .
#5 | super80boy on August 16 2015 21:37:31
Another consistently solid as a rock album from these overlooked boys. 'The One That Really Matters' is stellar while the keyboard and guitar interplay are as good as it gets in 'I'm Not That Man Anymore'. The pounding drums coupled with keyboard chopping in standout 'American Heartbeat' find similar melodies with the title song. There's just not a bad song to come by here.
#6 | rkbluez on March 04 2017 17:54:33
A little bit of a let down after the amazing Premonition but still a good album in it's own right just seem like some of the songs where rushed and the production wasn't as crisp.

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