Not even the worst video of all time (debatable) could ruin this song. I mean, the video is epically bad. Here’s a shot by shot remake of the video that drives that point home:
All right, so I have a complicated relationship with Journey. When my wife and I got married in 2007, we wanted our friend to sing “True Colors” by Cyndi Lauper. He couldn’t find a version in his range, so instead he sang “Open Arms” by Journey – a song I despise. But, wow, I wish you were there because he knocked the cover off that baseball. I mean, he sounded amazing and his singing elevated the song significantly. I stood and applauded for him. I’d give him a standing ovation again. But, you know, I still can’t stand that song when Journey plays it on the single…
…but I bet if I heard Journey play it live, I’d pee my pants with excitement.
And herein lies the conundrum I face. Since I started singing in a band, my pure respect for Steve Perry has skyrocketed. Seriously, the man has a voice like no other. Ok, one other:
Together with the rest of the band – particularly guitarist Neil Schon and keyboardist Jonathan Cain – Perry wrote songs that really showcased his voice. Yes, some of them are painfully maudlin, but if you put that aside, he sounds remarkable singing them. I spent half my life mocking Journey and I’m going to spend the rest of my life wishing I could sing like Steve Perry. There’s a bit of karma for you.
Anyhow, in 1983, they released Frontiers. Even at the precious age of 15, I hated Journey. I’d owned a copy of their previous album, Escape (was it a gift? did I buy it?) and wasn’t about to make that same mistake again by purchasing their new record. And then I heard target=”_blank”>”Separate Ways (World’s Apart)” for the first time. Thank goodness I heard it and didn’t see that video because I would have rejected the song just based on the air keyboard moments.
I love the keyboard riff, I love the crunchy guitars and I love the stadium filling bombastic backing vocals (backing the bombastic lead vocals). I especially love it when Steve Perry sings “Ohhhhhhhh” like he’s trying to punch polyps off his throat and beat them to death with his tonsils. As far as I’m concerned, this is just about the perfect pop rock song.
I will fight anyone who disagrees. With my voice.