The best Journey record of them all
Dazedcat | Earth | 04/15/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
This particular record was always my favorite Journey album of them all. This isn't quite as proggy as the first two were and is better focused overall. Their attempt to be more mainstream? Perhaps, but the musicianship is epic...these four musicians could seriously play. Do you want to know how really good Neal Schon was or what he was really capable of doing? Listen to this. Aynsley Dunbar may have gotten lost in the mist of time when it comes to legendary rock drummers talk but again, listen to this and understand how great he really was. "Nickel and Dime" remains absolutely soaring well over thirty years later. Nothing on this record sounds dated at all.
I don't dislike Steve Perry at all but after he joined I lost interest. Nothing that version of Journey (or others) did could ever compare to this. Musical chops matter as much as a good upfront vocalist does, maybe more.
At least I think so anyway."
Outstanding "Pre-Perry" Rock
John A. Sanchez | Pleasanton, TX USA | 02/17/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The year was 1980. "Infinity" and "Evolution" dominated my eight-track player, and "Departure" was on my turntable. Journey was the band that spoke to me the most. So imagine my enthusiasm when I was perusing the used eight-track tapes at the local thrift store and came across a tape by Journey entitled "Next."
I held the cartridge in my hand, not knowing what to think. Psychedelic clothes. Greg Rolie with a moustache. Neal Schon with a gigantic Afro. Aynsley Dunbar and Ross Valory pretty much looked normal. But conspicuous by his absence was Steve Perry. My 15-year old mind could scarcely comprehend what I had stumbled across, but I had to find out.
Back in "the day," being a "Metalhead" was listening to KISS, AC/DC, Styx, Skynyrd, and Black Sabbath with equal zeal. And while most of us "diehard" rockers listened to Journey, only a brave few of us - myself included - dared admit to really liking them. However, this album ranks up there with good, solid hard rock. I can only imagine how these songs sounded live; we'll never find out, as all vocal work was done by Rolie.
You won't find the power ballads or polished rockers of the Perry era, but what you will find with "Next" - which is, incidentally, my favorite pre-Perry Journey album - is borderline psychedelic rock driven by Rolie's piano and keyboard prowess and Neal Schon's timeless guitar playing. You rocked with Perry, you embraced Augeri, and maybe like me, you grudgingly accepted Arnel Pineda, but to get the full Journey experience, "Next" is a must-have."