Picks and Pans Review: Eye of the Tiger
A Chicago-area group formed in 1978, Survivor recorded two previous LPs, but with this one we're talking big break. Eye of the Tiger, composed by lead guitarist Frankie Sullivan and keyboardist Jim Peterik, is the theme song for the film Rocky III. It is energetic and at least a little less shmaltzy than Gonna Fly Now, despite such lyrics as "Had the guts, got the glory/Went the distance, now I'm not gonna stop/Just a man and his will to survive." Lead vocalist Dave Bickler is a bit reminiscent of Rod Stewart, without the distraction (or the appeal) of the Stewart rasp. Sullivan is an inventive guitarist, and Peterik's keyboards provide colorful foundations. Marc Droubay on drums and Stephan Ellis on bass are solid too. (Daryl Dragon sits in on keyboards on some cuts.) The band is more than versatile enough to go from driving rhythms to such soft-rock ballads as I'm Not That Man Anymore without suffering any loss of distinction. The lyrics, if they are somewhat on the familiar side, won't insult anyone's intelligence, and the sound is clean and consistent—that of a first-class pop-rock group.