Band Review: Survivor

I first remember encountering the band Survivor when I heard “The Search is Over” on the radio back in the mid-1980s, and I remember how much I fell in love with that song.  I can also remember hearing “Burning Heart” on KZZU, my local pop station, and I ended up liking that song a lot as well.  “Burning Heart” was a song Survivor did for the film Rocky IV.

Christmas 1987, when I was in seventh grade, my father bought our family’s very first compact disc player.  For Christmas gifts, my sister and I each received a couple of CDs.  One of the two CDs I was given was Survivor’s Vital Signs, and I was overjoyed to discover that “The Search is Over” was on it. While listening to the CD, I realized I had also heard “I Can’t Hold Back” and “High on You” on the radio, but I hadn’t realized that those songs were also by Survivor.  When I listened to the CD, I also discovered that I enjoyed the album track, “It’s the Singer Not the Song.”

The next year, in late 1988, Survivor released a new song called “Didn’t Know it Was Love,” which came from their album Too Hot to Sleep.  While it was a decent song, it just couldn’t quite measure up to their older material.

Survivor released a greatest hits album in 1989, and I picked up a CD copy of it a few years later.  I finally had a copy of “Eye of the Tiger,” the theme song for Rocky III (which is one of Survivor’s songs that I heard after “The Search is Over”) and “Burning Heart.”  I discovered some more of the band’s older material on this CD as well: “Is This Love,” “Poor Man’s Son,” “Desperate Dreams,” “How Much Love,” and “Man Against the World.”  I enjoyed most of it; however, I was disappointed to discover that “Didn’t Know it Was Love” didn’t make the cut.  As of this writing, it appears that seven additional greatest hits packages have been released for the band, with the most recent being 2009’s Playlist: The Very Best of Survivor.

I had lost track of the band after the late 1980s.  From Internet research I have done, it turns out that Survivor had gone on an indefinite hiatus after the Too Hot to Sleep album.  However, the band got back together and released a new album called Reach in 2006.  The band is also performing regularly in North America, Europe, and Asia.

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