The two biggest selling (and also their best) albums from Journey, meet in the ring. Who will be the winner? Both albums have ten tracks each. So they will each track will battle against each other in the original track order from each album.
Round #1: Don’t Stop Believin’ VS Separate Ways (Worlds Apart)
This is definitely the toughest round among all. Both were the lead singles from each album, and also they are all-time classics up to this day. Anyway I prefer Separate Ways kinda more, since it had my favorite style of AOR (what we would call crystal clear Synths and Hard Rock guitars in perfect balance).
Escape – Frontiers: 0-1
Round #2: Stone In Love VS Send Her My Love
Send Her My Love was perhaps the weakest cut from the first side of Frontiers album. Not a bad song obviously, but not as great as the other four. I would pick Stone In Love here. By the way the latter also released as a single, but unfortunately it didn’t meet the same success unlike Don’t Stop Believin’, Who’s Crying Now and Open Arms.
Escape – Frontiers: 1-1
Round #3: Who’s Crying Now VS Chain Reaction
I would choose Who’s Crying Now. But since we talk about the Studio versions of each album here, I will choose Chain Reaction (which also had the best music video, among all the videos from Frontiers). It was using pretty much the same formula with Separate Ways, but it was leaning more towards a Hard Rock direction. By the way Who’s Crying Now live version is definitely far superior than the Studio version, so in general this would be the winner perhaps.
Escape – Frontiers: 1-2
Round #4: Keep On Runnin’ VS After The Fall
Those two are not much comparable I know. But they were the fourth tracks from both albums. Anyway I prefer After The Fall among those two.
Escape – Frontiers: 1-3
Round #5: Still They Ride VS Faithfully
Well, this round is about two Power ballads, with Faithfully being their most successful Power Ballad overall perhaps. But I prefer Still They Ride more, so Still They Ride here.
Escape – Frontiers: 2-3
Round #6: Escape VS Edge Of The Blade
Edge Of The Blade is definitely the best non-single from Frontiers and maybe their best overall. So it wins here easily.
Escape – Frontiers: 2-4
Round #7: Lay It Down VS Troubled Child
Those two are polar opposites, with Lay It Down being a more straight forward Hard Rock cut, and Troubled Child more like a Melodic Ballad. I prefer Troubled Child because of its beautiful keyboard melody.
Escape – Frontiers: 2-5
Round #8: Dead Or Alive VS Back Talk
Both lean towards a more traditional Hard Rock sound than an AOR sound, but I believe Dead Or Alive sounds better. Also Back Talk is perhaps the most irrelevant cut among the general Frontiers’ album mood. It would fit more like as a B-Side in my opinion.
Escape – Frontiers: 3-5
Round #9: Mother, Father VS Frontiers
Mother, Father by far. Along with Still They Ride, is the most epic cut from Escape album, and also an underrated Journey ballad in general.
Escape – Frontiers: 4-5
Round #10: Open Arms VS Rubicon.
Open Arms definitely, especially when it is played live. Not that the Studio Version is bad, but the live version is just epic. Just like Who’s Crying Now.
Escape – Frontiers: 5-5
So we have a tie as it seems. In that case we must have a sudden death round by picking a B-Side song (which wasn’t included in those two albums) from a single of each album.
Sudden Death: La Raza Del Sol (B-Side of Still They Ride) VS Only Solutions (B-Side of After The Fall (North America single))
I prefer La Raza Del Sol from here. It’s one of the most underrated Journey songs and a song that it would be nice as a beach song, played in some beach bar! Only Solutions unfortunately, doesn’t fulfill Frontiers’ standards, but still not a bad cut overall. It was also included in the OST from the movie Tron.
So Escape is the winner!
Trivia: There is a video-game for Atari 2600 console called Journey Escape , based on this album, released in 1982. And also another follow-up Arcade game called Journey, released in 1983. For more info see here and here.