“Pride Of Lions is my vision of the best elements of the great melodic rock era of the 80’s, updated of course with more modern production sounds”. These are the words of Jim Peterik, a man who just might know what he’s talking about when it comes to great melodic rock.
Jim was one of the key figures on the music scene in the 70’s and 80’s forming the popular horn-rock band The Ides Of March, singing and writing that band’s platinum number one hit in 1970, “Vehicle”. From there he went on to form one of the most influential bands in rock: Survivor. He co-wrote such hits as “High On You”, “I Can’t Hold Back, “The Search Is Over”, “Burning Heart, “Is This Love” and of course the multi-platinum, Grammy-winning theme from Rocky III, “Eye Of The Tiger” before leaving the band in the early 90's. Jim also chalked up top 10 hits with 38 Special including “Hold On Loosely”, “Caught Up In You”, “Rockin’ Into The Night” and many more. With Sammy Hagar he co-wrote the platinum theme from the sci-fi animation feature: “Heavy Metal”. Jim’s other co-writes reads like a who’s who of aor rock: Lynyrd Skynrd, Van Zant, Aerosmith, John Wetton, Cheap Trick, Uriah Heep, REO Speedwagon, Kelly Keagy, Kevin Chalfant, Joseph Williams, Mecca, Fergie Fredriksen and many more.
“When Serafino Perugino, Frontiers Records President, called me in February of this year and asked if we could have a new Pride Of Lions album written and ready by July for a November release - I just about dropped the phone - that’s exactly one year since the release of our debut!” exclaims Peterik, “I composed myself and always one for a good challenge I said, “No problem!”. From that moment on Jim and Toby Hitchcock have been living and breathing Pride Of Lions.
Their second album, “The Destiny Stone” is now complete and if early response is any indication, it just may surpass the first in artistic vision and world acclaim. “We set out to top ourselves, to write a set of songs with the great uplifting messages and melodies that have become our trademark”, says Peterik. “To have a great singer like Toby to co-sing these songs is a songwriter’s dream come true. It lets me explore the full range of melodic vision”.
Toby Hitchcock, a relative newcomer to the rock scene, at age 26 has made an indelible mark as a “singer’s singer” with echoes of some of rock’s finest voices in his distinctive tenor. “I had a blast recording this album. We kept the basic team the same, same band, same studio, same production team (Jim and Larry Millas (Billy Idol, Survivor), behind the board. I say, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!”
“The Destiny Stone” is a song cycle that Jim Peterik started in January ’04. Many of the songs were inspired by the mysterious visions he experienced as a child of four. “The only way I can describe it was that it felt like I was falling through a crack in time. It was far different than a dream - much more vivid and intense. “The Destiny Stone” is the musical embodiment of these journeys”.
The range of material on the album goes from majestic orchestrated ballads such as “Back To Camelot” and “Light From A Distant Shore”, to hard as nails rockers such as “Born To Believe In You”, “Parallel Lines” and the lead off track “The Courage To Love Somebody”. “As usual, I wear my influences on my sleeve, like with the Styx inspired, “Man Behind The Mask” and my tribute to John Miles, “The Gift Of Song”. But I always try to inject my own style to the blend and make it unique”, states Jim. “My favorite on this record is “Falling Back To Then”, says Toby.
Pride of Lions plans to bring the whole band to Europe for a tour in the very near future. “It’s time to show the world what we’ve been proving in the States for over a year. We are ready to rock!” says Hitchcock. In a computerized world where great melodies and passionate feelings are hard to come by, put on your head phones, turn up the volume, dim the lights and get ready to ride: “The Destiny Stone”.