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Styx - Man Of Miracles CD (album) cover

MAN OF MIRACLES

Styx

 

Prog Related

2.75 | 105 ratings

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Finnforest
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Miracles? Hardly.

In the beginning of 1974, Styx was working on their 4th album "Man of Miracles" and had a new manager named Jim Vose. The wild third album "The Serpent is Rising" was yet another commercial failure and things were getting tense. The band members were seemingly going nowhere while all but one were now married and some had kids. The pressure to get something going was on the band and when Miracles was released it was yet another stiff. But then the band caught an amazing break. The track "Lady" from two years prior caught on with some radio stations and broke through. On the strength of that single the band became a national act instead of folding. DeYoung admits it made him cocky and he was determined to use his personal success to begin to assert himself in the group. It was the next step toward commercial success and the next step toward John Curulewski's departure.

"Man of Miracles" is the worst Styx album until Kilroy. The only highlight of this throwaway set is the combination of DeYoung's "Golden Lark" and "Song for Suzanne." The former is lovely with melodic piano and strings behind it, the latter is yet another of the 700 songs dedicated to his lovely wife. This is one of the better ones, full of theatrics, thunder, dark strings, and tons of mood. These two songs are worth hearing for Styx fans, but they are all that stands between me and a one-star rating for this album. Young and Curulewski's hard rock rippers could be great when they were on, but this time out they are banal and boring tracks barely fit for the barroom set. It sounds like the band were biding their time at this point, dying to get away from Wooden Nickel and stockpiling away the better ideas. At least that is the case with Curulewski and Young, who sound like they are dealing with their frustration by regressing big time. Johnny B Goode, anyone? The title track is the other decent song with distorted Hammond and a hugely heavy Uriah Heep feel. The weakest of the early Styx years.

Finnforest | 2/5 |

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