Header

CRYSTAL BALL

Styx

Prog Related


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Styx Crystal Ball album cover
3.10 | 116 ratings | 14 reviews | 14% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential


Write a review
Buy STYX Music
from Progarchives.com partners
Studio Album, released in 1976

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Put Me On (4:56)
2. Mademoiselle (3:57)
3. Jennifer (4:16)
4. Crystal Ball (4:32)
5. Shooz (4:44)
6. This Old Man (5:11)
7. Clair de Lune / Ballerina (7:09)

Total Time: 34:45

Lyrics

Search STYX Crystal Ball lyrics

Music tabs (tablatures)

Search STYX Crystal Ball tabs

Line-up / Musicians

- Dennis DeYoung / synthesizer, keyboards, vocals
- Tommy Shaw / guitar (acoustic), guitar, guitar (electric), vocals
- James Young / guitar, vocals
- Chuck Panozzo / bass, guitar (bass), vocals
- John Panozzo / percussion, drums, vocals

Releases information

LP A&M 4604

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
Edit this entry

STYX MP3, Free Download (music stream)


Open extended player in a new pop-up window | Random Playlist (50) | How to submit new MP3s

Buy STYX Crystal Ball Music


Crystal BallCrystal Ball
A&M 1990
Audio CD$1.83
$1.59 (used)
Equinox/Crystal BallEquinox/Crystal Ball
Import · Remastered
MSI:BGO 2006
Audio CD$10.61
$8.98 (used)
crystal ball / short 45 rpm singlecrystal ball / short 45 rpm single
A&M
Vinyl$4.00 (used)
Styx - Crystal Ball - A&M Records - AMLH 64604Styx - Crystal Ball - A&M Records - AMLH 64604
A&M Records
Vinyl$14.89 (used)
Styx Crystal Ball Sp4604 1976 Gold Vinyl Special AdditionStyx Crystal Ball Sp4604 1976 Gold Vinyl Special Addition
A&M
Vinyl$99.99 (used)
STYX CRYSTAL BALL vinyl recordSTYX CRYSTAL BALL vinyl record
N/A
Vinyl$9.00 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
STYX - EQUINOX/CRYSTAL BALL - NEW CD USD $12.37 Buy It Now 4h 24m
VINTAGE STYX "CRYSTAL BALL" LP VINYL IN CELLO A&M SP-4604 JAMES YOUNG DENNIS USD $9.99 [0 bids]
5h 27m
Crystal Ball Styx Audio CD USD $11.01 Buy It Now 6h 47m
Styx "Crystal Ball" Rock / 1976 / LP USD $4.99 [0 bids]
12h 30m
Styx - Crystal Ball - LP Record VG+/EX USD $6.99 [0 bids]
1 day
STYX Crystal Ball LP. 1976 A&M Records SP-4604 Vinyl is VG+ Jacket is VG. USD $6.00 Buy It Now 1 day
STYX Crystal Ball White Label Promo LP Free Combined U.S. Shipping USD $2.99 [1 bids]
1 day
STYX - CRYSTAL BALL, 12" LP Record Classic Rock USD $1.99 [0 bids]
USD $4.99 Buy It Now
1 day
STYX Crystal Ball - 8-TRACK TAPE Tested! New Pad. USD $3.00 Buy It Now 1 day
Lot of 2 Styx LP's - Equinox and Crystal Ball USD $3.95 [0 bids]
1 day
Styx "Crystal Ball" LP USD $4.95 Buy It Now 2 days
VINYL LP Styx - Crystal Ball A&M Records RCA SP-4604 USD $12.99 Buy It Now 2 days
Crystal Ball by Styx (CD, Oct-1990, A&M (USA) USD $4.99 [0 bids]
USD $6.99 Buy It Now
2 days
8 Track Stereo Tape Cartridge - Styx Crystal Ball USD $1.99 [0 bids]
2 days
LP Record - Styx / Crystal Ball USD $14.99 [0 bids]
2 days
STYX crystal ball LP VG SP 4604 Vinyl 1976 Record USD $12.00 Buy It Now 3 days
Crystal Ball - Styx (1988, CD New) USD $5.51 Buy It Now 3 days
Styx Crystal Ball 12" Vinyl Record Album AM Records SP-4604 USD $14.44 Buy It Now 3 days
STYX Crystal Ball Vinyl Record 1976 A&M SP-4604 NM/VG+ USD $24.99 Buy It Now 3 days
STYX crystal ball SP 4604 promo usa a&m 1976 with inner sleeve LP PS EX/VG USD $42.67 Buy It Now 4 days
STYX - CRYSTAL BALL [CD NEW] USD $5.54 Buy It Now 4 days
STYX - CRYSTAL BALL NEW CD USD $8.13 Buy It Now 4 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL SEALED 1976 A&M RECORDS SP 4604 FREE SHIPPING NR!! USD $24.94 [1 bids]
4 days
Styx - Crystal Ball CD USD $8.89 Buy It Now 4 days
Styx - Equinox/Crystal Ball CD USD $25.09 Buy It Now 4 days
STYX - CRYSTAL BALL 1990 US CD * NEW USD $10.93 Buy It Now 5 days
1976 Styx Crystal Ball LP A&M SP-4604 NM- Vinyl USD $10.08 Buy It Now 6 days
STYX Crystal Ball 1976 A&M 4604 VINYL LP New SEALED USD $28.00 Buy It Now 6 days
Styx - Crystal Ball NEW CD USD $8.37 Buy It Now 6 days
Styx - Crystal Ball - LP Record VG+ VG USD $6.99 Buy It Now 6 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL FACTORY SEALED CASSETTE TAPE USD $8.80 Buy It Now 6 days
STYX crystal ball AMLH 64604 uk a&m 1976 with insert LP PS EX/EX USD $17.12 Buy It Now 7 days
STYX: Crystal Ball LP (WLP, inner, punch hole, title toc, 3 sm clear tapes on t USD $25.00 Buy It Now 7 days
STYX Crystal Ball LP EX+ UK 1976 A&M Records USD $15.62 Buy It Now 8 days
JOB LOT OF THREE STYX LPs-Crystal Balls/Equinox/Paradise Theatre (Laser Etched)! USD $20.31 Buy It Now 8 days
STYX THE CRYSTAL BALL LP USD $4.00 Buy It Now 9 days
Crystal Ball Styx UK vinyl LP album record AMLH64604 A&M 1976 USD $21.81 Buy It Now 9 days
STYX Crystal Ball 1976 A&M LP SP-4604 EXC-/EXC w/lyric sleeve USD $6.00 Buy It Now 10 days
Equinox/crystal Ball - Styx New & Sealed Compact Disc Free Shipping USD $28.35 Buy It Now 10 days
Styx Crystal Ball lp 1976 A & M VG++ USD $5.00 Buy It Now 10 days
STYX - CRYSTAL BALL [STYX] [4988005546111] - NEW CD USD $33.02 Buy It Now 10 days
Crystal Ball - Styx New & Sealed CD Free Shipping USD $8.79 Buy It Now 10 days
STYX - CRYSTAL BALL - AA7502132182 USD $13.29 Buy It Now 11 days
STYX Crystal Ball Vinyl LP HOLLAND Pressing Put Me On Mademoiselle Jennifer USD $19.99 Buy It Now 11 days
Styx Crystal Ball LP EX A&M SP-4604 1976 w/Pic Sleeve USD $7.95 Buy It Now 11 days
Styx - Crystal Ball 1976 A&M SP-4606 NM/NM w/Sleeve S2/S4 USD $35.00 Buy It Now 11 days
STYX "CRYSTAL BALL" CASSETTE 1976 USD $4.89 Buy It Now 11 days
STYX Crystal Ball CASSETTE TAPE 1976 Made in Canada WHITE Classic Rock Album USD $10.99 Buy It Now 11 days
STYX "Crystal Ball" 1976 A&M Record Album LP USD $10.00 Buy It Now 11 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL VINYL LP AUSTRALIA issue L-36041 USD $13.85 Buy It Now 11 days
Equinox/Crystal Ball by Styx (CD, Mar-2006, Beat Goes On) USD $10.08 Buy It Now 11 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL JAPAN SHM MINI LP CD NEW OUT OF PRINT RARE UICY-93920 USD $91.99 Buy It Now 11 days
Crystal Ball by Styx (CD, Oct-1990, A&M (USA)) : Styx (CD, 1990) USD $5.38 Buy It Now 12 days
VINYL LP Styx - Crystal Ball A&M Records - SP-4604 USD $11.99 Buy It Now 12 days
STYX - Crystal Ball - 1988 - CD - CD 3218 - UPC 0 7502-13218-2 3 - 7 Tracks USD $6.99 Buy It Now 12 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALLS ALBUM SP4604 N.M. COND. USD $8.00 Buy It Now 12 days
Equinox/Crystal Ball - Styx (2006, CD New) USD $15.91 Buy It Now 13 days
Styx, 8 Track Tape,Tested,Crystal Ball,Put Me On,Shooz,Ballerina USD $9.99 Buy It Now 13 days
STYX - EQUINOX / CRYSTAL BALL NEW CD USD $25.51 Buy It Now 13 days
1976 - Styx - Crystal Ball - LP Record - A&M Records - SP-4604 USD $5.99 Buy It Now 13 days
STYX Crystal Ball + Girls Guns 2 LP lot US HAIR/HR/AOR pre-DAMN YANKEES MINT- USD $6.99 Buy It Now 14 days
STYX Equinox / Crystal Ball. BGO CD Dennis DeYoung Tommy Shaw, Suite Madame Blue USD $19.99 Buy It Now 14 days
LP - HOLLAND PRESS - STYX (CRYSTAL BALL)- 1976 - A&M AMLH 64604 + ORIGINAL INNER USD $15.00 Buy It Now 14 days
Crystal Ball by Styx (Cassette, Sep-1983, A&M Records) NEW USD $14.99 Buy It Now 14 days
Styx - Crystal Ball (Cassette, A&M) USD $2.98 Buy It Now 14 days
STYX The Crystal Ball A&M 1976 Rock USD $5.00 Buy It Now 14 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL LP RECORD LEE HULKO STERLING MASTER VG+ USD $11.20 Buy It Now 14 days
STYX Crystal Ball LP Vinyl NM 1976 Orig Sleeve Lyrics USD $8.99 Buy It Now 14 days
STYX Crystal Ball 8 Track tape USD $12.88 Buy It Now 14 days
CD . Styx . Crystal Ball . Limited Edition, Import USD $27.79 Buy It Now 14 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL DESGIN JAPAN MADE 8 X SHM MINI LP CD BOX SET VERY RARE! USD $649.99 Buy It Now 14 days
Styx - Equinox/Crystal Ball [CD New] USD $12.37 Buy It Now 14 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL VG ALBUM & VG COVER USD $3.85 Buy It Now 14 days
STYX: Crystal Ball LP (Canada, gold vinyl, sl cw) Rock & Pop USD $25.00 Buy It Now 15 days
CRYSTAL BALL BY STYX (CD) USD $12.00 Buy It Now 15 days
Styx "Crystal Ball" LP Pre-Owned USD $15.00 Buy It Now 15 days
STYX - CRYSTAL BALL [STYX] [075021321823] - NEW CD USD $4.88 Buy It Now 15 days
Styx - Crystal Ball - Vinyl LP USD $6.99 Buy It Now 16 days
Styx-Crystal Ball CD NEW USD $7.90 Buy It Now 17 days
Crystal Ball - Styx USD $5.99 Buy It Now 17 days
STYX - CRYSTAL BALL USD $9.99 Buy It Now 19 days
Styx: Crystal Ball. Vinyl LP - A&M, SP-4604, 1976. VG+ USD $4.99 Buy It Now 19 days
STYX ( CRYSTAL BALL ) 1976 U.S. A&M Records # 4604 VINYL white label PROMO LP NM USD $15.95 Buy It Now 19 days
Styx "Crystal Ball" 1976 Vinyl Record USD $9.98 Buy It Now 21 days
Styx 33rpm 5 LP Lot - Crystal Ball/Grand Illusion/Paradise Theatre/Cornerstone + USD $33.75 Buy It Now 21 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL SP 4906 VINYL LP 1976 SHRINK ORIG PRESS GREAT COND! VG+/VG+!! USD $10.99 Buy It Now 21 days
STYX Crystal Ball CD NEW & SEALED USD $7.74 Buy It Now 22 days
LP - Lot of 3 - Styx Crystal Ball - Firefall Elan - Deep Purple - USD $12.88 Buy It Now 22 days
Crystal Ball, Styx, New USD $6.41 Buy It Now 22 days
8 TRACK STYX CRYSTAL BALL 8 USD $6.99 Buy It Now 23 days
STYX Crystal Ball Ex A&M 1976 UK LP USD $10.90 Buy It Now 23 days
Styx - Crystal Ball - Original Vinyl Record USD $22.00 Buy It Now 24 days
STYX - Crystal Ball - 1976 Vinyl 12'' Lp.w/ Lyrics/ Prog. Hard Rock AOR USD $3.49 Buy It Now 24 days
STYX CRYSTAL BALL JAPAN EMPTY DISC UNION STORAGE BOX FOR MINI LP CD NEW USD $109.99 Buy It Now 24 days
5 STYX, CRYSTAL BALL Album Advert 12X5" USD $10.93 Buy It Now 24 days
Styx - Crystal Ball (OUT OF PRINT 100% Japanese Mini LP w/OBI) Hi Def. SHM-CD USD $59.95 Buy It Now 25 days
Styx - Crystal Ball Japan Vinyl LP Promo w/OBI AMP-6021 USD $19.99 Buy It Now 25 days
STYX Crystal Ball Rock n' Roll LP Record Album Vinyl Rare Vintage Music USD $10.00 Buy It Now 26 days
Styx - Crystal Ball Album - LP USD $19.99 Buy It Now 26 days
STYX LP CRYSTAL BALL A&M 4604 USD $6.99 Buy It Now 27 days
LP cornerstone ~ USD $23.45


More places to buy STYX music online Buy STYX & Prog Rock Digital Music online:
  • AmazonMP3: Search for STYX DRM-Free MP3 Downloads @ AmazonMP3 (USA Only) | AmazonMP3 (UK Only)

STYX Crystal Ball ratings distribution


3.10
(116 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(14%)
14%
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(31%)
31%
Good, but non-essential (36%)
36%
Collectors/fans only (16%)
16%
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)
3%

STYX Crystal Ball reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk
2 stars Just another album of Styx with its share of good songs. Notable as the first album for Tommy Shaw as he replaces so much better Curulewski, his songwriting adding up to the ensenble of good radio-friendly songs . He was the third writer as De Young and Young . The title track and the final one are the highlight on here

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to Sean Trane (BETA) | Report this review (#17362) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, February 04, 2004

Review by Matti
COLLABORATOR Neo-Prog Team
2 stars STYNX... A band I heard a little as a teen (Kilroy Was Here) and one of many to see connected to prog/ art rock, more or less to my surprise. And since the song 'Crystal Ball' evokes memories of my first love - featured in a cassette made by her - I gave Styx another chance with 2 euros (the first being even more awful Paradise Theater). I would have been pleased enough if the whole album had been hard rock ballads in the style of the title track, but rockers like 'Put Me On' are not my cup of tea. 'This Old Man' and 'Ballerina' with its Debussy intro are okay, but three mediocre songs is not enough. I hope there are better reasons (albums) for Styx to be here in the first place.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to Matti (BETA) | Report this review (#35839) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, June 09, 2005

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars I knew that this was not a great album but I knew that this album contained excellent tracks: "Crystal balls", "This Old Man" and probably "Clair de Lune / Ballerina". I still purchased the CD because judging from experiencefrom cassette format, "Crystal Ball" is truly different. It has beautiful combination between nice vocal, excellent acoustic guitar work and tight composition. This is the kind of song that you want to hear over and over even though it's pretty straight forward. It has nice melody and excellent songwriting. Style-wise, "This Old Man" is similar, it's only different in melody. These two songs are very accessible to those who like rock music in general. The other famous track is "Jennifer". Keep on rockin' ..! - GW

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#44312) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, August 26, 2005

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Prog Specialist
4 stars Many Progheads feel embarrassed to admit they like the music of STYX, probably because nobody knows for sure if we are talking about a Prog band, honestly I can't care less, even when I believe they recorded outstanding Prog material until "The Grand Illusion", the important issue here is the music and STYX really rocks.

"Crystal Ball" is a crucial album for the band, after several years and their most Progressive releases, John Curulewsky leaves the band and is replaced by Tommy Shaw, who despite his appearance of California Boy and hook with the feminine public, had an interest for Progressive Rock, while Dennis De Young progressively became more interested in POP, Tommy Shaw provided the balance between creativity and commercial success that the band required and was responsible for some of the best tracks the band ever released.

But we are talking about Crystal Ball, the first artistically solid album with economic success; after many years, STYX had ceased to be a local phenomenon of Chicago and gave the step to become icons of USA Rock.

The album starts with "Put Me On" and it's pompous into, where guitar and keyboards blend to create one of the most memorable songs in STYX's career. For the first time they trademarked chorus with at least four members singing simultaneously are used, while Dennis and JY take turns for the lead vocals. Contrasting sections, frantic rhythm, sold melody and outstanding guitar work open the album with the strength required to prove it is the dawn of a new era.

"Mademoiselle" is another track from this album that became a symbol of the band and was played along all their career in different concerts and gigs, this time Tommy Shaw takes the lead vocals and does a good job. Less frenetic than the precious but intelligently constructed, the song flows from start to end, another nice moment.

"Jennifer" is a power ballad with POP fugues, not the most memorable track from the band and soon forgotten after the release of the album, probably the most important characteristic of "Jennifer" are the excellent chorus that work perfectly with Dennis vocals. Not Prog at all, but very strong and solid Rock & Roll.

"Crystal Ball" is the first 100% Shaw song of the band, and must say that is outstanding, despite apparently being a simple ballad, has an excellent melody where Tommy gives every thing in his performance with a great backing by all the band and one of the best Moog solos by De Young. Would had liked a different ending rather than the bland fading, but despite this minor flaw, it's excellent material.

"Shooz" is probably the weakest track of the album is it wasn't because I saw the name in the tracklist, I would had not remembered this filler, no need to review it, just use the skip button.

"This Old Man" is one of this cases in which I can't understand how such an excellent song has been forgotten, De Young does an awesome job creating a dramatic atmosphere, his voice, even when no the best in town, blends perfectly with his own keyboards and JY's guitar, around the middle the dark and haunting mood is simply outstanding, a song that deserved a better destiny.

"Clair de Lune/Ballerina" starts with a fantastic Debussy rendition, but suddenly Dennis vocals replace the classical section for an interesting soft melody with a great job by JY in the guitar and a perfect supporting job by the Panozzo twins in the bass and drums, several dramatic changes that link perfectly one with the other proved us that this guys were ready for something greater, probably not as serious and complex as their first three releases, but if they wanted to be a massive band, the had to change, and they did it with class.

I will take the risk and rate "Crystal Ball" with 4 stars, a couple of weaker songs, plus the fact that the album is not a masterpiece, don't allow me to give a higher rating.

I know people will ask me "How could you rate so high a barely Prog album?" and I will answer "Who cares, I consider it essential for any Rock collection". If it's Prog great, if it's not Prog in a traditional sense.It's a prove that there is great music outside the Prog scenario.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to Ivan_Melgar_M (BETA) | Report this review (#182727) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Team
2 stars Put me on, put me off

The previous Equinox album had taken the sound and style of early Styx and streamlined it, giving it a more glossy production and strengthened their Pop sensibilities and thereby gearing it towards more mainstream audiences and the FM radio. Maybe they felt that they went too far in that direction because with Crystal Ball they reverted slightly toward their old style; this album rocks harder compared to the very lightweight Equinox. Indeed, several tracks remind me slightly of Rainbow!

The progressive side of the band is still here, but it wears rather thin on this album. The opener Put Me On is a basic, melodic Hard Rock song and Shoots is an abomination of middle-of-the-road hard Rock 'N' Roll and is so ordinary and generic that it becomes silly. This song is anti-progressive and it too reminds me of (the very worst sides of) Rainbow and Deep Purple from the late 70's/early 80's. The rest of this album, however, is quite enjoyable!

Crystal Ball was the first album with Tommy Shaw in the band and he contributes the very good title track. The title track is among the best songs and it is a nice semi-ballad with softer acoustic verses and a harder rocking chorus. This song also remind me slightly of Rainbow, but this time it is more in line with the good era of that band (i.e. the Ronnie James Dio-era). Mademoiselle reminds me slightly of 10cc, which is not a very good thing! Jennifer is hardly remarkable (as few songs with female first names as titles are) but still a quite ok song with an adlib chorus.

Like of Equinox, the more progressive songs are towards the end and also like on that album, this album too ends with its longest track which, once again, consisting of two parts. The first part being a classical piece by Claude Debussy. As a side note I can mention that this has also been performed by Rick Wakeman.

Crystal Ball is one of the more typical Styx albums. It was the beginning of a new era in the band's history and even if they would make a better album after this one, Crystal Ball is still one of the better Styx albums with only a few weak and distracting moments. I generally prefer this over Equinox, but it is not a remarkable step forward by any means.

Two (and a half) stars.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to SouthSideoftheSky (BETA) | Report this review (#227604) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, July 20, 2009

Review by snobb
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars First Styx album with Tommy Shaw. Very melodic, heavily orchestrated pop-hard-rock (or AOR) with choral vocals. Whenever they have some catchy melodies and have some attractive moments in their songs, the albums isn't as bad as could be.

Music is slightly connected with prog-rock, using elements of pop-hard-rock and prog- rock both. Technically musicians are far from virtuosity, but as prog-related band are attractive enough to be listened.

Different from their very early raw rocky works, this album contains many elements of typical Styx style ( characteristic sound for their moment of popularity). However still not polished and balanced till their final product. 50/50 of good/bad songs proportion.

I don't think this album could be interesting for people outside of Styx fan club. Somewhere around 2,5.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to snobb (BETA) | Report this review (#262945) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Review by b_olariu
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Crystal ball is their sixth album from 1976 and is a big release in Styx career. Styx always combined in a good manner pomp rock with grand orchestrations and aswell have a good doze of progressive elements, but they were less progressive then their country fellows Kansas for ex. They manage to go shoulder to shoulder in second half of the '70 's with Kansas being the most well known bands in USA in thet times. Already from this album appears a hit Mademoiselle, the band got more and more fans, their combination of art rock with pompous arrangements over some progressive elements get the attention to most of the audience in midd to late '70 's in american scene. The rrangements were very good composed, with realy solid progressive elements like opening track Put Me On, maybe the best piece from here, aswell a new member arrived Tommy Show who brings a fresh air, he did both vocals and guitars in Styx music. This album , is less consistent then Equinox but far better then Man of miracles, the a passages are well constructed, more progressive elements are arranged here, givig overall a good release, maybe for some listners who considered Styx a commercial band with not much to do with prog, this album, the next one and the one before will show a solid song writting for sure with a clear progressive side on almost all pieces. This album desearve 3 stars , at least from my side, not among my fav from them, the two album remeining my fav are the previous one Equinox and next one Grand illusion. Still a fairly good and decent work.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to b_olariu (BETA) | Report this review (#308501) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, November 06, 2010

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Shaw arrives as Styx version-two ascends

After the release of their first A&M album "Equinox," John Curulewski decided to leave Styx in a move that has to be near the top of the list of "most ill-timed band departures." After struggling for so long he just missed the big time. Then again, it is unlikely they would have reached the heights they did with him in the group. JC was not popular with many in the Styx circle, he not only butted heads with DeYoung but he was described as quite negative by others. However, he was undeniably talented and officially he left to spend more time with family. At his last gig he was rebuffed by DeYoung for not cutting it, and he quit on the spot. Styx now needed a replacement and they needed one fast. When someone suggested Tommy Shaw the others were more concerned about his vocals than his guitar playing. While Shaw was never all that impressive to me as a solo artist, he gave Styx what they needed to complete the puzzle. A very versatile guitarist, a good live performer, another songwriter, and most importantly, a guy who could fit into the high parts of their killer three-part vocal attacks. They flew Shaw in and asked him to sing the high part of "Lady" as his audition. DeYoung asked him to join on the spot. Styx was complete and ready for a level of success that would see them surpass the Stones, the Beatles, and Zeppelin by releasing FOUR triple-platinum albums in a row. If I'm not mistaken, no other band had ever done that. "Crystal Ball" was not one of those high-sales albums, but it was a fine introduction for Tommy Shaw to the public.

Crystal Ball feels very similar to Equinox to me despite the change in personnel, but shows modest growth. Styx were now improving with each release. They always had formidable talent but it took them longer than others to reach their creative peak and make albums that showed off their full ability. Crystal Ball is just one step below that peak. The title track was given to Shaw, quite a vote of confidence in their newest member. It's a succinct but dramatic classic Styx track with light, emotional verses and a pumped-up, powerful chorus with those great vocals. The song made a huge impression on one teenage girl who was struggling with suicidal thoughts and drug problems. She wrote to Shaw about it, and in turn he flew to her hometown and met her family, getting involved in an attempt to help this girl. I thought that was a pretty amazing move for the young musician.

"Shooz" and "Put Me On" are somewhat underwhelming to me, the former being stock hard rock without enough sizzle, the latter being a predictable song but with a peaceful, lovely section during DeYoung's vocal. The album featured a great single in DeYoung's "Mademoiselle" which was a strong example of early collaboration between DeYoung and Shaw. A sophisticated art-pop track with lots of pomp and a nice use of rhythm guitars to ground the song. A special mention goes to the warm and sentimental "This Old Man" which DeYoung writes for his father. It is a loving tribute and another example of how family was important to him and perhaps another reason the band were targets for derision. While other rockers had wives and families that were important to them, not all were willing to risk being uncool to speak about them in such direct terms. While it may have cost them some cool points at the time, the messages in many Styx songs resonate and hold up years later as positive and refreshing. The album closes with the proggy "Clair de Lune/Ballerina" which begins with a wonderful classical interpretation by DeYoung, and ends with a blazing war of guitars between Young and Shaw. In this song, the title track, and "Mademoiselle", you can hear the elements of where the band would be heading very soon.

Styx is a great American rock band despite what you been told by the misguided Styx-haters. Despite a few misses their 70s canon delivers an armful of amazingly likable works. Crystal Ball is full of great moments though it falls just shy of 4 stars for me. 3 stars. Still it is well worth investigating for fans of "America's answer to Queen" as some refer to them.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to Finnforest (BETA) | Report this review (#445016) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, May 09, 2011

Review by stefro
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Album number six, which was issued in '76 during the sixth year of Styx's professional career, 'Crystal Ball' continues the upward curve witnessed on the previous years 'Equinox', though quite what the number six has to do with this American prog-rock outfit is anybody's guess. After the crude-yet-enjoyable machinations of their ambitious, Copland-inspired debut and the refined class of follow-up Styx II, the Chicago-based outfit hit something of a duff patch before the belated single success of 'Lady' catapulted the five-piece into the national American eye. But first the duff patch; personified by two poorly-received albums, both 'The Serpent Is Rising' and 'Man Of Miracles' managed to severely over-egg the sonic pudding with far too much sub-prog-rock excess, and not enough pomp-pop colour. However, for 'Crystal Ball', the balance was re-aligned. A catchy, hard-rockin', colourful and rather adventurous set, 'Crystal Ball' finds Styx laying the groundwork for the series of excellent and career-defining albums that were to come, the likes of 'Cornerstone', 'The Grand Illusion' and 'Pieces Of Eight', whilst also proving a damn fine album itself. Tracks such as the bluesy rocker 'Shooz', the yearning, fast-paced balladry of 'Jennifer' and the seven-and-a-half-minute closer 'Clair De Lune / Ballerine' ooze hard-rock finesse, the group's synthesized rock sound bursting forth thanks to an impressive and vibrant production. Those who enjoy the classic Styx albums should find much to enjoy here then, with 'Crystal Ball' proving one of the higher peaks scaled by this hugely underrated 1970's outfit. It may not be progressive rock English style, yet in the end who gives a damn. Styx can rock out with the best of 'em, and 'Crystal Ball' is clear proof. STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2013

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Send comments to stefro (BETA) | Report this review (#913181) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Latest members reviews

4 stars I will state right up front that I love this record. It was one of my favorite LP's in high school, and I probably listened to it 100 times. I don't understand why Crystal Ball isn't given the same respect as Equinox. Crystal Ball isn't any less progressive in my book. Every song on this alb ... (read more)

Report this review (#1295312) | Posted by thwok | Thursday, October 23, 2014 | Review Permanlink

3 stars It's 1976, and Styx has a new member in Tommy Shaw. Is anything lost from their awesome Equinox album? Well, maybe some. This is a solid album, but it doesn't compare to Grand Illusion, Pieces of Eight, or Equinox. The first 2 rockers, "Put me On" and "Mademoiselle" are fine classic Styx rocke ... (read more)

Report this review (#275608) | Posted by mohaveman | Tuesday, March 30, 2010 | Review Permanlink

2 stars I had heard once (can't remember where) that Styx was perfect band for 13 year old boys, because they were all about bold emotions and big gestures. Depth of feeling wasn't implied, it was poured out in bucketloads. I have to admit that I was on of those 13 year olds who feel in love with the ban ... (read more)

Report this review (#61222) | Posted by DantesRing | Wednesday, December 21, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This is one of the two Styx discs that I give a perfect rating and it's worth every bit of that 5 stars!!! I understand that most people think "The Grand Illusion" is the group's greatest achievement, and it is certainly one of the 70's most loved albums, but "Crystal Ball" is the perfect alb ... (read more)

Report this review (#40248) | Posted by silversaw | Monday, July 25, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The first album to feature new guitarist/vocalist Tommy Shaw as a member of the band is an interesting entity. While not as strong as some other albums, there are tracks buried in the mix that showcase Styx as a band beginning to spread their wings and take flight. "Crystal Ball" stands as one of ... (read more)

Report this review (#17361) | Posted by | Friday, December 26, 2003 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of STYX "Crystal Ball"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

WARNING: Forum software upgrade in progress, login function maybe affected for some users during that time.

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — the ultimate jazz music virtual community | MetalMusicArchives.com — the ultimate metal music virtual community


Server processing time: 1.26 seconds