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Styx - Cyclorama CD (album) cover




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3.20 | 70 ratings

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5 stars Do you wonder what the cover is all about on this Styx CD? I do. It may refer to the proverbial dangling carrot, who knows. In the booklet with the CD, there are references to carrots throughout; it is a mystery to me. There is one thing I am certain of though, this band still kicks ass going into their fourth decade of recording. Those of you still whining about Dennis De Young not being with the band, get over it, he is gone. They are unaffected by his absence, and seem to be doing just fine. They have a new fresh lineup that sounds fantastic; in fact, if they did not have that shakeup they probably would not have survived as a band and you would be reading solo album reviews of JY and Tommy Shaw material on a more regular basis than a Styx review.

Everyone gets equal time in this band with each member contributing songs and vocals. A real nice mix gives them a range that they did not have in the classic rock '70s lineup. Those were great times with many memorable albums recorded. In 2003, you can chalk up another one for them in the classic albums category. At one time, they were a leading progressive rock band; now they are a great rock 'n' roll band, plain and simple. That works just fine and dandy for me thank you very much.

There are so many great tunes on this album. The lead off track "Do Things My Way" has hit single written all over it. Loaded with smart hooks while rocking along hard to maintain their familiar sound, this song will not get out of your head any time soon. The thing I really appreciate about these guys is that you can always understand what they are singing. A lot of the time, I base my reviews on music alone because I cannot understand a blasted word. I guarantee by the time you listen to this album the second time you will be singing right along. They have a good sense of humor and use their lyrics to point at the truths of the heart and the irony that life can bring. "Bourgeois Pig" and "Kiss Your Ass Goodbye" are prime examples of that attitude and approach to their presentation. I thought the time machine effect of using a song from Grand Illusion was cool in "Fooling Yourself (Palm Of Your Hands)," which runs only 39 seconds, then launches into a rockin' track called "Captain America." "Waiting For Our Time" is another killer track and one that will become a favorite at concerts I am sure. All of their music comes complete with soaring vocals and harmonies bolstered by lively guitars, the trademark of this band. JY and Tommy play and sing as if their lives depended on it. I think that it keeps them young and hungry. They are more than the core element of this band, they push the other group members to levels that they have never been before. There is some electric chemistry going on here, which is a rare thing in any group that has been around as long as they have.

Okay youngsters, you think this is an old group that Mom and Dad used to listen to, well, that may be true but they still can rock your soul today just as they did when they started back in the day. Very few bands can do that in this day age and you can read me my last rights if it is not true.

Muzikman | 5/5 |


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