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Styx - Equinox CD (album) cover




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3.48 | 188 ratings

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3 stars After enjoying what I've heard on The Grand Illusion and Pieces Of Eight, I continued forwards in Styx discography with Cornerstone and all the way to Edge Of The Century. I found their '80s material slightly weaker than the golden era tracks, from the late '70s, and so the logical step was to reverse my direction and go backwards in Styx discography!

Equinox was released in 1975 and is the final album featuring John Curulewski before Tommy Shaw took over the songwriting, guitar and vocal duties in the band. The overall feel of the album isn't far from that on The Grand Illusion and Pieces Of Eight but I lack a real standout track here even though a few come close!

Dennis DeYoung does a great job with the opening track Light Up which definitely sets the mood for the listener and the record continues to shine with the rock anthem Lorelei, eclectic sounding Mother Dear and the ballad Lonely Child. Unfortunately this is where it all comes to a halt once James Young gets a moment in the spotlight with his pretty bland songwriting and vocal skills on Midnight Ride. The song just doesn't do it for me and feels completely out of place with the rest of the material; a track that I tend to skip.

Born For Adventure continues the trend of blandness even though the composition itself is not too bad. It's a pity that the chorus really ruins this song and no matter how much I try I just can't enjoy this track. Fortunately the remaining two tracks manage to rebuild some of the momentum that was featured on the first four tracks.

Prelude 12 is a short but very necessary instrumental by John Curulewski that works as an interlude between the two bland rockers and the Styx classic known as Suite Madame Blue. This final track is one of those instances that I kind of wish that the band could have been even more creative in their writing. The track has a strong melody and the opening interlude makes it seem that we are going to be treated to an opus. This promise unfortunately never manifests itself and the 6+ minutes go faster than I would have liked them to. I strongly believe that Suite Madame Blue could have been one of the definite progressive rock tracks if only Styx had the nerve to transform it into a 10+ minute composition by adding a couple of instrumental passages.

The overall feel that I get from Equinox is that Styx is definitely getting on the right track with this record but they lack the creative chemistry between Tommy Shaw and Dennis DeYoung. Good, but non-essential album for fans of melodic art rock music.

**** star songs: Light Up (4:19) Lorelei (3:23) Mother Dear (5:30) Lonely Child (3:49) Prelude 12 (1:20) Suite Madame Blue (6:30)

*** star songs: Midnight Ride (4:19) Born For Adventure (5:16)

Rune2000 | 3/5 |


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