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Styx - Styx CD (album) cover

STYX

Styx

 

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2.80 | 117 ratings

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Casiglio
2 stars Styx in the early seventies were an intriguing band. Obviously influenced by ELP and to a lesser extent Yes they also seemed to have commercial/hard rock aspirations. I find the first few albums (released on Wooden Nickle) very interesting in a "what could have been" in the sense that they were clearly talented musicians with creative ideas. But the band sounds as if they are trying to veer off in multiple directions.

The most intriguing track on the album is the first: "Movement for the Common Man". Part hard rock song, part prog anthem it's full off all the pomp and pretension that one might expect from a bunch of kids trying to immitate ELP, etc. (although it's worth pointing out that their guitar driven cover of the Copeland theme predates Emerson by several years ...). It's overly long, but a fun piece at parts ... the highlights being a series of taped interviews where people on the street (the 'common man' ... I get it!) complain about the youth of the day ... which then segues into their guitar driven take on Copeland's theme.

The other track of note is "Best Thing", which would be a forgettable seveties rocker, except for the lighting quick, dynamite Hammond work from Dennis DeYoung. The remaining three tracks ARE forgettable seventies rockers. "Right Away" is Styx trying to sound like Lynard Skynard (if you can picture that ...), while in "Quick is the Beat of my Heart" you can hear an early version of the power ballad style that the band would perfect in their later years. The closing track, "After You Leave Me" is frankly just very weak.

"Movement ..." is worth listening to at some point, especially if you're familiar with Styx' later work and are interested in hearing some of their roots. Beyond that, if you're just looking to sample Styx' early catelog you're probably much better off picking up Styx II, or one of the several samplers that cover the time period.

| 2/5 |

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