Recent Music Reviews
Following is my review of:
STYX - Live: The Grand Illusion/Pieces of Eight
A double live CD featuring the band's current line-up plus original bass player Chuck Panozzo, performing the whole of tow of their classic 1970's albums - 'The Grand Illusion' and 'Pieces Of Eight'. There are also a DVD and BluRay versions of this album as well.
Taking 'The Grand Illusion' first you have many songs on here that are still live set staples like 'Fooling Yourself', 'Miss America' and 'Come Sail Away' (drummer Todd Sucherman has a ball on this one!). The real interest lies in the lesser performed numbers such as 'Superstars' - a chance for the band to show off their harmonies and the pomptastic 'The Grand Finale'.
The second disc though is the one that really sees the pomp rock quota set to max. Lawrence Gowan ably sings the Dennis de Young songs and also really adds some showmanship to the keyboard parts on the instrumental piece 'The Message' and 'Lords Of The Ring'. Again the band leave the listener marveling at their harmony vocals on 'I'm Okay', a song that defines all that is good in pomp rock for me. The title track is the only song that doesn't seem to come alive on the stage, sounding as though it is outlasting its welcome.
It's not another live Styx album (along with REO Speedwagon, Styx were releasing live albums on a regular basis from the mid-90's onwards) as it has the current (and arguably one of the best) line-up performing two of the band's classic albums that made their name back in the day. Unlikely they will ever do this over here in the UK so a real treat and an essential album for all the band's many fans.