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Shaw - Blades
shawblades.com
www.myspace.com/shawbladesinfluence
CD Reviews
Influence
Review by Michael Bader
Influence is the second and latest release from Damn Yankees members, guitarist Tommy Shaw and bassist Jack Blades. Consider the hard hitting musical history of these musicians as key members of bands like Night Ranger and Styx.
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Various Artists - 108 Rock Star Guitars written by Lisa S. Johnson
Review by G. W. Hill

This is the quintessential coffee table book. That’s particularly true for those who love guitars.


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Tommy Shaw - and The Contemporary Youth Orchestra -Sing for the Day BluRay
Review by Gary Hill

Tommy Shaw (along with featured guitarist and sometime vocalist Will Evankovich) is joined by a full orchestra. They make their way through a killer set of songs in this configuration, lending a new and quite proggy flavor.

 

The video is shot very well. It is obvious that the crew and director were well-versed in the new arrangements as they know just when to cut to which instrument. The sound is also impeccable.

 

While the bulk of the set is made up of Styx music, there are also songs from other parts of Shaw’s career. For a lot of the set Shaw plays acoustic guitar (and even mandolin), but there are electric moments, too. The guitar solo on “Crystal Ball” shines tall as one of those. One of the highlights of the show for me is “Man in the Wilderness” because I really love that song and this version is such a cool variant on it. It is another that features electric guitar, Shaw going from acoustic to electric mid-track.

 

The only bonus material here is some audio-only songs. My one complaint about this is that there are bits of interview interspersed amongst the music. I wish there was a way to play just the concert and skip those, but I don't see an option for doing that. Still, this is a great experience either way.


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Styx - And The Contemporary Youth Orchestra-One With Everything CD
Review by Gary Hill
Recording an album with an orchestra has become almost a clichéd idea these days. Many discs done this way are pretty pathetic or at least trivialized and gimmicky. This album is one of the exceptions to that.
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Styx - And The Contemporary Youth Orchestra-One With Everything DVD
Review by Gary Hill
For a while it seemed like Styx were making a lot of mistakes and missteps. Starting with the brilliant Big Bang Theory they seem to have the right ideas again.
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Various Artists - Back Against the Wall
Review by Gary Hill
There are few people who haven't at least heard of Pink Floyd's The Wall. I would hazard to say that those who have never heard the album are in the minority as well.
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Styx - Big Bang Theory
Review by Gary Hill
There are those who don't give a second glance to albums of covers. Well, in this case that would be a big mistake.
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Styx - Brave New World
Review by Greg Olma

This particular release from Styx is often overlooked but for the life of me,


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Styx - Caught in the Act
Review by Gary Hill

I have to say that, while this CD set is entertaining, after seeing the current lineup of Styx live, and comparing it to this, I think they, ultimately are a stronger band without Dennis DeYoung than they would have been had he continued in the group. 


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Styx - Cornerstone
Review by Greg Olma
When Styx released Cornerstone, they seemed to switch directions after the relatively harder Pieces Of Eight.  Here, the band gave Dennis DeYoung a little bit more space to explore his musical leanings. 
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Styx - Crystal Ball
Review by Gary Hill
Crystal Ball was the first Styx album to feature Tommy Shaw and his sound and influence can be heard here – at least at times. In many ways, though, this album feels a lot like its predecessor Equinox.
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Styx - Grand Illusion / Pieces of Eight – Live BluRay
Review by G. W. Hill

Looking at this BluRay, there are a number of levels on which to comment.


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Robby Krieger - In Session
Review by Gary Hill
This compilation disc is quite strong. There is really a lot of great music here.

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Styx - Live at the Orleans Arena Las Vegas
Review by G. W. Hill

This brand new live album from Styx is exactly what you’d expect.


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Styx - Live At The Orleans Arena Las Vegas BluRay
Review by G. W. Hill
I have to say that Styx is a pretty amazing band live. If anything, they are better today than they were in the 70s.

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Styx - Live in Albany, Oregon, August 2012
Review by Larry Toering
Getting out to see Styx did not come easy, as this concert at the Oregon Amphitheater was during the Arts and Air Festival, and it was free, so it was actually packed beyond capacity.
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Styx - Live in Rockford, IL, August, 2008
Review by Gary Hill
Many more pics from this show are in our members' area
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Styx - Live in Rockford, Illinois, June 2016
Review by Eric Meli
The Coronado Theater was built in 1927 and is a perfect setting for a band like Styx.
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Styx - Paradise Theater
Review by Gary Hill
This is a concept album but the story line doesn’t really seem all that consistent.
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Styx - Paradise Theater (Limited Edition Hybrid SACD version)
Review by G. W. Hill

I’ve previously reviewed the original version of this album. This rendition is a new reissue that’s a high audio quality version.


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Enuff Z'nuff - Paraphenalia
Review by Gary Hill
Showcasing potent pop/rock sensibilities and Beatles influences throughout, this is a very strong showing from this band. Its catchy melodies and intriguing arrangements should please most rock music fans.
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Styx - Pieces of Eight
Review by Gary Hill
When I think back about this album, without digging it out again, I find myself tuning into the harder rocking side of the disc.

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Various Artists - Pure Fire - The Ultimate Kiss Tribute
Review by Gary Hill

This is a reissue of an older Kiss tribute album. It was originally called "Spin the Bottle," and I remember seeing it around that first time out.


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Styx - Regeneration Volume I & II
Review by G. W. Hill

Styx has been selling this CD set as separate discs at their shows for a while, but it’s now been released as a two CD set for sale everywhere. 


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Various Artists - Rockin' the City of Angels written by Douglas Harr
Review by G. W. Hill
This book is something very special. A good tag-line for this would be "come for the pictures, stay for the stories."

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Styx - Styxworld Live
Review by Gary Hill
This live disc from the latest lineup of Styx should please long-time fans, but it really does have a few flaws. The first flaw is the lack of Dennis DeYoung.
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Styx - The Grand Illusion
Review by Gary Hill
Yeah, I know, Styx aren’t a progressive rock band. Well, listen to this disc (I’m sure you’ve heard it a million times) again with a fresh ear.

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Styx - The Grand Illusion/Pieces of Eight Live
Review by G. W. Hill

I reviewed the DVD of this thing a while back. I love it.


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Styx - The Mission
Review by Gary Hill
I know that Styx fans have fallen into two camps, the DeYoung people who claim that this version of Styx isn't really Styx and those  who support this lineup.

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Various Artists - We Wish You a Metal Christmas And a Headbanging New Year (2010 Edition)
Review by Gary Hill
This is a reissue of a CD I’ve already reviewed – with a few extra cuts.
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Various Artists - We Wish You a Metal Xmas...and a Headbanging New Year
Review by Gary Hill

So many times discs like this are really uneven. Well, that’s not the case here.


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