Styx (1972-1984, 1990-1991, 1995-present): a Hard Rock band from Chicago, Illinois, USA.


merican rock band Styx started operation in Chicago in 1972 and is best known for melding hard rock guitar balanced with acoustic guitar, synthesizers mixed with acoustic piano, upbeat tracks with power ballads, and incorporating elements of international musical theater. The band established itself with a progressive rock sound in the 1970s, and began to incorporate pop rock and soft rock elements in the 1980s. On its conception, Styx featured the membership of John "J.C." Curulewski (guitar/backing and lead vocals/keyboards; R.I.P. 1988), Dennis DeYoung (keyboards/lead and backing vocals), John Panozzo (drums/percussion; R.I.P. 1996), Chuck Panozzo (bass/occasional backing vocals) and James "J.Y." Young (guitars/lead and backing vocals/occasional keyboards).

Beginning with their self-titled debut in 1972, Styx, on average, released an album every year throughout the 1970s with Styx II (1973) featuring the sleeper hit Lady, a power ballad which reached 6 in the US, helping the album make the top 20. Lady also broke the chart at 20 in Canada, Australia and New Zealand. After The Serpent Is Rising (1973) and Man of Miracles (1974), Equinox (1975) and Crystal Ball (1976) reached the US top 70 with the first featuring Lorelei, reaching 6 in Canada, while the second marked the addition of Tommy Shaw (guitars/lead and backing vocals/occasional mandolin) to the band.

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Styx's commercial breakthrough in North America came with The Grand Illusion (1977), which peaked at 6 in both the US and Canada, and became the first of four straight triple-platinum albums in the US. It featured the single Come Sail Away, a top 10 hit in both countries. The band's follow-up, Pieces of Eight (1978), was another 6 hit in the US, but peaked higher in Canada due to the top 10 hits Renegade and Blue Collar Man (Long Nights). 1979's, Cornerstone fetched 2 in both countries on the strength of the cross-border #1 hit ballad Babe. The album became their breakthrough in Australia and New Zealand, reaching the top 20, with Babe peaking at 3. The track was 6 hit in the UK, their first and only top 40 hit there; the album receiving 36 overall.

The follow-up, Paradise Theater (1981) was a #1 album in the US and Canada, while also reaching the top 10 in Scandinavia and the UK (their biggest album there) and the top 30 in Australia and New Zealand.

Kilroy Was Here (1983) would be Styx's last major hit album by reaching top 3 in North America and the top 10 in Scandinavia, although it was less successful elsewhere. Its lead single, Mr. Roboto, became Styx's third chart-topper in Canada and a #3 hit in the US, as well as becoming their biggest hit in Germany at #8.

After a seven-year break, Styx returned with Edge of the Century (1990) reaching 63 in the US with its single, Show Me the Way. Their remaining discography of Brave New World (1999), Cyclorama (2003), Big Bang Theory (2005), The Mission (2017) and Crash of the Crown (2021), although competent, failed to receive the fame of their forefathers. The 2021 line-up featuring Todd Sucherman (drums/percussion, occasional backing vocals), Lawrence Gowan (keyboards/lead and backing vocals/occasional acoustic guitar), Ricky Phillips (bass/backing vocals/part-time guitar) and Will Evankovich (guitar/backing vocals) along side Chuck Panozzo and James "J.Y." Young with Glen Burtnik (guitar/backing and lead vocals/bass/backing and lead vocals) as a past member.

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Nation USA
Location Chicago, Illinois
Genre Hard Rock
Formations 3
Active Years 1972-1984, 1990-1991, 1995-
Last Modified 2023-02-28
Diskery ID 2177

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