Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Dennis DEYOUNG Styx: "Live In Los Angeles"

Rating: Live
Label: Frontiers 2014
Review by: Urban "Wally" Wallstrom

Kudos to Dennis DeYoung for performing all the classic old songs of Styx as he wrote many of them. He's still a great performer and the voice is if not exactly the same then at least very intact indeed as the pipes sound excellent. Live In Los Angeles was recorded and mixed by the man and he brought along a six person strong backing band including his wife since 44 years, Mrs Suzanne DeYoung on background vocals. Would it be extremely rude to remark on Mrs. DeYoung's as she looks smashing and no, I'm not going to type for her age. Hint why Dennis wrote "Babe" as a celebration to her charisma and grace (what the hell?) all those years ago and I believe it's still the biggest hit of Styx?

They kick off the concert with Pomp classics such as "Grand Illusion" and "Lady" and you wouldn't believe that Dennis is nearly 70 as he sounds strong and confident as always. The pros and cons of Live In Los Angeles are pretty much the same thing as DeYoung's not just delivering the Styx songs he wrote and sung himself. Nope. You also get the likes of 'Blue Collar Man', 'Foolin’ Yourself', 'Too Much Time On My Hands', etc. Unfortunately featuring one of the fellows from the rather unknown backup band on lead vocals (August Zadra?) and it's just not the same as the real thing, you know.

In between stage banter from DeYoung include highlights such as and I quote, "How many people right now tonight are seeing Styx live for the first time in their lives? [audience roar] Where the hell have you been? I'm 67 for christ' sake". I actually expected more of DeYoungs solo material and not just Desert Moon. Anyhow, it's great to see and hear the man live as he still deliver the goods. It's just that it sometimes feels like a cover/tribute band when the backup patrol gets to shine in the spotlight. Nice.

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