Fireworks

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Styx - 'The Grand Illusion / Pieces Of Eight - Live' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/dc/09/c0/2231_styxthegrandillusionpiecesofeight_1338571524.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     June 01, 2012    
 
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A terrific representation of a still vital performing unit.

It’s taken a while for the CDs and DVD of this show to appear it taking over a year from performance to release. Fortunately the wait has been well worth it because this is a terrific representation of a still vital performing unit. It helps that they have plenty of great material to work and the two albums they play in their entirety here are arguably their high water mark in that respect. Having the screen projecting a film of a fan sorting through their albums, plucking out ‘The Grand Illusion’ and placing it on the turntable is a neat opening to the show.

I’ll get my criticisms out the way early so I can concentrate on the many positives. There are too many songs without proper endings, I despise the cacophony style conclusion to songs and I’m afraid Styx use it way too often. You’d think a band of this quality could devise something more meaningful to bring a song to a close thus replacing the fade out section used on album. On the DVD Lawrence Gowan can be seen playing his keyboard with his hands behind his back. Showmanship it may be but doing it once is interesting, more than that is boring.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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What is clear is that this band can still perform to the highest standard and in Tommy Shaw they have an absolute star (I’d love to see him at Firefest doing his solo material. I can dream, can’t I?) whose brilliance shines through on every track but most notably on ‘Foolin’ Yourself’, ‘Man in the Wilderness’, ‘Blue Collar Man’ and ‘Renegade’. His guitar playing is, as is James Young’s (JY) quite superb throughout. Drummer Todd Sucherman is sensational and dare I say under-rated, in that he plays like a demon with power and finesse in equal measure. Gowan is the perfect replacement for Dennis De Young in that he doesn’t miss a beat with the keyboards but also vocally can handle the De Young songs without coming across as if he is merely mimicking. Ricky Phillips does a fine job on bass and backing vocals; sharing bass duties with Chuck Panozzo who appears from time to time.

While Shaw’s vocals are spot on it has to be said that JY does struggle a bit, not least because the songs where he leads are rather demanding, but I think he gets away with it. The band nails the harmony vocals and preserves the classic Styx sound. The DVD also shows how consummate they are with presentation. The moves may be choreographed, but if they are it’s not at all obvious as the players swap places and move around the stage whilst never missing a cue.

The idea was to play these albums in order but it’s a slightly flat conclusion with ‘Aku-Aku’ and I think I’d have switched that with ‘Pieces of Eight’ which would have taken the show out on a high.

Gary Marshall

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  • SeaDog57 : just an observation. I just got Issue 89 at the Bookstore and when i looked at the spine of the magazine it says "Fireworks Issue 85 Winter Jan - Mar 2019" Was this a misprint? The rest of the Magazine is Issue 89. Was just wondering did anyone else notice this?
  • Berny : Apologies! Magazine can now be accessed from your download section. Best wishes, B.
  • Berny : @Martykelly: We're sorry
  • Martykelly : Just purchased issue 89 hoping its going to be in my download soon.
  • Johns Band : Will "Watch & Listen" music videos make a comeback. Just order H.E.A.T. "Live In London" CD.
  • Berny : @the trapps: Apologies for the delay in processing your order. The magazine is now available in your downloads section.
  • the trapps : waiting for the issue 89 which we purchased to be in our downloads section ???
  • Berny : @tomandpam: Many thanks for your purchase. The download instructions were sent yesterday, please contact me at «email» should you haven't received the email.
  • tomandpam : I paid for a download on issue 89 and didn't receive the download. Please let me know when I can get it. Thanks
  • Berny : @zom414: Fireworks Magazine #89 will be available at selected UK based newsagents on December 16th. The digital version can already be purchased in our Download Store.
  • zom414 : When's the next mag due for release?
  • Berny : @el nowy: Apologies for the delay in processing your order. Pls. check your mail!
  • el nowy : Hi, how long does it take for my download license to be available? I purchased it 3 days ago. Thanks!
  • Rocktopia Te : @l.thijs: Apologies for the delay, your digital copy can now be downloaded from your "My Downloads" section.
  • l.thijs : Hi Fireworks Magazine. I made a purchase on 10 nov and I paid by Paypall. I bought the #85 fireworks mag download for GBP3,50. But I didn,t receive anything. Please can you find out what's going on?
  • kazooba : I have digital versions of every issue from 27 thru 88, any way I can get issues 1 - 26 with cd's digitally?
  • Berny : @SeaDog57: The links are in the Fireworks menu. Have you tried scrolling down? Maybe your screen size is too small...
  • SeaDog57 : Berny; there are only links up to Fireworks 86. Which is kinda strange because i already downloaded CD 87 but i'm looking for the link to CD 88...Chris
  • Rocktopia Te : @Johns Band: Can you please contact us here: «email»
  • Johns Band : Fireworks Magazine 88 did not arrive by post. paid by PayPal. Any Suggestion.
  • Berny : @bpomper: Can you pls. contact the Rocktopia team here: «email»
  • bpomper : i found the problem..old email i can not access.i have tried to change it by editing my info but it wont allow. any suggestions
  • Berny : @bpomper: A reply was sent yesterday, We recommend checking your spam/junk mail to see if our message was filtered there. The magazine was already sent to your shipping address. Please let me know if you do not receive it within the next couple of days. Thanks for your patience!
  • bpomper : Thanks didnt of that. I still have not heard about fireworks 88 was it sent out. Thankyou
  • Rocktopia Te : @bpomper: For security reasons, we removed your previous message. Please do not post your private e - mail address. Many thanks for your understanding.
  • bpomper : Thanks for the reply. I see download but can you confirm that hardcopy was or is sent ou .thanks.the email i used is inder the contact me info of the website
  • Berny : @bpomper: Apologies for your troubles. Where did you send the email to? We haven't received anything. I will send you a longer reply via mail. Also, you can download the free CD from the "Fireworks" menu on top, but the CD links are only shown if you are logged in.
  • bpomper : 3rd email inquiring about my purchase of fireworks #88. i purchased on the 2oth of sept and today is the 24 with no response...paypal has taken the payment. should i have a down load of the cd for mu usa magazine. Looking forward to an answer
  • bpomper : hello i purchased fireworks #88 through paypal on9/23 and have not recieved an email from rocktopia. purchase is for a hard copy of the mag. should i have cd download instructions.when should i expect it
  • Berny : @Johns Band: I've just sent you an e - mail. Best regards, B.

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