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July 31, 2016

Styx – The Grand Illusion (1977) – Lp

by Record Facts

Styx is an American rock band from Chicago that formed in 1970 and became famous for its albums released in the late 1970s and early 1980s. They are best known for melding the style of pop rock and hard rock with the power of a hard-rock guitar balanced with acoustic guitar, synthesizers mixed with acoustic piano, upbeat tracks with power ballads, and incorporating elements of international musical theater.

styx - the grand illusion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  Styx
Title:  The Grand Illusion
Year:  1977
Format:  LP
Label:  A&M Records
Catalog#  AMLH 64637

The Grand Illusion is the seventh studio album by Styx, released on July 7, 1977. It launched the band to stardom, spawning the hit singles “Come Sail Away” and “Fooling Yourself“, and selling over three million copies in the US. The album was recorded at Paragon Recording Studios in Chicago.

Other than being their first platinum-selling album, The Grand Illusion led Styx steadfastly into the domain of AOR rock. Built on the strengths of “Come Sail Away”‘s ballad-to-rock metamorphosis, which gained them their second Top Ten hit, and on the high harmonies of newcomer Tommy Shaw throughout “Fooling Yourself,” The Grand Illusion introduced Styx to the gates of commercial stardom. The pulverized growl of “Miss America” reveals the group’s guitar-savvy approach to six-string rock, while De Young pretentiously struts his singing prowess throughout the title track. Shaw‘s induction into the band has clearly settled, and his guitar work, along with James Young‘s, is full and extremely sharp where it matters most. Even the songwriting is more effluent than Crystal Ball, which was released one year earlier, shedding their mystical song motifs for a more audience-pleasing lyric and chord counterpoise. Reaching number six on the album charts, The Grand Illusion was the first to display the gelled accomplishments of both Tommy Shaw and Dennis De Young as a tandem.

The album cover art, created by Alton Kelley and Stanley Mouse, is an homage to a painting by René Magritte entitled “Le Blanc-Seing”.

 

Side one
1.  The Grand Illusion  (4:36)
2.  Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man)  (5:29)
3.  Superstars  (3:59)
4.  Come Sail Away  (6:06)

Side two
1.  Miss America  (5:01)
2.  Man In The Wilderness  (5:49)
3.  Castle Walls  (6:00)
4.  The Grand Finale  (1:58)

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