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STYX ‘Cyclorama ’ DVD-A
Silverline (2004)

Styx

The original Cyclorama album has been out for well over a year now but Silvertone have now seen fit to release the DVD-A version of the album. Why bother I hear you ask. What improvements have been made to the CD release and what bonus features have been added in order to tempt you into buying this version - especially as most fans (myself included) will have already purchased it first time around.

What does the DVD-A feature? Well besides having a complete version of the CD remixed for Dolby 5.1 surround sound (the 5 refers to having 5 speakers - one in each corner of the room with another directly in front plus a sub-woofer) the disc has several other features.

The Cyclorama album itself was a return to form for the rejuvenated Styx after the disappointment of the Brave New World album. The latter suffered from too many Dennis DeYoung ballads - not a problem on Cyclorama as the Styx mainstay has been replaced by Lawrence Gowan (quite a big solo star in his Canadian homeland). The band now consists of sole remaining original member James Young, long time virtuoso Tommy Shaw, Glen Burtnik on bass (since replaced by Ricky Phillips, ex-Bad English) and Todd Sucherman on drums plus the aforementioned Lawrence Gowan.

Each track on the disc has its own backdrop - as per the CD booklet - of a weird scene containing one or more carrots! 'Kiss Your Ass Goodbye', for example, features a carrot floating on a lake.

'Home of the Brave' and 'Waiting for our Time' are both featured in video form though neither of which feature the band. 'Home of the Brave' consists of a series of clips of American scenery whilst 'Waiting for our Time' is just a series of kaleidoscope images. View once (and maybe get a headache from the latter) and then forget!

A short video clip features Tommy Shaw and the DVD-A producer Gary Loizzo discussing the surround sound mix.

Lyrics to all songs, weblinks and set-up of surround sound systems can also be accessed through the menus provided.

Unfortunately my laptop doesnít come equipped with surround sound speakers and therefore Iím unable to comment on the surround sound mix but Styx songs should lend themselves well to being dissected for surround sound enjoyment.

*** (original CD was a **** for the music alone)

Review by Phil Berisford

Album review

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly


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