A Matter Of Trust (Deluxe 2CD/DVD)

SKU: 88883759762
Label:
Sony Legacy
Category:
Classic Rock
Add to wishlist 

"Billy Joel has been famously prickly in recent years about many of the archival releases bearing his name. But one hopes that the troubadour, currently in the midst of his tenure as a “franchise” at New York’s Madison Square Garden, is beaming with pride at A Matter of Trust – The Bridge to Russia. This set, available in a variety of audio and video formats from Columbia Records and Legacy Recordings, not only splendidly chronicles Joel’s historic 1987 trek to the Soviet Union but vividly rehabilitates the oft-derided (sometimes by the artist himself) live album KOHUEPT. Much like the current MSG shows, The Bridge to Russia is a potent reminder of the power and longevity of the body of work created by Joel in roughly two decades (1971-1993) as a recording artist. The troubadour might not have seemed the most obvious choice to break down doors previously not available to rock-and-rollers, but in retrospect, his uniquely American brand of scrappy tenaciousness – and his place in the tradition of the great Tin Pan Alley melodists – made him an ideal herald of the rock revolution.

When Joel and his entourage traveled to the Soviet Union as a result of Mikhail Gorbachev’s new policy of glasnost (openness and transparency) for six stadium shows in Moscow and Leningrad (plus one small acoustic show in Tbilisi), he had just two more studio albums ahead of him – not that anybody knew that at the time. It’s no wonder, then, that so much of the setlist as performed in Russia still resembles what you could expect to hear at a Joel concert today. (“Uptown Girl” is a notable exception as it’s only rarely performed now.) The Leningrad concert performance of A Bridge to Russia is available in audio form as a 2-CD set or in video form on DVD and Blu-ray; in addition, combination packages are available in CD/DVD and CD/BD formats, with these “box set” versions also including a new documentary film about the groundbreaking tour.   The audio version of the concert is substantially longer than the video, and the songs are in a different sequence on each program.

For many, the centerpiece will be the audio presentation which expands KOHUEPT. The choppy, truncated original album is now a more vibrant and accurate representation of Joel at his stadium-filling peak with band members Liberty DeVitto (drums), Doug Stegmeyer (bass), Mark Rivera (saxophone), Dave LeBolt (keyboards), Russell Javors and Kevin Dukes (guitars). KOHUEPT was just Joel’s second live album after Songs from the Attic. As Songs was drawn from multiple performances in various venues and largely designed to reintroduce older material with Joel’s new, regular band, however, it wasn’t a full concert release. Expectations were high for this first-time genuine live-at-one-venue album, and upon its releases, those hopes were all but dashed. KOHUEPT put its best foot forward with a stunning solo piano rendition of “Honesty” which the artist dedicated to the great Russian actor/singer/songwriter Vladimir Vysotsky. After that, however, the vocal strain which affected Joel on the U.S.S.R. tour was even more evident on disc than it had been in person. There were other factors, too. The audience reportedly didn’t respond well to ballads, preferring the more rhythmic, uptempo tracks – a response to repression, perhaps? If Joel’s energy and voice were flagging from time to time, it was likely because of the high-octane setlist with few breathers.

He also sounded somewhat stilted in his onstage banter addressing an audience that not only wasn’t primarily English-speaking, but also wasn’t necessarily familiar with the Piano Man. The one official state-owned record company, Melodiya, also controlled the country’s record stores. Joel was not a Melodiya artist, and commercial rock music was not a major part of the culture in the Soviet Union at the time. There was, of course, none of the familiar applause for Joel’s mention of “Oyster Bay, Long Island” in “The Ballad of Billy the Kid” or recognition applause at the start of a hit song. The Soviet people couldn’t know the places and share the experiences chronicled in the American everyman Joel’s songs. Though the audiences warmed to Joel (as dramatically seen in the accompanying documentary), their natural inclination was to be reserved if appreciative. As a result, Joel worked even harder, and likely did even more damage to his voice.

What few knew at the time, however, is that much of the best material was left in the vault – until now. Eleven songs have been added to the audio release – eight in the concert proper, and three as bonus tracks. An a cappella doo-wop of Don and Juan’s oldie “What’s Your Name” introduces a very loose voice-only version of Joel’s homage to the genre, “The Longest Time,” and it’s a pivotal inclusion here. Joel and his band learned traditional Russian a cappella from the Georgians, and reciprocated by teaching doo-wop to the people. Though Joel had performed the “What’s Your Name/The Longest Time” sequence before, the performance in Leningrad took on added meaning. The newly-discovered “Scenes from an Italian Restaurant” is a powerfully charged reading of the song. “You May Be Right,” if gravelly, is utterly swaggering. “Pressure” boils with excitement. “The Ballad of Billy the Kid” is a lesser-known moment in a set packed with hits plus new songs from 1986’s The Bridge; back-to-back with another previously unissued song, “She’s Always a Woman,” the album takes on a more distinctive shape.

In this new context, much of KOHUEPT sounds stronger: the tough, robust “Sometimes a Fantasy” (the song which sparked an onstage tantrum from Joel at an earlier performance in Moscow), a strong, surging “Angry Young Man,” a gritty and an emotional performance of “Allentown.” When Joel’s streetwise, no-nonsense brand of rock and pop cedes to a simple, guitar-and-voice rendition of Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are A-Changin’,” a song that would have long been off-limits to performers in the U.S.S.R., it’s a well-earned, poignant moment.

The heart of Legacy’s new campaign, however, is the documentary film (also titled A Matter of Trust: The Bridge to Russia) directed by Jim Brown. A viewing of the roughly 75-minute film puts the concert performance into perspective. The film is loaded with new interview footage from Joel, his then-wife Christie Brinkley (who accompanied Billy on the tour with their daughter Alexa in tow), surviving band members Liberty DeVitto, Mark Rivera, Russell Javors, Dave LeBolt and Kevin Dukes, Joel’s onstage translator Oleg Smirnoff and various behind-the-scenes personnel. Brown chronicles each stop of the Russian tour, cutting from new reminisces to vintage footage shot at the time by filmmaker Martin Bell. The documentary vividly paints a portrait of an artist at the top of his game who still has something to prove. It’s touching to hear Joel recall being inspired by the Russian people’s embrace of the pianist Van Cliburn, or DeVitto – who was discharged from the band in dramatic fashion – remembering his old employer giving 110% for his audience and suffering for it. The latter is illustrated with footage of him trying, and failing, to hit the high notes in “Big Man on Mulberry Street” during a pre-show rehearsal. Joel’s determination to live up to the high expectations for this cultural exchange is affecting.

Brown’s film addresses Joel’s infamous fit of pique onstage in Moscow, when his anger with the ever-present film crew led him to attack his grand piano and topple a smaller electric piano. But that was just one sensationalistic moment during a period which we’re led to believe was a truly transformative one for all involved. Smirnoff’s comments that “rock and roll is freedom” is a sentiment echoed by many of the participants especially as they reflect on the audience members – most of whom were unaccustomed to every aspect of the American concert experience from the volume to their own behavior. Smirnoff remembered the audience as afraid to react in any demonstrative fashion. The animated Joel’s crowd-surfing and engagement with his audience took on significance in Russia, and the documentary also chronicles his offstage connections with people from an ardent fan named Viktor to one vocally disapproving woman. Throughout it all, Joel and his band are as relatable and passionate as the music they performed. Jim Brown’s film is joined by a handsomely restored and expanded version of the Live from Leningrad concert movie running nearly 90 minutes with seven previously unreleased performances.

Each aspect of the deluxe package, produced by Jeff Schock and John Jackson, is top-notch. A thick, squarebound 80-page booklet contains five essays from writers with personal connections to, and memories of, the tour; they, too, concentrate on the overall culture shock and effect of Joel’s tour. Full lyrics are also a welcome inclusion. Ted Jensen has crisply remastered all of the music on the audio CDs under the supervision of Bruce Dickinson, with the previously unissued songs newly remixed by Frank Filipetti.

With today’s technology, the world seems an even smaller place than ever before. Even the Cold War can seem like a distant memory. A Matter of Trust – A Bridge to Russia chronicles one group of individuals’ efforts to spread the gospel of rock and roll during that heady period of history in spirited, often exhilarating style." - The Second Disc

There are no review yet. Be the first!

Product Review

You must login or register to post reviews.
Laser Pic

customers also bought

SEE ALL
  • "From December 1971 to April 1972, Carlos Santana and several other members of Santana toured with drummer/vocalist Buddy Miles, a former member of the Electric Flag, and Jimi Hendrix's Band of Gypsys. The resulting live album contained both Santana hits ("Evil Ways") and Buddy Miles hits ("Changes"), plus a 25-minute, side-long jam. It was not, perhaps, the live album Santana fans had been waiting for, but at this point in its career, the band could do no wrong. The album went into the Top Ten and sold a million copies." - All Music Guide
    $7.00
  • "Fans of iconic rock band THE DOORS are in for something special. The group s final album--1971 s L.A. WOMAN, with the signature hits L.A. Woman, Love Her Madly and Riders On The Storm --is being celebrated with a special two-CD release from Rhino.The L.A. WOMAN 40th anniversary edition (Rhino 2-CD) features a never-before-heard song, She Smells So Nice, which captures the band--organist RAY MANZAREK, guitarist ROBBY KRIEGER, drummer JOHN DENSMORE and late singer JIM MORRISON--joyfully barreling through a full-throttle original before segueing into the blues standard Rock Me. As the song closes, Morrison can be heard chanting, Mr. Mojo Risin --an anagram of his name that was made famous during the bridge of L.A. Woman. The track was recently discovered by producer Bruce Botnick while reviewing the L.A. WOMAN session tapes.In addition to She Smells So Nice, the second disc of the L.A. WOMAN reissue includes eight never-before-heard versions of songs from the album. Alternate takes of L.A. Woman, Love Her Madly and Riders On The Storm offer a fresh view on this landmark album, which was the group s sixth straight Top 10. The studio chatter between the songs is a revelation, transporting listeners to The Doors Workshop: the West Hollywood rehearsal space where they recorded the album with Botnick. One segment in particular captures a fascinating moment of inspiration when Morrison suggests they add the now-iconic thunderstorm sound effects to the beginning of Riders On The Storm.Rhino will also release L.A. WOMAN: THE WORKSHOP SESSIONS, a double LP featuring all of the previously unreleased material found on the CD collection on three sides of vinyl, with the fourth side featuring a laser etching of the original "Electric Woman" art originally included with the L.A. WOMAN album.Mr. Mojo Risin : The Story of L.A. Woman (Eagle Rock Entertainment DVD/Blu-ray) is told through new interviews with MANZAREK, KRIEGER and DENSMORE as well as Elektra Records founder JAC HOLZMAN, original manager Bill Siddons, engineer/co-producer Bruce Botnick and others. The high-definition video also features live and studio performances as well as rare archival photos. This fascinating documentary contains rare footage of THE DOORS in the studio and on stage. The documentary was made with the full involvement, approval and cooperation of THE DOORS.The Year of The Doors will be marked by other special releases, with details to be announced soon.L.A. WOMAN marked THE DOORS swan song, as MORRISON would pass away a few months after its release. At the time, Rolling Stone s Robert Meltzer called it The Doors greatest album...A landmark worthy of dancing in the streets (5/27/71). The first band to release eight consecutive platinum albums, THE DOORS were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1993 and received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2007."
    $8.00
  • "The Royal Scam is the first Steely Dan record that doesn't exhibit significant musical progress from its predecessor, but that doesn't mean the album is any less interesting. The cynicism that was suppressed on Katy Lied comes roaring to the surface on The Royal Scam -- not only are the lyrics bitter and snide, but the music is terse, broken, and weary. Not so coincidentally, the album is comprised of Walter Becker and Donald Fagen's weakest set of songs since Can't Buy a Thrill. Alternating between mean-spirited bluesy vamps like "Green Earrings" and "The Fez" and jazzy soft rock numbers like "The Caves of Altamira," there's nothing particularly bad on the album, yet there are fewer standouts than before. Nevertheless, the best songs on The Royal Scam, like the sneering "Kid Charlemagne" and "Sign in Stranger," rank as genuine Steely Dan classics." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • ""Countdown to Ecstasy wasn't half the hit that Can't Buy a Thrill was, and Steely Dan responded by trimming the lengthy instrumental jams that were scattered across Countdown and concentrating on concise songs for Pretzel Logic. While the shorter songs usually indicate a tendency toward pop conventions, that's not the case with Pretzel Logic. Instead of relying on easy hooks, Walter Becker andDonald Fagen assembled their most complex and cynical set of songs to date. Dense with harmonics, countermelodies, and bop phrasing, Pretzel Logic is vibrant with unpredictable musical juxtapositions and snide, but very funny, wordplay. Listen to how the album's hit single, "Rikki Don't Lose That Number," opens with a syncopated piano line that evolves into a graceful pop melody, or how the title track winds from a blues to a jazzy chorus -- Becker and Fagen's craft has become seamless while remaining idiosyncratic and thrillingly accessible. Since the songs are now paramount, it makes sense that Pretzel Logic is less of a band-oriented album than Countdown to Ecstasy, yet it is the richest album in their catalog, one where the backhanded Dylan tribute "Barrytown" can sit comfortably next to the gorgeous "Any Major Dude Will Tell You." Steely Dan made more accomplished albums than Pretzel Logic, but they never made a better one."" - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • "Dog & Butterfly became Heart's fourth million-selling album and placed two songs of opposing styles in the Top 40. Like their Magazine album, Dog & Butterfly peaked at number 17 on the charts, but the material from it is much stronger from every standpoint, with Anne and Nancy Wilson involving themselves to a greater extent. The light, afternoon feel of the title track peaked at number 34, while the more resounding punch of "Straight On" went all the way to number 15 as the album's first single. With keyboard player Howard Leese making his presence felt, and the vocals and guitar work sounding fuller and more focused, the band seems to be rather comfortable once again. Average bridge-and-chorus efforts like "Cook with Fire" and "High Time" aren't spectacular, but they do emit some appeal as far as filler is concerned, while "Lighter Touch" may be the best of the uncharted material. After this album, guitarist Roger Fisher left the band, but Heart didn't let up. 1980's Bebe le Strange showed an even greater improvement, peaking at number five in April of that year." - All Music GuideRemasetered version with 3 bonus tracks.
    $8.00
  • "After successfully establishing themselves as one of America's best commercial progressive rock bands of the late '70s with albums like The Grand Illusion and Pieces of Eight, Chicago's Styx had taken a dubious step towards pop overkill with singer Dennis DeYoung's ballad "Babe." The centerpiece of 1979's uneven Cornerstone album, the number one single sowed the seeds of disaster for the group by pitching DeYoung's increasingly mainstream ambitions against the group's more conservative songwriters, Tommy Shaw and James "JY" Young. Hence, what had once been a healthy competitive spirit within the band quickly deteriorated into bitter co-existence during the sessions for 1980's Paradise Theater -- and all-out warfare by the time of 1983's infamous Kilroy Was Here. For the time being, however, Paradise Theater seemed to represent the best of both worlds, since its loose concept about the roaring '20s heyday and eventual decline of an imaginary theater (used as a metaphor for the American experience in general, etc., etc.) seemed to satisfy both of the band's camps with its return to complex hard rock (purists Shaw and JY) while sparing no amount of pomp and grandeur (DeYoung). The stage is set by the first track, "A.D. 1928," which features a lonely DeYoung on piano and vocals introducing the album's recurring musical theme before launching into "Rockin' the Paradise" -- a total team effort of wonderfully stripped down hard rock. From this point forward, DeYoung's compositions ("Nothing Ever Goes as Planned," "The Best of Times") continue to stick close to the overall storyline, while Shaw's ("Too Much Time on My Hands," "She Cares") try to resist thematic restrictions as best they can. Among these, "The Best of Times" -- with its deliberate, marching rhythm -- remains one of the more improbable Top Ten hits of the decade (somehow it just works), while "Too Much Time on My Hands" figures among Shaw's finest singles ever. As for JY, the band's third songwriter (and resident peacekeeper) is only slightly more cooperative with the Paradise Theater concept. His edgier compositions include the desolate tale of drug addiction, "Snowblind," and the rollicking opus "Half-Penny, Two-Penny," which infuses a graphic depiction of inner city decadence with a final, small glimmer of hope and redemption. The song also leads straight into the album's beautiful saxophone-led epilogue, "A.D. 1958," which once again reveals MC DeYoung alone at his piano. A resounding success, Paradise Theater would become Styx's greatest commercial triumph; and in retrospect, it remains one of the best examples of the convergence between progressive rock and AOR which typified the sound of the era's top groups (Journey, Kansas, etc.). For Styx, its success would spell both their temporary saving grace and ultimate doom, as the creative forces which had already been tearing at the band's core finally reached unbearable levels three years later. It is no wonder that when the band reunited after over a decade of bad blood, all the music released post-1980 was left on the cutting room floor -- further proof that Paradise Theater was truly the best of times." - Allmusic Guide
    $8.00
  • "Equinox produced Styx's first single with A&M, the highly spirited "Lorelei," which found its way to number 27 on the charts. Although it was the only song to chart from Equinox, the album itself is a benchmark in the band's career since it includes an instrumental nature reminiscent of their early progressive years, yet hints toward a more commercial-sounding future in its lyrics. "Light Up" is a brilliant display of keyboard bubbliness, with De Young's vocals in full bloom, while "Lonely Child" and "Suite Madame Blue" show tighter songwriting and a slight drift toward radio amicability. Still harboring their synthesizer-led dramatics alongside Dennis De Young's exaggerated vocal approach, the material on Equinox was a firm precursor of what was to come . After Equinox, guitarist John Curulewski parted ways with the band, replaced by Tommy Shaw, who debuted on 1976's Crystal Ball album." - Allmusic Guide
    $5.00
  • Out of print box set that covers the history of Fleetwood Mac from their creation in 1967 up till 1992. Includes live tracks, rare remixes, and studio recordings.Disc: 1  1. Paper Doll (Box Set Version)  2. Love Shines (Box Set Version)  3. Stand Back (Live) [Unreleased]  4. Crystal  5. Isn't It Midnight (Edited Alternate Version)  6. Big Love (Album Version)  7. Everywhere (Album Version)  8. Affairs Of The Heart (Album Version)  9. Heart Of Stone (Box Set Version)  10. Sara (Lp Version)  11. That's All For Everyone (Lp Version)  12. Over My Head  13. Little Lies  14. Eyes Of The World (Lp Version)  15. Oh Diane (Lp Version)  16. In The Back Of My Mind (Album Version)  17. Make Me A Mask (Box Set Version)Disc: 2  1. Save Me (Album Version)  2. Goodbye Angel (Box Set Version)  3. Silver Springs (B-Side)  4. What Makes You Think You'Re The One (Remastered Lp Version)  5. Think About Me (Lp Version)  6. Gypsy (Alternate Unreleased Version)  7. You Make Loving Fun  8. Second Hand News (Alternate Mix)  9. Love In Store (Alternate Mix)  10. The Chain (Alternate Mix)  11. Teen Beat (Box Set Version)  12. Dreams (Alternate Mix)  13. Only Over You (Lp Version)  14. I'M So Afraid (Edited Live Version)  15. Love Is Dangerous (Album Version)  16. Gold Dust Woman (Alternate Mix)  17. Not That Funny (Live) [Unreleased]Disc: 3  1. Warm Ways  2. Say You Love Me  3. Don'T Stop  4. Rhiannon  5. Walk A Thin Line (Lp Version)  6. Storms (Lp Version)  7. Go Your Own Way  8. Sisters Of The Moon (Lp Version)  9. Monday Morning  10. Landslide  11. Hypnotized (Lp Version)  12. Lay It All Down (Unreleased Alternate Version)  13. Angel (Alternate Mix)  14. Beautiful Child (Alternate Mix)  15. Brown Eyes (Lp Version)  16. Save Me A Place (Lp Version)  17. Tusk (Lp Version)  18. Never Going Back Again  19. Songbird (Lp Version)Disc: 4  1. I Believe My Time Ain't Long  2. Need Your Love So Bad (Box Set Version)  3. Rattlesnake Shake (Lp Version)  4. Oh Well [Part 1]  5. Stop Messin' Around (Box Set Version)  6. Green Manalishi  7. Albatross (Single Version)  8. Man Of The World (Single Version)  9. Love That Burns (Lp Version)  10. Black Magic Woman (Single Version)  11. Watch Out (Take2-Complete Master Version/Remix))  12. String-A-Long (Unreleased)  13. Station Man (Lp Version)  14. Did You Ever Love Me (Lp Version)  15. Sentimental Lady (Lp Version)  16. Come A Little Bit Closer (Lp Version)  17. Heroes Are Hard To Find (Lp Version)  18. Trinity (Previously Unreleased Version)  19. Why (Lp Version)
    $12.00
  • This is the band's 1977 double album release that really caused the band to blow up on a world wide basis.  Jeff Lynne's obsession with The Beatles is in full force here.  Plenty of poppier tunes (that became world wide smash hits) but still some damn fine classical rock mixed in as well.  Going through their catalog I'd comfortably recommend this album as the stopping point.
    $5.00
  • "Steely Dan hadn't been a real working band since Pretzel Logic, but with Aja, Walter Becker and Donald Fagen's obsession with sonic detail and fascination with composition reached new heights. A coolly textured and immaculately produced collection of sophisticated jazz-rock, Aja has none of the overt cynicism or self-consciously challenging music that distinguished previous Steely Dan records. Instead, it's a measured and textured album, filled with subtle melodies and accomplished, jazzy solos that blend easily into the lush instrumental backdrops. But Aja isn't just about texture, since Becker and Fagen's songs are their most complex and musically rich set of songs -- even the simplest song, the sunny pop of "Peg," has layers of jazzy vocal harmonies. In fact, Steely Dan ignores rock on Aja, preferring to fuse cool jazz, blues, and pop together in a seamless, seductive fashion. It's complex music delivered with ease, and although the duo's preoccupation with clean sound and self-consciously sophisticated arrangements would eventually lead to a dead end, Aja is a shining example of jazz-rock at its finest." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • "Presenting radio with one of the best rock ballads ever, Cornerstone gave Chicago's Styx their big break with the number one single "Babe," which held that spot for two weeks in October of 1979. "Babe" is a smooth, keyboard-pampered love song that finally credited Dennis De Young's textured vocals. While this single helped the album climb all the way to the number two spot on the charts, the rest of the tracks from Cornerstone weren't nearly half as strong. "Why Me" made it to number 26, and both "Lights" and "Boat on the River" implement silky harmonies and welcoming choruses, yet failed to get off the ground. De Young's keyboards are effective without overly dominating the music, and the band's gritty rock & roll acerbity has been slightly sanded down to compliment the commercial market. The songs aren't as tight or assertive as their last few albums, but Shaw's presence can be felt strongly on most of the tracks, especially where the writing is concerned. Outside of "Babe," Cornerstone tends to sound a tad weaker than one would expect." - Allmusic guide
    $8.00
  • "Walter Becker and Donald Fagen were remarkable craftsmen from the start, as Steely Dan's debut, Can't Buy a Thrill, illustrates. Each song is tightly constructed, with interlocking chords and gracefully interwoven melodies, buoyed by clever, cryptic lyrics. All of these are hallmarks of Steely Dan's signature sound, but what is most remarkable about the record is the way it differs from their later albums. Of course, one of the most notable differences is the presence of vocalist David Palmer, a professional blue-eyed soul vocalist who oversings the handful of tracks where he takes the lead. Palmer's very presence signals the one major flaw with the album -- in an attempt to appeal to a wide audience, Becker and Fagen tempered their wildest impulses with mainstream pop techniques. Consequently, there are very few of the jazz flourishes that came to distinguish their albums -- the breakthrough single, "Do It Again," does work an impressively tight Latin jazz beat, and "Reelin' in the Years" has jazzy guitar solos and harmonies -- and the production is overly polished, conforming to all the conventions of early-'70s radio. Of course, that gives these decidedly twisted songs a subversive edge, but compositionally, these aren't as innovative as their later work. Even so, the best moments ("Dirty Work," "Kings," "Midnight Cruiser," "Turn That Heartbeat Over Again") are wonderful pop songs that subvert traditional conventions and more than foreshadow the paths Steely Dan would later take." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • "In some ways, Styx was America's answer to Queen. The Chicago quintet never ascended to the ranks of rock-and-roll royalty, as did their English counterparts, nor are they held in as high a regard today. Nevertheless, Styx fulfilled a Midwestern American hunger for high-flown fantasy typified on Pieces of Eight with songs like Dennis DeYoung and James Young's "I'm Okay" and "Lords of the Rings," with their elaborate arrangements, soaring vocal harmonies, and lyrical pretensions. In quite another direction, guitarist Tommy Shaw writes about basic human needs and working-class values in "Blue Collar Man," while his song "Sing for the Day" is a pleasant air, and "Renegade" a hard-charging rocker. Styx may have seemed somewhat schizophrenic on Pieces of Eight but their legions of fans diminished not a whit, making the album the band's second multiplatinum effort in a row, following The Grand Illusion." 
    $5.00