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Articles Home » 1990 Articles » Styx - 1990 Edge Of The Century
Styx - 1990 Edge Of The Century

ALBUM: Edge Of The Century
SERIAL: 75021 5327 2
YEAR: 1990


LINEUP: Dennis De Young - vocals, keyboards * James Young - vocals, guitars * Glen Burtnik - vocals, guitars * Chuck Panozzo - bass * John Panozzo - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Love Is The Ritual * 02 Show Me The Way * 03 Edge Of The Century * 04 Love At First Sight * 05 All In A Days Work * 06 Not Dead Yet * 07 World Tonite * 08 Carrie Ann * 09 Homewrecker * 10 Back To Chicago


The Styx bandwagon was starting to look shaky halfway through the 'Kilroy Was Here' tour. Tommy Shaw announced to his bandmates that he was going solo shortly after, and as a result, Dennis De Young put the band into storage. De Young, Shaw and James Young all pursued solo careers between 1985 and 1988 with varying levels of success. Toward the end of the decade, Shaw and De Young rekindled interest in reforming the band, but De Young's 1988 'Boomchild' album took a lot longer to complete (he described it as the worst eleven months of his life), and as a result, Shaw couldn't hold on any longer and moved on to the Damn Yankees instead. Still encouraged by a reformation, De Young bought New Jersey solo artist Glen Burtnick onboard. Also on the A&M label and with two excellent solo albums under his belt, Burtnik (now minus a 'c' in his surname) would take on the role held by Shaw, but he also bought strong songwriting skills too, complimenting those of De Young. For many punters, the resultant 1990 reunion album 'Edge Of The Century' was their best effort since 1978's 'Pieces Of Eight' a distant twelve years past.

The Songs
The two principal songwriters contribute a different set of tunes to the album. De Young provides the sugary ballads, while Burtnik provides the cut and thrust rockers. De Young's epic 'Show Me The Way' was the big hit, making it to #3 on the Billboard charts. the song was dedicated to his son Matthew. Dennis' other family member, daughter 'Carrie Ann' also get a musical/lyrical tribute on the album, yet more sugar coated balladry. Burtnik's contributions are quite different sounding to stuff we've heard before from the man (that should be obvious..). 'World Tonite' has that jangly singer/songwriter vibe reminiscent of his solo material, 'Love Is The Ritual' meanwhile is the hardest rockin' effort here, mixing a hi-tech arrangement, cutting guitars and big shout-it-out choruses. 'All In A Days Work' is a reflective but acoustic number, which sees Burtnik emulating his predecessor Tommy Shaw stylistically. 'Not Dead Yet', written by Ralph Covert' is Styx's answer to good-time rock 'n' roll, musically stripped down with a ton of lyrics to match. 'Back To Chicago' returns to the band's 'Paradise Theatre' era, the music-hall style complete with lots of piano and blaring horns. yet another change-up moment on the album. James Young also drops one in.. 'Homewrecker', a typical JY rocker which mashes up the album a bit. The guitar and keyboard solos are pretty nifty too.

In Summary
The album was met with indifference by the general public, despite their six year MIA status. Melodic rock was already on the way out, and their arrival did little to stop the backward trend. At the time, the Gulf War was in full swing, and the song 'Show Me The Way' became the unofficial anthem, which was flattering, but probably didn't help their cause any. The lineup was short lived despite its promise. The band would continue in well into the 21st century, and their story can be read elsewhere on GLORY-DAZE.

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#1 | Eric on June 11 2006 03:39:42
'There was a mix of 'Show Me The Way' that included voices from US troops during the Kuwait/ Iraq war MK1. This is the reason the song charted so highly at the time. It struck a chord with American audiences.
#2 | george_the_jack on June 04 2012 00:42:32
YouTube Video:
#3 | super80boy on March 17 2014 22:43:03
For the time and new musicians involved, this was a decent effort, but there wasn't that one or even two great songs to carry the album.
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