Album review: STYX – Caught In The Act

STYX – Caught In The Act

BGO Records [Release date 09.02.18]

BGO Records are re-issuing ‘Caught In The Act’, Styx’s live album originally released in 1984, as a double CD in a slip case, remastered and with sleeve notes from Neil Daniels.

‘Caught In The Act’ marked a live swansong for Styx as they split-up in 1984, following the lukewarm reception to the previous year’s ‘Kilroy Was Here’ album and band tensions which would see Tommy Shaw bow out of the short-lived 1990 reunion and subsequent album ‘Edge Of The Century’.

The tour it was recorded on had the band adopt various characters from the ‘Kilroy Was Here’ concept album, although the original video release has more of the songs of that album than the live album has.

The live version of ‘Mr. Roboto’ is suitable rocking, whilst the second disc (sides 3 and 4 on the original vinyl release), feature plenty of classics including ‘Come Sail Away’, ‘Blue Collar Man’ and ‘Rockin’ The Paradise’. With three vocalists in the band – Dennis De Young, Tommy Shaw and for the gruffer, rockier songs James Young – Styx were always able to re-create their harmony filled songs to match the studio originals.

There was one new song, ‘Music Time’ sounding like a mash-up of Saga and the Cars, which made number 40 in the Billboard singles charts. I am with Tommy Shaw on this one who was not a fan and it hasn’t aged very well.

‘Caught In The Act’ is a fitting capture of the classic Styx line-up in action – the only official live album to do so – and many of the songs on here still feature in the band’s setlist today.  ***1/2

Review by Jason Ritchie



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