This past Tuesday night thousands of fans braved gloomy skies to give a welcome to hometown heroes Styx during their show at RiverEdge Park in Aurora. To say the venue was packed to the brim would be an understatement as there were lawn chairs and fans standing as far as the eye could see. Even a torrential downpour shortly before doors didn’t deter die-hard fans from securing the best seats in the park. Thankfully the clouds parted right before the show, which added to the excitement of the night.
The show was started by the local band Siin, who did a fantastic job warming up the eager crowd. They had the crowd singing, dancing, and diving for guitar picks and plastic beads. The band played a set of original rock songs that had touches from everyone’s favorite classic rock music, and even an original ballad which charted #1 overseas.
While Siin got the crowd warmed up, Styx truly blew the crowd away. There is no doubt that their success wasn’t accidental, and with this being Styx’s 52nd year as a band, they have truly aged like fine wine. With a band that has been performing over half a century, Styx had more energy on stage than performers half their age! A lot of this credit goes to vocal and keyboard powerhouse Lawrence Gowan, who did not stand in the same spot for more than 15 seconds. Whether he was spinning his keyboard around or running around the stage like an acrobat, he truly put on a show. Styx veteran Tommy Shaw was also running, jumping and more onstage antics, all while singing and playing guitar. Hometown hero Todd Schuerman was an absolute madman behind the drum kit, playing Styx hits with ease and throwing some extremely technical tricks in for show. James Young, who is also from the Chicago area effortlessly worked his way through Styx greatest hits on guitar. Also on guitar was Will Evankovich, who is the newest member of Styx and has helped perform and produce on their last two studio albums. Bass duties were covered by Ricky Philips, who has an astounding resume working with artists such as The Babys, Bad English, and more. Fans were also treated to multiple songs featuring Chuck Panozzo, the co-founder of Styx. Panozzo seemed to have the time of his life and was all smiles while playing the Styx songs we all know and love.
The show was truly electric and the energized crowd was having the time of their lives! There was something in the air as the night was a perfect combination of beautiful weather and live music. Styx truly put on an amazing show, and even though there was no roof on the venue, they surely would’ve blown it off!
Review by Tom Antonson
Photos by Rob Grabowski / GrabowskiPhoto.com)