Tuesday, October 30, 2012

"Borrowed Time" by Styx

Song#:  0110
Date:  03/29/1980
Debut:  81
Peak:  64
Weeks:  6
Genre:  Rock, Arena Rock

Pop Bits:  Styx's career was in high-gear when they released the album "Cornerstone." It's lead single, "Babe," became their only #1 chart hit. Initially the song was not intended to be on the album as it was a birthday gift that Dennis DeYoung wrote for his wife. But at the urging of other band members, the demo was included on the album and put out as a single. However, its popularity started some dissent within the group; specifically between DeYoung and Tommy Shaw. It's the point where DeYoung began to veer off into a more melodic, theatrical approach versus the hard rock direction Shaw wanted to go. This disagreement would continue and come to a bitter end in a few short years. In the meantime, this Shaw/DeYoung collaboration would be the third single from "Cornerstone."

ReduxReview:  As a Styx fan who wore out two cassette copies of "The Grand Illusion" album, I can say that "Cornerstone" is probably their weakest album in this period. It still had some good songs but no true standouts except for "Babe." This song is a good chugging rocker, but not the best selection for a single. I always thought the album opener "Lights" would have made a better single. But they were having issues selecting singles so no wonder this one dudded out...

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  The DeYoung/Shaw feud was initially over the choice of second single from the album. The success of "Babe" started to lead DeYoung down the theatrical path and his other ballad on the album "First Night" was already getting airplay - so that would be the obvious single. But objections from Shaw and his rock direction lead to the upbeat "Why Me?" (#26) and "Borrowed Time" being released instead. So intense was the argument at the time that it lead to DeYoung being fired from the band for a brief period of time. But issues were resolved (for the time being) and the group set out to make their next album - which proved to be their biggest hit.


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