Though it offers mostly a smattering of re-recordings of their own songs, Styx’s Regeneration Volume I& II features a bit more than mere redeuxs; there’s a new song here (“Difference in the World”), as well as the band’s take on some of guitarist/vocalist/jack-of-all-trades Tommy Shaw’s prior affiliation the Damn Yankees (“High Enough,” “Coming of Age”). Regardless, the vast majority of Regeneration sounds familiar, and should come off old hat to listeners if you have spent any time listening to rock radio over the past 30 years.
One of the pitfalls for Styx and Regeneration (Eagle Rock Ent.) is that it plays entirely too close to that of a greatest hits record, which Styx has a number of to their credit. Still, the band’s most seminal works are included here (“Come Sail Away,” “Renegade”), while the band’s impressive run of tracks to garner their fare share of radio fill the air time and time again throughout Regeneration(“Miss America,” “Lorelei”). “Sing for the Day” and “Queen of Spades” are two of the more obscure cuts, though they aren’t really enough to help separate Regeneration Volume I& II from any other greatest hits package. Sure, these songs are re-recorded, but they don’t sound modern, and without any re-interpretation of the music, Regeneration sounds stuck in decades past.
Regeneration is good for what it is, because these songs have withstood the test of time, but still it may have been in the band’s better interest to release a LP or even an EP of completely new material. The glaring question for Styx is, are fans going to buyRegeneration Volume I& II for a new song, a few covers and a number of re-recordings? Well, that remains to be seen.