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Styx's Lawrence Gowan says experience of making 'The Mission' inspired band to record new album

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Credit: Jason Powell

In some recent interviews, Styx singer/guitarist Tommy Shaw revealed that the band is preparing a follow-up to its 2017 concept album, The Mission, and now keyboardist/singer Lawrence Gowan has shared some details about the project with ABC Audio.

There was a 14-year gap between the release of The Mission and Styx’s previous album of new material, 2003’s Cyclorama, but the band apparently has another record ready to go less than four years since The Mission‘s arrival.

Explaining what inspired Styx to return to the studio so relatively quickly, Gowan says, “Basically, we felt after The Mission, let’s keep this going…And it was really [at] Tommy Shaw’s…instigation…He said, ‘There’s no reason we can’t keep this going.’ And the record company wanted another one, so we pushed ahead.”

Gowan, who joined Styx in 1999, adds, “And it’s the greatest thing for the lifeblood of a band [to create new music].”

Lawrence tells ABC Audio that he doesn’t want to divulge too much about the new record, suggesting that official details should come from Shaw and longtime Styx guitarist James “JY” Young.

As for a time-frame for the album being released, Gowan maintains that “in our pandemic world right now, it’s something that needs to be really carefully considered whether this is the right time to put out new music or not…So far…we’re still deciding what the right…path is.”

Reflecting on the long gap between Cyclorama and The Mission, Gowan notes that the emergence of digital music services put a damper on Styx’s enthusiasm for releasing new original material, because it became harder for artists to generate income from their music.

Lawrence notes that the unexpected vinyl revival was a factor in motivating the band to return to making albums.

By Matt Friedlander
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