Volume 2” Album, How Tom Morello Wound Up On His Album, Co-Founding Styx & Much More – The Hype Magazine
Published on June 7th, 2021 | by Darren Paltrowitz
On June 11, 2021, legendary vocalist and musician — and co-founder of Styx — Dennis DeYoung will release his final studio album 26 East, Vol. 2 via Frontiers Music Srl. Vol. 2 picks up where Vol. 1 left off, with DeYoung mining similar musical territory. Featuring both direct links to the classic Styx sound and straight-ahead rock, this one has “The Last Guitar Hero” (as featuring Rage Against The Machine and Audioslave guitarist Tom Morello), the 8-minute prog-tastic “Isle Of Misanthrope” and a pair of signature-style DeYoung ballads in “Your Saving Grace” and “Made For Each Other.”
Dennis DeYoung had previously stated that 26 East, Vol. 1 would mark his retirement from the world of recorded music. It was thanks to Frontiers President and Head of A&R Serafino Perugino that — given the abundance of material — DeYoung agreed to split the album into 2 parts. This second half also finds DeYoung collaborate with fellow Chicagoan and GRAMMY Award-winning songwriter Jim Peterik. The process that brought forth these 2 albums in the first place started when Peterik, DeYoung’s friend and neighbor, sent a song to DeYoung that he thought would suit his vocals perfectly. That song became the catalyst for 10 more collaborations from the pair, of which 4 appear on this new release. Per the album title itself, 26 East was the address where DeYoung grew up in Roseland, Illinois on the far south side of Chicago, across the street lived the Panozzo twins John and Chuck, who along with DeYoung formed the nucleus of Styx in DeYoung’s basement in 1962.
On June 7, 2021, I had the pleasure of speaking with Dennis DeYoung via Zoom, as embedded below. We kicked off the conversation with my recollection of interviewing DeYoung in the early 2000s in my early 20s and then progressed to discussion about 26 East, Vol. 2, future plans beyond this album release, and whether a Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame nomination for him and Styx means anything to him. Long story short, few interview subjects are more fun for me to speak with than DeYoung. More on the Styx co-founder and future touring can be found by clicking here, here, here and here.