Pieces of Eight is the eighth studio album by Styx, released on September 1, 1978. Styx's feisty, straightforward brand of album rock is represented best by "Blue Collar Man" from 1978's Pieces of Eight, an invigorating keyboard and guitar rush -- hard and heavy, yet curved by Tommy Shaw's emphasized vocals. The classic album also includes Renegade. Now available on 180 gram vinyl.
Like the band's previous album, The Grand Illusion, it managed to achieve triple-platinum certification, thanks to the hit singles "Sing for the Day", "Blue Collar Man (Long Nights)," and "Renegade." The band members produced and recorded the album (like their previous three efforts) at Paragon Studios in Chicago with recording engineer Barry Mraz and mixing engineer Rob Kingsland. "I'm O.K" was recorded at Paragon and St. James Cathedral. This would be the last album to be produced at Paragon Studios.
Some consider the album to be Styx' second concept album, The Serpent Is Rising arguably being the first, as well as the last Styx album with significant progressive rock leanings that characterized their previous albums. The theme of the album, as Dennis DeYoung explained on In the Studio with Redbeard which devoted an entire episode to Pieces of Eight, was about "not giving up your dreams just for the pursuit of money and material possessions."
Eight of the album's ten tracks have vocals, and it features two instrumentals, the DeYoung synthesizer showcase "The Message" and Tommy Shaw's closing "Aku-Aku" (although for the latter, there was one lyric spoken, the title of the song). "The Message" serves as a prelude for "Lords of the Ring," and "Aku-Aku" is a postlude for "Pieces of Eight."
1. Great White Hope
2. I'm OK
3. Sing For the Day
4. The Message
5. Lords of The Ring
1. Blue Collar Man (Long Nights)
2. Queen of Spades
4. Pieces of Eight