CHICAGO – NOW: XXXVI (ROCK)
Back in June, I said Chicago’s Now: XXXVI “may well be the venerable band’s first great album of new material in a generation.” Six months later, this Best of 2014 entry has not lost a bit of luster. Now: XXXVI hits the mark based on strong in-house writing — with everyone from guitarist Keith Howland and drummer Tris Imboden (the rocker “Free At Last”) to founder Robert Lamm contributing (with an especially strong “More Will Be Revealed”). There are not many bands in their 40-some year of existence which can break new ground. Chicago has here.