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Thread: NEAL MORSE BAND: The Great Adventure - January 25 2019

  1. #226
    I have yet to pick up TGA. I had a reaction to Similitude that is similar to many people here's reaction to TGA. I've been listening to Neal since just before the release of Kindness of Strangers and have loved almost everything. Lifeline, Momentum, Day For Night, and Snow being the albums that do little for me. I guess I have to add Similitude to that list. I listened to it more than a dozen times, yet couldn't recall a single moment after it was over, even after all those listens. To me, that was enough. So I've not jumped on this one (I usually buy his albums right after release). Now that people are saying the didn't like it as much as Similitude, I feel like I may just pass on this one. No, I'll probably still pick it up, but now I'm in no hurry.

    It's funny, I thought I was burned out on Neal when Lifeline came out, but then Testimony 2 came out and I was right back on board. I thought the same with Momentum, but then Grand Experiment came out and I was back on board again (that one could well be my favorite album of his, as it has a real Spock's feel to it while not being exactly a carbon copy of his old Spock's stuff). Now I'm thinking I might be burnt out again. Based on past experience, I will get this new one at some point and give it a go. Maybe I'll love Neal's music once again, we'll see.

    My favorites are still Kindness of Strangers, V, ?, Sola Scriptura, and Grand Experiment (not necessarily in that order). I do enjoy the TA stuff, though I felt the last TA album sounded like the just phoned it in. I did enjoy some of it though, so it wasn't a total loss for me, and live the epics came across better, I thought. I've never heard any of his singer songwriter stuff (other than what is on the prog solo albums) or his worship stuff. I actually put off buying his solo albums initially because of the Christianity aspect. However, around the time of Sola, I decided to give it a try (couldn't resist and album of only epics, lol) and ended up getting all of them in short order, and have bought them on release ever since then. Even though I'm not a Christian or religious at all, I find I appreciate the uplifting and powerful nature of his music and don't mind the lyrics. I am glad he's become less blatant though, as he was REALLY repeating himself too much lyrically by Lifeline.

  2. #227
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by infandous View Post

    It's funny, I thought I was burned out on Neal when Lifeline came out, but then Testimony 2 came out and I was right back on board. I thought the same with Momentum, but then Grand Experiment came out and I was back on board again (that one could well be my favorite album of his, as it has a real Spock's feel to it while not being exactly a carbon copy of his old Spock's stuff). Now I'm thinking I might be burnt out again. Based on past experience, I will get this new one at some point and give it a go. Maybe I'll love Neal's music once again, we'll see.
    Speaking only for myself, and ymmv, none of the post-80s more commercial styled Prog-Rock has had any staying power. (Spock's, TFK, etc.) Even if I enjoy it at first listen, that doesn't last long term, and if I want to listen to some commercially styled prog-Rock, (as sometimes happens,) I pull out something in that vein from back in the day, like Alan Parsons Project, for example. Aside from the songs, there's a nostalgia hook with that, having associations made when the albums first came out and were in regular rotation. The "newer" commercially styled stuff doesn't have the nostalgia hook, and can't compete with the older similar stuff for what is admittedly a small niche area in my listening time. Consequently, I find myself buying little to none in that style by current artists.
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  3. #228
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    Quote Originally Posted by infandous View Post
    It's funny, I thought I was burned out on Neal when Lifeline came out, but then Testimony 2 came out and I was right back on board. I thought the same with Momentum, but then Grand Experiment came out and I was back on board again (that one could well be my favorite album of his, as it has a real Spock's feel to it while not being exactly a carbon copy of his old Spock's stuff). Now I'm thinking I might be burnt out again. Based on past experience, I will get this new one at some point and give it a go. Maybe I'll love Neal's music once again, we'll see.
    I've had a similar experience: discovered SB in the late 90s, thought Snow was their peak though, but got burnt out on Neal by Testimony. So much so that I ignored all his solo stuff until The Grand Experiment. I got the same vibe as you from that one, except for me it extended to Similitude. Now the new one isn't bad, but yes, I feel he did exactly what was required to get me burnt out: release a sequel to his last album following exactly the same formula (but with slightly less diversity). For an artist as formulaic as Morse, that's just pushing things too far. Now TGA is by no means a bad album but it really suffers from being released as a follow up to Similitude.

    Quote Originally Posted by infandous View Post
    I do enjoy the TA stuff, though I felt the last TA album sounded like the just phoned it in.
    Absolutely. TA was never the most original band, but it seems they've said all they had to say on the first 3 albums. The first 2 were quite similar, though the first one was more Morse-dominated and the second one more of a band effort. The Whirlwind didn't break any new ground but at least offered a welcome change in format (whether you choose to see it as a single 77 minute track or a concept album made up of shorter tracks). The only reason I enjoyed Kaleidoscope when it was released was because I didn't expect to hear anything more from these guys. Now I find it's the one I return to the least because it adds absolutely nothing to the first three. I hear there are talks of a new album, possibly next year, but I'm afraid I expect absolutely nothing original or surprising of it. Talk about being burnt out on a formula!
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  4. #229
    Moderator Poisoned Youth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    Speaking only for myself, and ymmv, none of the post-80s more commercial styled Prog-Rock has had any staying power. (Spock's, TFK, etc.) Even if I enjoy it at first listen, that doesn't last long term, and if I want to listen to some commercially styled prog-Rock, (as sometimes happens,) I pull out something in that vein from back in the day, like Alan Parsons Project, for example. Aside from the songs, there's a nostalgia hook with that, having associations made when the albums first came out and were in regular rotation. The "newer" commercially styled stuff doesn't have the nostalgia hook, and can't compete with the older similar stuff for what is admittedly a small niche area in my listening time. Consequently, I find myself buying little to none in that style by current artists.
    I think one could make an argument that rock in general through the 80s had some more obvious melodies, simple digestible grooves, comfortable chord progressions, head banging riffs, vocal harmonies, and other elements that created a variety of memorable "hooks".

    Also consider how we were consuming music was changing in the 90s, and how we were being introduced to that music, not to mention the sticking power that music that forms the "soundtrack of your life" (i.e. growing up). And then fast forward to the present where music is everywhere. I think this has a lot more to do with people's ability (or lack thereof) to connect with music from the last 25 years, then from music in the past.

    That said, I can't imagine living without some of the music that has been produced in the last 25 years.
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  5. #230
    Moderator Poisoned Youth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeFrog View Post
    TA was never the most original band, but it seems they've said all they had to say on the first 3 albums. The first 2 were quite similar, though the first one was more Morse-dominated and the second one more of a band effort. The Whirlwind didn't break any new ground but at least offered a welcome change in format (whether you choose to see it as a single 77 minute track or a concept album made up of shorter tracks). The only reason I enjoyed Kaleidoscope when it was released was because I didn't expect to hear anything more from these guys. Now I find it's the one I return to the least because it adds absolutely nothing to the first three. I hear there are talks of a new album, possibly next year, but I'm afraid I expect absolutely nothing original or surprising of it. Talk about being burnt out on a formula!
    For me, every TA album is step down from the previous. SMPT:e has held up great for me - every track and is a classic of "third wave". Bridge has two excellent epics. Whirlwind is patchwork, and like some of Neal's recent work, it has great songs that would have been stronger as standalone tracks so I don't return to it much. Kaleidoscope leaves me cold. I think I've heard it 5 times over the years and don't remember a lick of it.
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  6. #231
    Member doh's Avatar
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    I happened to listen to Kaleidoscope this week and really enjoyed it. It was like listening to it for the first time though as I remembered very little of it, so I understand what you mean.

  7. #232
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    Quote Originally Posted by doh View Post
    I happened to listen to Kaleidoscope this week and really enjoyed it. It was like listening to it for the first time though as I remembered very little of it, so I understand what you mean.
    I guess Kaleidoscope is a very good album if you manage not to compare it to the other TA albums.
    Not just a Genesis fanboy.

  8. #233
    Quote Originally Posted by LeFrog View Post
    I guess Kaleidoscope is a very good album if you manage not to compare it to the other TA albums.
    Whirlwind was my overall favorite, but each one had things that I enjoyed.

  9. #234
    随缘 SRS's Avatar
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    Dallas show tonight! any other PE peeps going? yodelgoat? dgtlman?

  10. #235
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    My wife and I are really enjoying the new album as well as TSOAD. We saw both tours and now we're seriously thinking of attending MorseFest 2019.

  11. #236
    Quote Originally Posted by Poisoned Youth View Post
    I think one could make an argument that rock in general through the 80s had some more obvious melodies, simple digestible grooves, comfortable chord progressions, head banging riffs, vocal harmonies, and other elements that created a variety of memorable "hooks".

    Also consider how we were consuming music was changing in the 90s, and how we were being introduced to that music, not to mention the sticking power that music that forms the "soundtrack of your life" (i.e. growing up). And then fast forward to the present where music is everywhere. I think this has a lot more to do with people's ability (or lack thereof) to connect with music from the last 25 years, then from music in the past.

    That said, I can't imagine living without some of the music that has been produced in the last 25 years.

    This is my feeling exactly. For me, The Flower Kings and Neal were my first real loves of the "3rd wave" of prog rock. So the hit me in much the same way that Yes, Genesis, ELP, etc. did. So I still value them greatly. I am finding that much like I almost never listen to those 70's prog bands anymore (which I really don't........I know all that stuff inside and out and I just never feel like I need to hear it again, though I do occasionally pull an album or two out), the same is becoming true of those late 90's, early 2000's favorites. I'm glad they are in my collection and glad they exist, but I've heard them enough times that I can play them in my head and don't need the album (not literally I guess). Anyway, I'm still quite pleased with a lot of new music I hear, but I am getting burnt out on these "older" 3rd wave bands (has there been more "waves" since then? I'm never sure how to measure these things).

  12. #237
    Quote Originally Posted by Proghound View Post
    Saw Neal Morse last night at the Keswick, left just after the intermission. More and more I find him to be a one trick pony. Bombastic sequences in between soft acoustic interludes. Story is always person goes adventuring, runs into the devil, finds salvation. Sorry, I guess unless you are into Christian rock... not my cuppa tea, and have given him multiple views. Theater was probably only half full on a Saturday night... and I understand why. You love him (people singing along - waving their arms).... or you don't. It actually made me appreciate Transatlantic and his other projects less. Same formula over and over. IMO of course, but went with two friends and all left with the same opinion. They are all great musicians which is the really sad part.
    You missed the best part. They didn't really catch fire until the second set and encore. (Which verified my feeling that I like the second disc much better than the first although there are a few good ones on Disc 1)

    I thought they were holding back during the first set at the Keswick.

  13. #238
    Quote Originally Posted by doh View Post
    I happened to listen to Kaleidoscope this week and really enjoyed it. It was like listening to it for the first time though as I remembered very little of it, so I understand what you mean.


    That always happens to me. No idea why. Love the previous three, but I can never remember much of it when I pull it off of the shelf. It's the weirdest thing.

    I always thought Snow (by far my least favorite Spock's Beard album) seemed forced deliberate while Testimony was by far more organic and liberating for Neal even if I couldn't really relate on a personal level.

  14. #239
    I'm really bummed, but I have 2 tickets I won't be able to use for the show in Whittier Ca this Friday, 3/8. Family stuff came up.


    If anyone is interested, I will sell the pair for less than the face value of $75.

    They are good seats. I will add a photo of tickets a bit later.
    And if there were a god, I think it very unlikely that he would have such an uneasy vanity as to be offended by those who doubt His existence - Russell

  15. #240
    I saw the band in Portland last Wednesday. Very small venue, around 150 people. To me an awesome show. The encores is like another show where they covered a song from each album.

    I don't think they made any money from this show or Seattle (Triple door), but it was great that they came here.

  16. #241
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    MORSEFEST19 was announced yesterday and there are no surprises.
    night 2 will be the final presentation of THE GREAT ADVENTURE live.
    night 1 will be the reunion of FLYING COLOURS- who's new album and tour sill kick off shortly after.

    to be honest, i haven't gotten into FC yet. i'm not keen of Neal not being the front man.
    but perhaps between now and then i'll check them out. Steve Morse is a power house.
    saw him with Kansas and he's been with Deep Purple for over 20 years......

  17. #242
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    You should have seen him (Steve Morse) at The Dixie Dregs reunion last year! He and they were amazing!!!!
    So much music....so little time....

  18. #243
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    Quote Originally Posted by flatliner View Post
    You should have seen him (Steve Morse) at The Dixie Dregs reunion last year! He and they were amazing!!!!
    That was an awesome tour!

  19. #244
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    I'm not big on Flying Colours, but Steve Morse is always awesome.

  20. #245
    400 buck VIP ticket for one night at Morsefest... Ouch...

  21. #246
    Studmuffin Scott Bails's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BravadoNJ View Post
    to be honest, i haven't gotten into FC yet. i'm not keen of Neal not being the front man.
    This is exactly why it works, IMO.
    Music isn't about chops, or even about talent - it's about sound and the way that sound communicates to people. Mike Keneally

  22. #247
    Quote Originally Posted by SRS View Post
    Dallas show tonight! any other PE peeps going? yodelgoat? dgtlman?
    Could not make it - I was at Disneyland. IF he ever comes close again, I'll be there.
    I got nothin'

    ...avoiding any implication that I have ever entertained a cognizant thought.

  23. #248
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    it was announced this week that yet another concept album is being released in June 2019.
    a Neal Morse solo Rock Opera titled Jesus Christ: The Exorcist. another double CD presentation.
    he premiered this album at Morsefest last year, this is the a new studio recording.
    http://web-extract.constantcontact.c...39R8yipBVMmvZw


    don't like this guy singing. i know he's SB current vocalist, but i think Eric Gillette would have sang this song much better.
    Last edited by BravadoNJ; 03-22-2019 at 10:36 AM.

  24. #249
    I positively ADORE Neal's work w/ Spock's Beard...every note, start to finish. I really like TransAtlantic as well. Even his first 2 solo albums got a lot of playing time from me. But I cannot get into his solo prog stuff. Early on, it sounded a LOT like SB, which one would think would have been perfect. But, for me, I am just not into anything Neal does outside of TA or SB anymore.

    To top it off, I also find myself not being super into "rock opera" type records...different singers/characters, storyline, etc.

    I hate this, really, because I still really respect his talent and abilities...and like I said, his era of SB is untouchable...my loss, I suppose.

  25. #250
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BravadoNJ View Post
    it was announced this week that yet another concept album is being released in June 2019.
    a Neal Morse solo Rock Opera titled Jesus Christ: The Exorcist. another double CD presentation.
    he premiered this album at Morsefest last year, this is the a new studio recording.
    Yeah, I've just looked at the song titles on PA. I think that for the first time since I became a fan in 1997, I am going to pass. :/
    Two boys have been found rubbing linseed oil into the school cormorant.

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