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Thread: New Neal Morse band album

  1. #1
    Member rickawakeman's Avatar
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    New Neal Morse band album

    Always eagerly anticipated at Chez Rick, as will the tour dates...

    ** OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE **
    NMB are pleased to announce the release of their much-anticipated fourth studio album Innocence & Danger on August 27th, 2021.
    With NMB’s previous two releases being concept albums, it’s perhaps remarkable that Innocence & Danger is a series of unrelated songs, but drummer Mike Portnoy says “After two sprawling back to back double concept albums in a row, it was refreshing to get back to writing a collection of unrelated individual songs in the vein of our first album.”
    Indeed, making this album came easy to the band; while the initial inspiration came particularly from Bill Hubauer (keyboards) and Randy George (bass), the ideas flowed from everybody from there on, as George recalls: “I am excited about the level of collaboration that we achieved on this one. We even went in with a lot of ideas that weren’t necessarily developed, and I think in the end we have something that represents the best of everybody in the band.”
    In fact – like its two acclaimed predecessors – Innocence & Danger is a double-album by inspiration, rather than design, as Portnoy explains: “As much as we wanted to try and keep it to a single album after having just done two double albums, we wrote so much material that we found ourselves with our third double album in a row! That’s pretty prog!”
    There is also plenty: “There's one half hour epic and another that's about 20 minutes long. I really didn't realise that they were that long when we were recording them, which I guess is great because if a movie is really good, you don't realise that it's three hours long! But there are also some shorter songs: some have poppier elements, some are heavier and some have three part acoustic sections. I’m excited about all of it, really.”
    The album will be released as a Limited 2CD+DVD Digipak (featuring a Making Of documentary), 3LP+2CD Boxset, Standard 2CD Jewelcase & Digital Album, featuring artwork by Thomas Ewerhard (Transatlantic). Pre-orders start on the 18th June, and the full track-listing is below:
    CD 1 (Innocence):
    1. Do It All Again 08:55
    2. Bird On A Wire 07:22
    3. Your Place In The Sun 04:12
    4. Another Story To Tell 04:50
    5. The Way It Had To Be 07:14
    6. Emergence 03:12
    7. Not Afraid Pt. 1 04:53
    8. Bridge Over Troubled Water 08:08
    CD 2 (Danger):
    1. Not Afraid Pt. 2 19:32
    2. Beyond The Years 31:22
    The Neal Morse Band (now NMB) was formed in 2012, featuring long-time collaborators Neal Morse (vocals, keyboards and guitars), Mike Portnoy (drums, vocals) and Randy George (bass), as well as Bill Hubauer (keyboards, vocals) and Eric Gillette (guitars, vocals). The band’s first album, The Grand Experiment, showed both a freshness and maturity that was further developed in 2016’s The Similitude Of A Dream, 2019’s The Great Adventure and 2021’s Innocence & Danger.
    Look for NMB on tour in North America in October 2021 and in Europe throughout May/June 2022. Tour dates coming soon!

    Blessings,
    The Radiant Records Team

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    Maybe it's just me feeling grumpy today but I really think they need to show a little restraint and concision. Another double feels like way too much to take in, especially after the mammoth Transatlantic thing and the previous 2 double concept albums.

  3. #3
    I always appreciate new music from them mostly because I love the light touch on the drums.
    No matter what anyone says, you are the decider of how you will listen to music.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Splicer View Post
    I always appreciate new music from them mostly because I love the light touch on the drums.
    I bet you love 2 CDs' worth of that light touch!

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    There are no words to describe how happy I am about this news. I know a lot of people don't care for Neal - his music or his message - but I dig it. A lot. Almost all of it. And all the scuttlebutt about Portnoy's drumming: his bombastic style fits Neal's music perfectly. Different strokes, I guess, but I will not tolerate any Neal-bashing here. No sir!!!
    Prog's Not Dead

  6. #6
    I'm looking forward to this one too !

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    Quote Originally Posted by miamiscot View Post
    There are no words to describe how happy I am about this news. I know a lot of people don't care for Neal - his music or his message - but I dig it. A lot. Almost all of it. And all the scuttlebutt about Portnoy's drumming: his bombastic style fits Neal's music perfectly. Different strokes, I guess, but I will not tolerate any Neal-bashing here. No sir!!!
    It was tongue in cheek, at least as far as I'm concerned. I enjoy Neal's music, though in relatively small doses. I just kind of feel overwhelmed by all those double albums. Sometimes you need to know what to leave out, especially when your music is so formulaic.

    If he released a White Album kind of double album that would be all over the place stylistically with some suprising experiments, I might raise an eyebrow. But here I just get a feeling of been there done that.

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    I have to admit that I sometimes suffer from a bit of Neil overload since he and his bands put out so much stuff, but this one will be an auto buy for me. I think the NMB material he has been doing is some of the best in his career.

  9. #9
    My approach to double albums is to just listen to the first disc for a while and then move on the second if the first inspires. Took me a week to move to disc 2 of Similitude. Haven't made it to disc 2 of Adventure yet LOL.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeFrog View Post
    Maybe it's just me feeling grumpy today but I really think they need to show a little restraint and concision. Another double feels like way too much to take in, especially after the mammoth Transatlantic thing and the previous 2 double concept albums.
    Indeed, does he compose in his sleep? Another one?? Oh god no, no, no.....

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    Quote Originally Posted by ca1ore View Post
    My approach to double albums is to just listen to the first disc for a while and then move on the second if the first inspires. Took me a week to move to disc 2 of Similitude. Haven't made it to disc 2 of Adventure yet LOL.
    I do that too. I typically will listen to one disc at a time for a while before moving on to the 2nd one. Finding a 2 hour plus block to listen to a piece of music is difficult.

  12. #12
    ALL ACCESS Gruno's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miamiscot View Post
    There are no words to describe how happy I am about this news. I know a lot of people don't care for Neal - his music or his message - but I dig it. A lot. Almost all of it. And all the scuttlebutt about Portnoy's drumming: his bombastic style fits Neal's music perfectly. Different strokes, I guess, but I will not tolerate any Neal-bashing here. No sir!!!
    I admire your undying passion for Neal Morse's output.

  13. #13
    The fact that his one is not a concept album actually makes me a bit more interested. If it's just a collection of songs (i.e. no overtures, no recurring motifs/themes, etc.) I find that much less fatiguing. I really liked their Grand Experiment album, so if this is in a similar vein (at least in spirit) I'd be game for checking it out.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by miamiscot View Post
    There are no words to describe how happy I am about this news. I know a lot of people don't care for Neal - his music or his message - but I dig it. A lot. Almost all of it. And all the scuttlebutt about Portnoy's drumming: his bombastic style fits Neal's music perfectly. Different strokes, I guess, but I will not tolerate any Neal-bashing here. No sir!!!
    It must great to be a fan of such a prolific artist.
    I have a lot of respect for Neal's art, although I stopped following him around Momentum.
    I'll keep an open ear for this new NMB material. After all, I reconnected with the Flower Kings after having given up on them for more than ten years.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aith01 View Post
    The fact that his one is not a concept album actually makes me a bit more interested. If it's just a collection of songs (i.e. no overtures, no recurring motifs/themes, etc.) I find that much less fatiguing. I really liked their Grand Experiment album, so if this is in a similar vein (at least in spirit) I'd be game for checking it out.
    That's my take as well.
    WANTED: Sig-worthy quote.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ca1ore View Post
    My approach to double albums is to just listen to the first disc for a while and then move on the second if the first inspires. Took me a week to move to disc 2 of Similitude. Haven't made it to disc 2 of Adventure yet LOL.
    Oh no!!! Disc 2 of The Great Adventure is the keeper!!! So much stronger than the first disc which reprises the main theme too much for my taste. You must correct that situation!!!
    Prog's Not Dead

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    Quote Originally Posted by Interstellar View Post
    It must great to be a fan of such a prolific artist.
    I have a lot of respect for Neal's art, although I stopped following him around Momentum.
    I'll keep an open ear for this new NMB material. After all, I reconnected with the Flower Kings after having given up on them for more than ten years.
    Momentum is the only Neal Morse album I don't connect with (although the epic is terrific) so I too was ready to give up. Then Transatlantic released Kaleidoscope and (again) I was not impressed. But, alas, the Neal Morse Band happened and I feel it totally revitalized him and his writing. The first three NMB albums are all inspired works. And the last two Neal-associated releases have been all time greats (IMHO): Sola Gratia and The Absolute Universe both completely floor me. Yeah, I'm kind of a fan of his.

    I am glad Innocence And Danger isn't a concept album. Neal does bring the recurring themes back a bit too often at times. It's fine during the course of an epic song but throughout an entire album? (Minor gripe.)

    As far as The Flower Kings go - I'm with you about Islands. What a great way to bring TFK's back into relevance. Very excited to see where Roine takes things with his new-fangled Kings.
    Prog's Not Dead

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    Quote Originally Posted by Poisoned Youth View Post
    That's my take as well.
    Same here. I'm happy to get away from a concept album this time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aith01 View Post
    The fact that his one is not a concept album actually makes me a bit more interested. If it's just a collection of songs (i.e. no overtures, no recurring motifs/themes, etc.) I find that much less fatiguing. I really liked their Grand Experiment album, so if this is in a similar vein (at least in spirit) I'd be game for checking it out.
    I'm definitely in agreement with this as well.
    I just don't feel the sprawl is mandatory though.

  20. #20
    Auto buy!

  21. #21
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    Do we know for sure that "Bird on a Wire" and "Bridge Over Troubled Waters" are covers, or just poorly chosen titles?

    Because it seems odd to protest that there was just too much material for a single album and then include 15 minutes of cover material in the main sequence of the first disc.
    "I have not yet begun to procrastinate."

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    without the 2 covers, it probably would have all fit on one CD

  23. #23
    Do we even know that they’re covers? The titles are slightly different.

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    Like I said, "poorly chosen titles" is also a possibility.
    "I have not yet begun to procrastinate."

  25. #25
    Don’t know that I’d call them poorly chosen either. There’s only so many words in the English language.

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