Their 1999 debut "The Great Divide" and its follow-up "Liberation" (2001), both released on the Magna Carta label, were well received by fans of progressive music with a metal twist worldwide. But instead of simply continuing to follow the path they had successfully taken, the New York band wanted to renew themselves musically. "We wanted to get more involved with songwriting, explore other musical fields. That didn't fit with what the label wanted anymore," guitarist Jimmy Pappas says. Singer and keyboardist Josh Pincus adds, "When recording albums for Magna Carta, we always tried to balance the progressive, wild parts and the structured songwriting parts. Everyone in the band liked the 'songbands,' as I call them: Kansas, Rush, also Deep Purple, Black Sabbath. They are all based on really good songs with high recall value. After the two progressive albums with Magna Carta, we felt a bit limited, so we decided to focus more on writing catchy songs."