With "Innocence & Danger", NMB (formerly Neal Morse Band) will release the highly anticipated follow-up to "The Great Adventure" (2019) on August 27. After two sprawling concept albums in a row, however, Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy, Randy George, Eric Gilette and Bill Hubauer have come up with a refreshing collection of individual songs this time. Nevertheless, it has become a double album.
It made curious when earlier this year in the update video for the recording of "Innocence & Danger" the master himself stated a dry "I didn't bring anything". Did the Neal Morse Band's fourth album actually come together without any initial Morse input? And why does the group now call itself NMB with the addition "formerly the Neal Morse Band"? We talked to the two guitarists Neal Morse and Eric Gillette
eclipsed: Neal, "Innocence & Danger" sounds more like a band affair than ever.
A splendidly funny Neal Morse, who is currently recording the keyboards for the third Flying Colors album, explains eclipsed the background of "The Great Adventure". He does not hide the fact that the creation process - similar to "Snow" - was sometimes very laborious. But that doesn't mean that Morse & Co. lacked songs. In fact, there are another 45 minutes of material that were not used at all.
eclipsed: In the press release you could read that you were not planning to write another concept album. And certainly not a sequel to "The Similitude Of A Dream". Why not?
In 2002 Neal Morse left Spock's Beard and temporarily Transatlantic to record solo records that were mainly religiously inspired but still carried the musical signature of the Californian-born composer. With "The Similitude Of A Dream", the specialist for concept albums has now tackled another major project.
The name "The Neal Morse Band" implies it: With drummer Mike Portnoy, bassist Randy George, keyboarder Bill Hubauer and guitarist Eric Gillette the namesake has meanwhile established a fixed line-up and allows other influences. We talked to Neal Morse and his eternal companion Mike Portnoy.
eclipsed: Neal, let's first look back at your performance with Spockʼs Beard at this year's "Night Of The Prog" festival. How did you experience the gig?
Neal Morse: It was just terrific. There is always a very special atmosphere up there on the Loreley. I've been invited there a few times, but I don't think I've ever had so much fun this time. If I had to compare the two Beard gigs [Loreley and Morsefest; note], then I enjoyed the one on the Loreley more, because they weren't all so tense there. At the Morsefest the cameras were also running, so we couldn't afford any mistakes.
With "Alive Again", his sixth live recording, Prog-Tausendsassa Neal Morse sweetens the waiting time for his fans until the next studio album will be released in autumn. Since the visual and audio material was recorded during a gig of the 2015 tour, the material of the then current album "The Grand Experiment" is completely included with the exception of the slip "Agenda".
Granted: During the first review of the previously released video for the title song "The Grand Experiment", disrespectful voices came up: "Morse is now making a classic rock, he can't think of anything more", they said. "Still better than falling asleep on 'Songs From November'," countered others. The shocking news: For the first time in his life Neal Morse went into the studio without prepared song ideas. What a heroic deed!
LONELY ROBOT - God Vs Man (5:41)
Album: Please Come Home (2015)
LONELY ROBOT is the new project of John Mitchell (It Bites, Arena). On his debut album "Please Come Home", the Brit has not only taken over the songwriting, but also the production and shows that despite his outstanding instrumental abilities, he pays more attention to creating the right atmosphere.
Sysyphus Verlags GmbH
Am Funkhaus 19
Phone: +49 6021 4908-0
Fax: +49 6021 4908-25
The main phone is available
from Mo-Fr 9 - 12:30 am.
eclipsed is a music magazine based in Aschaffenburg and has been on the German market since 2000. It is aimed at friends of sophisticated rock music who want to go on a new acoustic voyage of discovery month after month.
eclipsed deals in detail with the rock greats of the 60s and 70s in the areas of art rock, prog, psychedelic, blues, classic, hard rock and much more as well as with the current scene in these areas.