In modern-day progressive rock, it seems as though there is a new supergroup every few weeks. But long before this was the norm, and before musicians were routinely involved in more than one band, there was LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT. Back in 1997, Mike Portnoy (Transatlantic, Sons of Apollo), John Petrucci (Dream Theater), Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater), and Tony Levin (King Crimson, Peter Gabriel) joined forces to create the band.
The foursome would release their iconic, self-titled debut album in 1998 and the dazzling follow-up, “LTE2” in 1999, creating a dynamic, frantic, and inventive sound all their own. The incredible creativity between the collective would prompt Petrucci and Portnoy to invite Rudess to join DREAM THEATER, effectively marking the end of this side project. However, since that time, there have been few reunions more in demand. Now, with the world in lockdown and calendars unexpectedly aligned, the inconceivable has finally happened…Liquid Tension Experiment 3.
Today the band are pleased to share the video for the album’s second single “Beating The Odds.” You can watch the video, created by Christian Rios, below.
“This was a riff that I brought into the sessions that I thought was interesting because it’s in an odd time and phrased in a way that is hard to wrap your head around at first until you understand where the groove is. When I first presented it to the guys, their initial reaction was “how are you feeling that?” When the band enters after the opening riff it probably sounds a little “odd” because the time signature is a bit unclear until the song gets going. If LTE ever had a ‘prog pop hit’ this would be it!” – John Petrucci
“I remember the look of confusion on ALL our faces when JP started playing that opening riff! It’s was seemingly so straight ahead but with a bizarre rhythmic twist! Took a while to internalize that but then we all loved it! One of the great things about LTE is the fact that we just let ourselves loose and have FUN!” – Jordan Rudess
“ ‘Beating The Odds’ is the 2nd song we wrote in the LTE3 sessions. I jokingly referred to it as “the feel-good song of the Pandemic” in the studio as it has a very upbeat happy feel to it…but also takes a few cool musical twists & turns ranging from the glorious melodic chorus & end vamp to the dark driving solo sections” – Mike Portnoy
“Starts with an off-step riff, kind of like walking upstairs backward, but at the repeat you get it. Then it opens up into “anthem land.”. Later there are unison bass lines where both Jordan and John got flangy sounds that work well with the bass. Mike’s unstoppable energy is evident here, and we’ve got more fantastic J&J solos. At only five and a half minutes we start fading out… a short song by our standards. But we’re just getting warmed up.” – Tony Levin
The 8 songs on the new “LTE 3” are a mix of 4 fully composed tracks, 2 duets, 1 on-the-fly jam and 1 meticulously arranged cover. “We composed four songs. We realized that that was the same with the first 2 albums. So, this time around we did the same,” Portnoy explains.
Jordan Rudess agrees, “It felt like a continuation, like we stopped recording LTE2 and walked in a week later we’re doing LTE3. I know it’s amazing to say, but time has passed in a moment, the blink of an eye, the chemistry is the chemistry, and it didn’t change. It was great back then and it still is.”
Petrucci comments: “Who would think that a bunch of guys our age would be playing like that? It’s relentless. It’s definitely like a statement, you know we’re back. It follows in the Liquid Tension Experiment tradition absolutely, which is, that when you press play, it steamrolls you.”
“LTE 3” Tracklisting:
1. Hypersonic (8:22)
2. Beating The Odds (6:09)
3. Liquid Evolution (3:23)
4. The Passage Of Time (7:32)
5. Chris & Kevin’s Amazing Odyssey (5:04)
6. Rhapsody In Blue (13:16)
7. Shades Of Hope (4:42)
8. Key To The Imagination (13:14)
Bonus Disc: Includes almost an hour of improvised jams.
The pre-orders have started today at this location, and the album is available as:
- Limited deluxe hot pink 3LP+2CD+Blu-ray Box Set (incl. a poster and 4 art-cards, Blu-ray includes a 5.1 surround mix with visuals, and full band interview from the studio)
- Limited 2CD+Blu-ray Artbook
- Limited 2CD Digipak
- Gatefold black 2LP+CD
- Digital album (2CD)