Progressive rockers Neal Morse Band recently announced the release of their much-anticipated fourth studio album “Innocence & Danger” on August 27th, 2021. Today they have revealed the second album single “Bird On A Wire”, with an official video produced by the band’s long time collaborator Christian Rios. Watch it below.
Mike Portnoy says this about the track, “This was the 2nd song we wrote for the new album’s sessions. The main riff & groove stemmed from an idea Randy George brought in and the chorus was something Bill had…and the intro and middle shred riffs were Eric’s…another truly collaborative effort!”
With Neal Morse Band’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 in “Innocence & Danger” to excite those prog fans who have a thirst for epics, as Neal Morse explains: “There’s one half hour epic and another that’s about 20 minutes long. I really didn’t realize 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 realize 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 jewel case & Digital Album, featuring artwork by Thomas Ewerhard (Transatlantic). Pre-orders have started today, with Radiant Records offering an exclusive tri-colored variant. To sweeten the deal even more, Radiant Records is exclusively also releasing the long-awaited 4CD/2 Blu Ray set for the Morsefest 2019 event, and fans can save $10 by picking a bundle of both releases.
Pre-order them here.
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
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 band has also announced a set of tour dates for US and Europe. See their full itinerary below.
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.”