Saturday, July 13, 2013

MIKE PORTNOY: 'I Think I Am One Of The Most Misunderstood Artists In The World'

Jason Price of Icon Vs. Icon recently conducted an interview with drummer Mike Portnoy (ADRENALINE MOB, FLYING COLORS, THE WINERY DOGS, DREAM THEATER, AVENGED SEVENFOLD). A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.

Icon Vs. Icon: Do you feel there are a lot of misconceptions circulating about you?

Portnoy: I think I am one of the most misunderstood artists in the world! [laughs] Any time I go on the Internet and I see these web sites with an article with a quote for shock value as the headline, I realize the
misconceptions about me that are out there by the fans and non-fans as
well. I think the biggest one is that I am band-jumping or
opportunity-jumping and jumping from band to band. That is not the case. Like I just said to you, it is me following my heart. I spent 25 years
in one band and was so unbelievably dedicated to one band. I don't think you will find more dedication than I do for what I did for DREAM THEATER for 25 years. I mean, I literally oversaw every single step, every
minute of the day. You won't find a more committed artist than me. I did that for 25 years, so I think the biggest misconception is that I am
not committed. That is so far from the truth. I am just doing lots of
different things. I am enjoying having this musical freedom right now.
Every one of the bands and projects I am involved with are so different
from each other. THE WINERY DOGS is one thing, TRANSATLANTIC is another, ADRENALINE MOB is something else. There are each so different from the other and I
give all I can to each of them. The biggest problem is when you give
100% to five different things, inevitably there are going to be schedule clashes and it is not always going to be easy to juggle so many things. That is one of the difficulties I have been having lately and I am
trying to make it all work. I am doing my best and I don't think you are going to find an artist with a stronger work ethic than I have. I am a
total workaholic and passionate about everything I do. It is hard to
always juggle it all without a scheduling conflict here or there! That
has been the only problem, trying to solve that and make it all work.

Icon Vs. Icon: Misconceptions aside, your work speaks for itself and would make for a
very interesting autobiography at some point. Is that a project you have considered undertaking in the future?

Portnoy: Yeah. Actually, after I left DREAM THEATER, I was approached by several different companies about doing that. I just felt for a while after I left DREAM THEATER, there was so much drama and controversy. No matter what I said, it got
taken out of context and blown out of proportion. That made me very gun
shy about doing interviews or taking openly. If I am going to do a book, I am going to talk openly. I want to be able to tell it all and not
pull punches or bullshit anything. I have always prided myself on being
very honest and open with the fans, so if I was to do a book, it would
have to be that way. I think right now, it is all still too fresh. There is still way too much drama online and the fans are so passionate and
dramatic about it all, I wouldn't want to do a book right now. I think
it is still needs time for the wounds to heal and the smoke to clear.
Surely one of these days I would love to do it. There was a DREAM THEATER biography which came out years ago I was very involved with. I spent a
tremendous amount of time going through the history of the band and
contributed a lot to that book. That is probably the closest to any kind of biography so far having to do with my career.

Icon Vs. Icon: When looking back on your incredible and still very productive career, how do you feel you have evolved as an artist?

Portnoy: My evolution goes beyond the drums. I think my evolution as an artist
has to do with playing with all of these different bands and playing
different roles within each of them, playing with different people and
exploring different styles. My evolution as a drummer comes from having a different kind of drum kit or setup in each of the bands and I have to
play stylistically different for each of them. That has been my
evolution. That is another reason why I needed to get some time away
from DREAM THEATER. I didn't want to, for the rest of my life, be just the guy from DREAM THEATER. I didn't want DREAM THEATER to define my entire life and career. I felt I had a lot more to say and had many, many different styles within me which I wanted to explore.
That has been the evolution of my career, branching out and doing all of these things. Of course, DREAM THEATER will be a huge, huge part of my of my legacy but I would hope the other things are also a part of it as well. Everything I am doing is all part of the story of who I am.

Icon Vs. Icon: What else is on the horizon for you as an artist. Is there still new territory you are looking to tackle?

Portnoy: I am very fulfilled at the moment. Ya know, there are so many different things going on in my career at the moment and they have me very
fulfilled. As I said, it is hard enough to juggle what exists, so I am
not looking to add many more things on to the plate at the moment. I am
really just looking to continue to develop what is already happening.
For the moment, the focus is on THE WINERY DOGS. That is going to be the focus of everything I am doing over the next six to twelve
months on the road. I am planning on traveling and touring as much as I
can with this great new band. For the moment, that is the focus.
Inevitably, there are always a million other things. There is a FLYING COLORS Blu-ray coming out later this year. There is PSMS [PORTNOY SHEEHAN MACALPINE SHERINIAN] Blu-ray coming out in September and a TRANSATLANTIC album at the beginning of 2014 but THE WINERY DOGS is definitely going to be the focus for awhile.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

BLACKMORE'S NIGHT: 'Dancer And The Moon' Video Released

"Dancer And The Moon", the new video from BLACKMORE'S NIGHT, the renaissance-inspired rock band formed by Ritchie Blackmore and his wife Candice Night, can be seen below. The song is the title track of BLACKMORE'S NIGHT's new album, which was released on June 11 in North America and June 14
in Europe in regular CD configuration and deluxe edition in digipak,
including a bonus DVD featuring a 40-minute "making-of-the-album"
documentary and acoustic versions of "The Spinner's Tale", "Somewhere Over The Sea/Moon Was Shining", "The Ashgrove" and "Queen For A Day". The album was also made available in a super-deluxe edition strictly
limited to 2000 copies packaged in a polyston frame with the cover
artwork printed on canvas and including a black tote bag with BLACKMORE'S NIGHT artwork, four BLACKMORE'S NIGHT pins, a certificate of authenticity and, of course, the CD/DVD edition.

The first single from "Dancer And The Moon", entitled "The Moon Is Shining (Somewhere Over The Sea)", was released digitally in May. This beautiful new song is "based on an old folk Czech melody which Candice [Night, BLACKMORE'S NIGHT singer and Ritchie's wife] and I thought were very melodic and haunting," says Ritchie Blackmore. "We adapted and arranged to suit more of a rock structure. We also
played it as a ballad as it was originally intended. We asked several of our Czech friends what it was called but they couldn't tell us, so it
remains a mystery"."

Progressive Music Awards 2013 announce nominations

Progressive Music Awards 2013 announce nominations

InsideOut Music Header

The Progressive Music Awards 2013 from UK's Prog Magazine has been announced to take place this year on the 3rd September at Kew Gardens in London. They have also revealed the nominations, and InsideOut & Superball Music have been given a stunning 14 in total between them. Those bands nominated can be found below, and fans can show their support by voting at the following link where you will also be given a chance to win a bag of prog goodies from the bands nominated.

Voting takes place here:

InsideOut / Superball Music nominations:

Sound Of Contact

Steve Hackett - Genesis Revisited II Hammersmith Apollo
Devin Townsend Project - Retinal Circus
Neal Morse/The Flower Kings - Camden Electric Ballroom

Long Distance Calling

Riverside - Celebrity Touch
Devin Townsend Project - True North
Spock's Beard - Afterthoughts

Steve Hackett - Genesis Revisited II
Spock's Beard - Brief Nocturnes and Dreamless Sleep

Steve Hackett
The Flower Kings

DREAM THEATER: New Album Release Date, Cover Artwork, Track Listing Revealed

Progressive metal giants DREAM THEATER will release their new, self-titled album — the band's 12th studio release overall, and fourth with Roadrunner Records — on September 24.

Says guitarist John Petrucci about "Dream Theater": "I see every new album as an opportunity to start over. To either build or improve upon a direction that has been evolving over time or to
completely break new ground.

"This is the first self-titled
album of our career and there is nothing I can think of that makes a
statement of musical and creative identity stronger than that. We've
fully explored all of the elements that make us unique, from the epic
and intense to the atmospheric and cinematic.

"We're incredibly excited about 'Dream Theater' and can't wait for everyone to hear it."

The nine-track disc was recorded at Cove City Studio in Glen Cove, Long Island, with Petrucci producing and Richard Chycki engineering and mixing. It's the band's second album with drummer Mike Mangini, and the first one on which he was a part of the writing process from Day One.

In January, Petrucci said of Mangini's work: "When people hear the drumming on this album, they're gonna be
pretty freaked out. On the last album, he did a great job, but he wasn't there for the writing process and he was interpreting drum parts that I had programmed. Even though he used his creativity, of course, to
change them up and do his thing, I feel like now he's just Mike Mangini unleashed. It's all him. It's all his creativity, all his decisions and ideas and man, the guy's an animal."

"Dream Theater" track listing:

01. False Awakening Suite
I. Sleep Paralysis
II. Night Terrors
III. Lucid Dream
02. The Enemy Inside
03. The Looking Glass
04. Enigma Machine
05. The Bigger Picture
06. Behind The Veil
07. Surrender To Reason
08. Along For The Ride
09. Illumination Theory
I. Paradoxe de la Lumière Noire
II. Live, Die, Kill
III. The Embracing Circle
IV. The Pursuit of Truth
V. Surrender, Trust & Passion

"Dream Theater" will be available in a wide range of distinctive versions, including
standard and special edition CDs, 180-gram double LP, and a
limited-edition boxed set. Pre-orders are scheduled to launch in July at the Roadrunner Records webstore.

DREAM THEATER will be on tour in Europe in January and February 2014, and in North America in March 2014.

"Live At Luna Park", DREAM THEATER's live concert, which was previously scheduled for release in May via Eagle Rock Entertainment, will now drop in North America on November 5 as a Blu-ray, 2DVD, 2DVD + 3CD, Blu-ray + 3CD, deluxe edition with 40-page book, Blu-ray + 2DVD +
3CD, and digital video via iTunes.

"Live At Luna Park" was filmed over two nights in South America — home to one of DREAM THEATER's most ardent fanbases. The DVD was filmed August 19 and August 20, 2012
at Estadio Luna Park in Buenos Aires, Argentina after a 15-month world
tour, hitting 35 countries.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

GEOFF TATE's 'No-Gossip' Interview With 'The Metal Factory'

Jack Antonio spoke with QUEENSRŸCHE singer Geoff Tate on the June 18 episode of "The Metal Factory" radio show on Insane Realm Radio. According to Jack, "this is a 'no-gossip interview' where Geoff talks about the music and the 'Operation: Mindcrime' 25th-anniversary tour." You can now listen to the chat using the Mixcloud player below.

"Frequency Unknown", the new album from the Geoff Tate-fronted version of QUEENSRŸCHE, sold around 5,500 copies in its first week of release in the United
States to land at position No. 82 on The Billboard 200 chart.

Deadline Music/Cleopatra Records is making available the "new and improved" mixes of "Frequency Unknown" to any customers who have purchased the original mix version and are
dissatisfied with the audio. Simply e-mail the label a scan of your
actual receipt for the physical CD to and they
will happily send you a replacement disc — at no charge whatsoever. No
questions asked!

"Frequency Unknown" was released on April 23. The CD was produced by Jason Slater at a studio in Northern California.

Asked about the decision to remix "Frequency Unknown" shortly before the album's release, Tate told "The Continental Breakfast With James & Raina": "We were a little rushed on the mixing end of it, so after listening to it back, we're having some of the songs remixed now before the album
comes out. But that's typical with records — you have to have them in on time. So sometimes you compromise in areas. Luckily, with this
situation, we get to go back and correct some areas in the sound where
we thought it was kind of lacking. So that's fine. I've done that on…
gosh… probably three quarters of the records I've ever made. It's no new thing, but it's a luxury when you get to fix it."

"Frequency Unknown" is packaged with bonus tracks — four QUEENSRŸCHE classics, newly recorded, including the smash hit single "Silent Lucidity". Guest musicians on the CD include K.K. Downing (JUDAS PRIEST), Chris Poland (MEGADETH), Ty Tabor (KING'S X), Paul Bostaph (SLAYER, TESTAMENT, EXODUS), Lita Ford, Brad Gillis (NIGHT RANGER), Dave Meniketti (Y&T) and Craig Locicero (FORBIDDEN).