I was initially a little reluctant to get this, although I have the first two; the reason being my concerns about the possible domination by Neal Morse. I acknowledge his musical prowess but have become wary of his fixated output. However - I needn't have worried as this is a GROUP affair; indeed Stolt, Trewavas and Portnoy frequently lead things. Reference has been made by one or two reviewers to Portnoys imposing drumming; well, he is an imposing drummer. Personally, I don't think he is that overpowering. Listening to this one appreciates Trewavas's solid bass and assured playing and Stolt's tight guitar runs. Of course Morse's smooth multi-instrumental skills are pretty much a backbone. The title track is a 12 part 78 minute excursion into a variety of styles reflecting the performers various characters and influences; it's all played to perfection and very much a group effort - it might be my imagination, but I kept picking up The Beatles and Yes - what a mix. Then - it is Marillion, Flower Kings and Spock's Beard all rolled into one - not much Dream Theater!! I am reviewing the Special Edition 2 disc set and believe it well worth getting. CD2 starts with 4 originals the most surprising of which, is Trewavas's "Lending a Hand" - a even paced rock song led by Pete's plaintive voice and some really lush instrumentation. They have fun with the Genesis cover - "The Return of the Giant Hogweed" which builds to a frantic climax. Another surprise is a cover of Procol Harum's "A Salty Dog" with Mike Portnoy taking the vocal role and dedicating it to his father. It ends with a rousing "Soul Sacrifice" - a real belter. I am very glad Transatlantic have returned - they made it all worthwhile; all four playing together as one but each making their mark. A first class rock album from a first class outfit. My fears are allayed and - well; Neal's done good!!
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