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PODCAST: Top 5 Transatlantic Songs with Pete Trewavas

Transatlantic and Marillion bassist Pete Trewavas joins the podcast to talk about the new Transatlantic releases The Absolute Universe and to pick the top 5 songs by the prog supergroup. You can listen or watch the podcast below.

Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy, Roine Stolt & Pete Trewavas took things up a level with Transatlantic’s 5th studio release from  ‘The Absolute Universe’. Released on February 5th, 2021, ‘The Absolute Universe’ was released in two versions: ‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’ & ‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’. While each album is available on CD, LP & Digitally, there is also ‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’, which collects both versions together in one lavish package that includes 5LP’s, 3CD’s & a Blu-ray that includes a special mix that combines both versions into a third unique version in 5.1 surround sound with visuals and a behind the scenes documentary. You can check out our reviews of both albums here:

The Breath of Life review

Forevermore review

For the full audio click the podcast link or download the podcast on
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The full list of formats is below, and you can order now here: https://transatlantic.lnk.to/TheAbsoluteUniverse

‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’
Available as:
Single CD Edition, Gatefold 2LP+CD, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
1. Overture
2. Reaching For The Sky
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Take Now My Soul
6. Looking For The Light
7. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
8. Owl Howl
9. Solitude
10. Belong
11. Can You Feel It
12. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
13. The Greatest Story Never Ends
14. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’
Available as:
2CD Edition, 3LP+2CD Boxset, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
Disc 1:
1. Overture
2. Heart Like A Whirlwind
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Swing High, Swing Low
6. Bully
7. Rainbow Sky
8. Looking For The Light
9. The World We Used To Know

Disc 2:
1. The Sun Comes Up Today
2. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
3. Owl Howl
4. Solitude
5. Belong
6. Lonesome Rebel
7. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
8. The Greatest Story Never Ends
9. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’
Limited Deluxe Clear 5LP+3CD+Blu-Ray Box-set – contained within a foil-finished lift-off box with extended 16-page LP booklet & 60x60cm poster. Includes both versions of the album over 5LP’s and 3CD’s, plus a Blu-Ray with 5.1 mix & documentary.

Blu-Ray Track-listing:

1. Overture (5.1 Surround Mix)
2. Reaching For The Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
3. Higher Than The Morning (5.1 Surround Mix)
4. The Darkness In The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
5. Take Now My Soul (5.1 Surround Mix)
6. Bully (5.1 Surround Mix)
7. Rainbow Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
8. Looking For The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
9. The World We Used To Know (5.1 Surround Mix)
10. The Sun Comes Up Today (5.1 Surround Mix)
11. Love Made A Way (Prelude) (5.1 Surround Mix)
12. Owl Howl (5.1 Surround Mix)
13. Solitude (5.1 Surround Mix)
14. Belong (5.1 Surround Mix)
15. Lonesome Rebel (5.1 Surround Mix)
16. Can You Feel It (5.1 Surround Mix)
17. Looking For The Light (Reprise) (5.1 Surround Mix)
18. The Greatest Story Never Ends (5.1 Surround Mix)
19. Love Made A Way (5.1 Surround Mix)
20. The Making of The Absolute Universe (Documentary)

 

The post PODCAST: Top 5 Transatlantic Songs with Pete Trewavas appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Transatlantic – The Absolute Universe: The Breath of Life (Album Review)

by Geoff Bailie

SPOILER ALERT!

Fans often explain that one of the joys of the prog genre is that greater rewards are reaped on the 5th, 10th or 20th listen to a piece of music which you may not get on the first hit. So my dilemma when I received copies of both The Absolute Universe Forevermore and The Breath of Life albums by Transatlantic was – how do I tackle this in a way that I get the most benefit from this incredible original approach to a release. Well, I decided to start with The Breath of Life and spend time getting to know it before diving into Forevermore.

We’ve known since September 2019 that an album was in the works and we also know all sorts of things happened that meant it’s taken a bit longer than normal to get here. So what we have is a single disc of tracks, linked together with and interweaving themes similar in format to The Whirlwind (as compared to TA 1,3 and 4). And I think it’s fair to say that this version has some very close parallels with that album.

The opening overture and first song “Reaching For The Sky” kick things off in true, majestic Transatlantic style. I have to admit hearing that combination of Portnoy drums, Stolt guitar, Trewawas bass and Morse Hammond organ is like a joyful reunion with old friends wafter a period of absence. We dive straight into an overture laden with themes and variations hinting at what lies ahead, like all overtures it gains a depth of appreciation when you’re familiar enough with the rest of the album to pick out the references. The overall feeling is – the gang’s all here, and they’ve got lots to give!

We know from interviews with the band that Neal Morse was given control of this version and elements of the material were adapted, given new lyrics, reconstructed and reshaped. The overture gives way to “Reaching For The Sky” and there is so much that can be said about this song… we have Neal, Pete and Mike taking lead vocals… we’ve got “a heart like a Whirlwind”… and we’ve got references to these pandemic times – “mask” “locked away” “hit the streets and you get arrested”. The melody and lyric exudes some sort of joy within the chaos and the search – just listen to those piano glissandos!!! – before moving to a sense of reflection in the “far and away” ending which precedes a signature Stolt ‘wah solo’. “Higher Than The Morning”s jazzy bounce begins with the “Belong” theme, before moving into one of the main lyrical themes… how selfishness and self reliance are traps we can easily fall into, to our detriment. We glide from here to “The Darkness In The Light”, the first distinctive Roine lead on the album, which combines an intricate, quite funky style with a Dylan-like inflection in places. This album takes the band’s vocal interplays to the next level, carefully applied to add color and contrast – a great example of this being Neal’s echoes of Roine’s lyrics in the chorus. That continues in the next track, “Take Now My Soul,” which gets an extra lift when Mike Portnoy sings verse 2. For people wondering, this song is a good one to illustrate the differences between the album versions. On Forevermore, this slot is filled with a song called “Swing High, Swing Low”. Verse 1 of each song has the same melody but where “Take Now My Soul” is quite stripped back, “Swing High”… has extra acoustic overdubs and atmospheres right from the start, and this continues as the song progresses. They both reach the same guitar solo, and instrumental play out, with the spacier Take Now, contrasting with the more dense “Swing High.” Put it this way: I like chocolate ice cream and I like strawberry ice cream. It’s a great thing that both exist and on a given day I may choose one – but that’s no reflection on the other! I’d also point out that as with “Reaching For The Sky,” the “Take Now”… lyrics contain further allusions to (escape from) lockdown which cements this lyrical theme, less evident on Forevermore.

The Mike-sung “Looking For The Light” comes next and it’s one of the albums heavier, but no less melodic, moments. Lyrically the theme is ego and selfishness, with references to objectivism/ Ayn Rand (but this is no philosophy lesson!) and of course the music is incredible… after a few listens you’ll start picking up the cross references that appear in the end section of this track and… watch this space cos it will be back. A foreshadowing of the finale, “Love Made A Way” comes next, before we take off into the very proggy “Owl Howl”! There are incredible dynamics here, colliding time signatures and cool atmospheres such as the appearance of a Mellotron flute duetting with Pete’s bass, before the police siren chatter of the Moog solo breaks in, its dissonance gradually becoming more melodic, before collapsing in static. The air is clearer for some Floyd-y swells over a piano backing, as Pete’s vocal joins to present “Solitude”, one of his vocal showcases. It’s a great contrast to the complexity of the earlier songs, and it builds to both reprise and foreshadow other musical elements of the album.

It may sound strange to anyone reading this review in advance, but don’t be concerned when I say that what sounds like the voices of Minions herald what is the incredible closing salvo of this album – you’ll know what I mean when you hear it! The track “Belong” while being less than 3 minutes long is a payoff of a musical theme which you’ve been hearing but probably not realizing throughout the album, and has some very cool slightly jazzy Roine lead guitar work and corresponding Hammond organ.

“Can You Feel It” is the unique track that you get on Breath of Life which doesn’t appear in the other version. Neal comments in the Making of video that he thought he had presented it to the band at the writing sessions in Sweden, but realized he had forgotten about it… and well I’m glad he remembered it! It’s a rallying cry style song, heralding what’s coming and blends perfectly into the Reprise of “Looking For The Light,” an instrumental workout which, like the video for the single, takes us on what feels like a journey through space or time, building in burgeoning intensity to the peak of Neal’s vocal part, joined by Mike, expressing the desperation of isolation and self reliance, but encouraging you to not give up the search for the light within the darkness. A double time section builds to a series of staccato rhythm-laden breakdowns which conjure images of striving toward a goal that we reach with a tempo shift into Pete’s vocal standout of the album in “The Greatest Story Never Ends.” Can I ask you to listen out for one of my album highlights… a very small thing, but wait for the two pipe organ chords which get repeated in this track… you’ll know it when you hear it! The pace in the closing instrumental section is relentless and it’s master-class in the sort of arrangements and performances that we’ve come to love from this band.

The album closes with a suitably grand finale, as the intensity of the previous 15 minutes fades to a Morse piano and vocal, lightly supported by the band. When the TA group harmonies kick it, it will bring a smile to your face, while, lyrically, we get the resolution to the earlier searching in the chaos… “free, cos it costs nothing… love, even down to me”. Oh , and stay tuned because rather than crashing to an end, there is a very cool atmospheric play out on the album, like a post-credits sequence!

Trying to stand back and look at this 64 minute album on its own merits, this is the sort of album I would happily give to any musical explorer as being one of the very best examples of the genre today. Once again, Transatlantic have blended their four personalities to produce an album that is packed with melody, harmony and clever arrangements, musically complex, with a contemporary lyrical concept. My instant reaction to my first listen was to simply go back and start my second one!

Released on Feb 5th, 2021 on InsideOutMusic
Key Tracks: Reaching For The Sky, Take Now My Soul, Can You Feel It

‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’
Track-listing:
1. Overture
2. Reaching For The Sky
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Take Now My Soul
6. Looking For The Light
7. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
8. Owl Howl
9. Solitude
10. Belong
11. Can You Feel It
12. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
13. The Greatest Story Never Ends
14. Love Made A Way

https://transatlantic.lnk.to/TheAbsoluteUniverse

Neal Morse – Keyboards and Vocals
Roine Stolt – Guitars and Vocals
Mike Portnoy – Drums and Vocals
Pete Trewavas – Bass and Vocals

The post Transatlantic – The Absolute Universe: The Breath of Life (Album Review) appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Transatlantic – The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Album Review)

by Prog Nick

SPOILER ALERT!

Some things go without saying – like power of music, the majesty of Prog and the amount of expectation that has been created in the lead-up to Transatlantic’s fifth studio release, The Absolute Universe. Social media has been aflame and predictions have reached fever pitch (especially regarding the release formats.) This was to be expected, because Transatlantic are THE Prog supergroup and the undeniable torch-bearers for modern melodic Prog. All the frenzied expectation was inevitable, and the inordinate level of speculation that we witnessed was bound to manifest itself. It all goes without saying.

But nothing could have prepared us for what has ultimately been delivered. The Absolute Universe is a release that is vast beyond description. It presents three distinct packages and two versions of the album, each a variation on the other, but different enough to qualify as a separate album. The two album version titles are references to previous Transatlantic lyrics, namely: Foverermore (Extended Version – 2 CD) and The Breath of Life (Abridged Version – 1 CD.) These titles will sound unnervingly familiar, being pay-off lines from previous Transatlantic songs. Both versions are available in a gigantic combined deluxe edition entitled The Ultimate Edition. The entire offering is so enormous that a review of all three presentations is impossible – quite frankly, there are not enough words to adequately describe all those notes.

This review will evaluate the Foverermore version, simply because at 90 minutes, it contains more content. But one comment on The Breath of Life is necessary: do not be deluded into thinking that it is just an abbreviated version of Forevermore. It is much more than just that. It certainly is a condensation of the double album into a shorter time, but it remarkably also delivers different content, some re-compositions, alternative material and discreet new deliveries, especially in the vocal department. It even has a song not found on Forevermore, the Neal Morse-led “Can You Feel It.” The condensed version has the unstated but clear feel of a Neal Morse edit. Its transitions are a little starker than those of Forevermore, but it most definitely offers its own delights. Do you need both versions? In my opinion, you will not regret the decision to purchase both (or all three), and you will certainly not feel that you have made an unnecessary double purchase.

On to Foverermore. Reviewing a work like this is no mean task, because a review is, after all, just words, and this vast album will, of itself, render you speechless. It is that good. If you were enamored of The Whirlwind and were mildly impressed by Kaleidoscope, this one, which stylistically meets somewhere in the middle, will silence any doubts.

The opening motif, introduced in “Overture,” is highly cinematic while surprisingly simple. It is just a five-note progression that could sit quite easily in a 1960’s thriller. It seems almost innocuous to begin with, but no band can develop a theme like Transatlantic can. By the end of the album, this central recurring theme has been turned and twisted, cooked and curled, and sculpted into every interpretation and treatment imaginable. While the theme is, in its unembellished form, simpler, say, than that of The Whirlwind, its simplicity allows for all sorts of other treasures to be revealed. It recurs with consistency throughout the album but there are, unsurprisingly, many more, and even stronger recurring themes, like the ‘Belong’ theme that we first hear in “Heart Is Like A Whirlwind.” With this motif, your ‘Now We’re Talking’ gene will kick in, and it will all get even better from there.

“Heart Like a Whirlwind” (“Reaching For the Sky” on the abridged version) starts things off on an uplifting note. Morse, Portnoy and Trewavas all provide excellent lead vocals and Stolt’s solo is inspiring. The catchy refrain ‘Heart is like a whirlwind’ immediately reveals that there will be some type of thematic re-visitation to Transatlantic’s third album, regarded by many to be their masterwork. The various recurring themes introduced thereafter are too numerous to mention, though it should be said that the lyrical reference to The Whirlwind surfaces in many different contexts. This time, the Whirlwind is less about the end-times and more about personal inner revelation set in a cosmic backdrop. No other band in Prog would be audacious enough to take one of the most beloved concepts in the genre and re-work it down to a personal perspective it in this way. But Mr. Morse and company are unafraid. Enough said – let your ears do the discovery, suffice it to say that the recurrence of many themes makes The Absolute Universe a concept album quite unlike any you have heard before. Can music render you speechless? Absolutely.

“Higher than the Morning” introduces the theme ‘Belong, belong, better to belong’. With a harmony chorus that would make CSNY proud, this is a highly alluring melody. Stolt and Morse trade vocals, and at one point there is a cynicism in Morse’s voice, perfectly in sync with the lyrics. Next song “The Darkness in the Light” is a solid rocker built around Trewavas’ legendary bass-growl. He exceeds even his own high standards on this song, which reminds us why he is who he is.

“Swing High Swing Low” (“Take Now My Soul” – on the abridged version, with alternate lyrics) will caress you like the loving mother’s arms so missed by its protagonist, until “Bully” takes that same theme to its most aggressive and agonized plane. Only Transatlantic could give a theme such varied treatment.

The band clearly made a conscious decision to feature all four members on lead vocals. A policy like this can go awry if not managed carefully, but these virtuosos know exactly what they are doing, and the policy generally gets more thumbs up than thumbs down. If a little forced at times, the ‘four lead vocalists approach’ certainly yields the result of keeping the listener’s attention. I grew to love it.

Lead vocal debate notwithstanding, when these four voices combine in harmony, there can be no argument. In “Rainbow Sky,” for example, The Beatles meet Queen and Jellyfish, and your Pop proclivities will be satiated to the full. There are hand-claps, heavenly harmonies and expansive Queen instrumentals (with Morse’s trademark keyboards) before things get heavy with “Looking for the Light.” In the latter song, Portnoy steps up to give one of the best vocal performances of his career – just perfect.

Portnoy is never afraid to reveal his inner Keith Moon and he does so on “The World We Used To Know.” Reminiscent of The Who, it starts off as a glorious instrumental that contains everything you have come to expect from Transatlantic at their strident best. After Portnoy’s Moon antics, Stolt’s dominant vocal and guitar introduce a more melancholy aspect that is no less pleasing, after which Morse takes it home with a huge climax. “The World We Used to Know” is a full epic extravaganza that ends CD1 on the highest possible note. Expect to have your soul uplifted as the song fades into silence. Of note: you won’t find “Rainbow Sky”, “Bully”, and “The World We Used To Know” on ‘The Breath of Life.’

A capella Beatles harmonies open CD2 with “The Sun Comes Up Today,” which may as well have been entitled “Overture 2,” Featuring the Remarkable Guitar of Roine Stolt’. Trewavas’ vocal provides a nice variation in the up-tempo section, and the ‘Higher than the Morning’ theme is revisited with a more deliberate focus.

“Love Made a Way (Prelude)” is a beautiful precursor of what is to follow in the climactic end-song of the same name. “Owl Howl,” on the other hand, very clearly and intentionally channels the band’s love for King Crimson. Stolt’s voice sounds particularly ominous here, and from minimalist Bruford-type percussion to the driving guitar line, a lurking, crimson musical ghost drives this song. Robert Fripp would be proud.

Ballad “Solitude” has an excellent, plaintive melody which provides the perfect prelude to Morse’s gripping return to the ‘Love Made a Way’ refrain, and Stolt’s magnificent guitar solo.

“Belong” starts with what sounds like a Church organ in space with a crowd of alien children in attendance. A cosmic tribal nursery school? Perhaps. The already-familiar ‘Belong’ refrain is presented in full, and Stolt’s unique guitar is again the catalyst around which the theme is anchored. Soon it becomes ‘See the Millions Waiting for the Sun’. The Transatlantic interstellar voyagers reach further into the Cosmos than ever before, and the silence of the Universe is brought to life with The Absolute music.

“Lonesome Rebel” features Stolte’s distinctive voice over a wistful melody. Describing a lonely man in a crowd, telescopes and a world in distress, the song shows that the isolated nature of mankind was on Stolt’s mind well before he wrote the last Flower Kings album. The song builds around him with various production mysteries (you will silently wonder whether there is a real mandolin playing the core theme) before the power returns in the next song.

“Looking For the Light” brings the Prog back to full flight, with the band striding like an army of titans. Portnoy is particularly powerful on this one, with drum fills that seem to last an age and an odd-time break as good as any in Prog. Trewavas’ bass-lines sound like the thunder of a cosmic rocket ship taking off. Complex, powerful and intense, this is the Transatlantic we so quickly grew to love back in the days of SMPTe.

There is a Sgt Pepper vibe to “The Greatest Story Never Ends,” in which the various themes are revisited in a full-forced, frenzied delivery, culminating in a perfect Gentle Giant-type vocal rendition of the ‘Belong’ motif.

Then, of course, the long, slow climactic finale arrives. “Love Made a Way” fully capitalizes on the ‘spiritual relationship’ that this album has with The Whirlwind. It is the yearned-for, riveting climax, and it will render you dumbfounded that yet another ‘big’ epic ending could have been made by this band without repeating themselves. Dumbfounded or not, you will be standing up and waving your hands in the air. One can just imagine Morse on his knees behind the keyboard with tears flowing down his cheeks when this one is performed live. A peerless epic ending, it will leave you mute with wonder.

And so the album closes, with the distant sound of tympani and keyboards fading into the ether, just like the disappearing spaceship. This, dear reader, is why we love Prog. If you ever needed reminding as to why you have been so dedicated to the genre, why you have spent so much money, put up with the derision of followers of more straightforward music, expended so much time and effort… If you ever needed reminding why you did it, this album will remind you.

It is an enormous amount to digest, but personally, I could not get enough of either version. There is a palpable spirit of joy in the album and one can hear the excitement in the performances. Rich Mouser’s production is, as always, breathtaking in its detail. (If this album is ever toured, it will be a great revelation to see exactly what – and how – the band delivers this content in live shows.)

The Absolute Universe will rightly cause a collective intake of breath in the Prog community. But again, some things are best left unsaid and for the listener to experience. The four members of Transatlantic have nothing left to prove yet they know no bounds in their ambition, and they keep producing masterworks of different hues. This time the colors include every side of the spectrum and every stripe in the rainbow. And we all know that the best rainbows are too good to describe – you just have to experience them.

The Transatlantic airship has now gone where no craft has ventured before. The Absolute Universe, in its various forms, is huge. It is ambitious, it is vibrant, it is expansive, it is detailed, it is dark and it is bright. It is very satisfying both musically and lyrically and it is, above all, immense. Is it brilliant? Well, some things just go without saying.

Released on Feb 5th, 2021 on InsideOutMusic
Key Tracks: Darkness in the Light, Rainbow Sky, The World We Used To Know, Owl Howl

‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’
Track-listing:
Disc 1:
1. Overture
2. Heart Like A Whirlwind
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Swing High, Swing Low
6. Bully
7. Rainbow Sky
8. Looking For The Light
9. The World We Used To Know

Disc 2:
1. The Sun Comes Up Today
2. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
3. Owl Howl
4. Solitude
5. Belong
6. Lonesome Rebel
7. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
8. The Greatest Story Never Ends
9. Love Made A Way

https://transatlantic.lnk.to/TheAbsoluteUniverse

Neal Morse – Keyboards and Vocals
Roine Stolt – Guitars and Vocals
Mike Portnoy – Drums and Vocals
Pete Trewavas – Bass and Vocals

The post Transatlantic – The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Album Review) appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Transatlantic launch video for ‘Looking For The Light’; 3rd single from ‘The Absolute Universe’

Transatlantic have shared the 3rd single from their fifth studio album ‘The Absolute Universe’, titled “Looking For The Light.”  ‘Looking For The Light’, features on both versions of ‘The Absolute Universe’, which us due out on Feb, 5th, 2021.

 

 

Mike Portnoy comments: “Looking For The Light is one of the heavier tracks on The Absolute Universe. In the tradition of Transatlantic sharing all lead vocals, this track gave me my showcase to deliver the lead vocals as it called for a bit more of an aggressive approach.
This is one of the few tracks that remains primarily the same and appears on both versions of the album. However not content to keep it simple, the version included on the music video is actually a unique version which combines both Looking For The Light and its Reprise from later in the album into one combined version available only here in this video.”

Each album will be available on CD, LP & Digitally. But there will also be what has been called ‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’, which collects both versions together in one lavish package that includes 5LP’s, 3CD’s & a Blu-ray that includes a special mix that combines both versions into a third unique version in 5.1 surround sound with visuals and a behind the scenes documentary. All editions have artwork created by Thomas Ewerhard featuring the airship by Pavel Zhovba.

The full list of formats is below, and you can pre-order now here: https://transatlantic.lnk.to/TheAbsoluteUniverse

‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’
Available as:
Single CD Edition, Gatefold 2LP+CD, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
1. Overture
2. Reaching For The Sky
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Take Now My Soul
6. Looking For The Light
7. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
8. Owl Howl
9. Solitude
10. Belong
11. Can You Feel It
12. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
13. The Greatest Story Never Ends
14. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’
Available as:
2CD Edition, 3LP+2CD Boxset, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
Disc 1:
1. Overture
2. Heart Like A Whirlwind
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Swing High, Swing Low
6. Bully
7. Rainbow Sky
8. Looking For The Light
9. The World We Used To Know

Disc 2:
1. The Sun Comes Up Today
2. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
3. Owl Howl
4. Solitude
5. Belong
6. Lonesome Rebel
7. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
8. The Greatest Story Never Ends
9. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’
Limited Deluxe Clear 5LP+3CD+Blu-Ray Box-set – contained within a foil-finished lift-off box with extended 16-page LP booklet & 60x60cm poster. Includes both versions of the album over 5LP’s and 3CD’s, plus a Blu-Ray with 5.1 mix & documentary.

Blu-Ray Track-listing:

1. Overture (5.1 Surround Mix)
2. Reaching For The Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
3. Higher Than The Morning (5.1 Surround Mix)
4. The Darkness In The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
5. Take Now My Soul (5.1 Surround Mix)
6. Bully (5.1 Surround Mix)
7. Rainbow Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
8. Looking For The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
9. The World We Used To Know (5.1 Surround Mix)
10. The Sun Comes Up Today (5.1 Surround Mix)
11. Love Made A Way (Prelude) (5.1 Surround Mix)
12. Owl Howl (5.1 Surround Mix)
13. Solitude (5.1 Surround Mix)
14. Belong (5.1 Surround Mix)
15. Lonesome Rebel (5.1 Surround Mix)
16. Can You Feel It (5.1 Surround Mix)
17. Looking For The Light (Reprise) (5.1 Surround Mix)
18. The Greatest Story Never Ends (5.1 Surround Mix)
19. Love Made A Way (5.1 Surround Mix)
20. The Making of The Absolute Universe (Documentary)

 

The post Transatlantic launch video for ‘Looking For The Light’; 3rd single from ‘The Absolute Universe’ appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Transatlantic share clip from ‘The Making of The Absolute Universe’ documentary

Transatlantic, the Prog Supergroup of Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy, Roine Stolt & Pete Trewavas are taking things up a level with their 5th studio release ‘The Absolute Universe’. Set for release on February 5th, 2021, ‘The Absolute Universe’ will be released in two versions: ‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’ & ‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’.

Today the group have shared a look at the documentary on the making of the album.  The full video will be available as part of the Blu-ray that comes with the Ultimate Edition and is also available as a stand alone copy at the InsideOut, Radiant Records, and Racket Records stores.

You can watch the clip here:

Each album will be available on CD, LP & Digitally. But there will also be what has been called ‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’, which collects both versions together in one lavish package that includes 5LP’s, 3CD’s & a Blu-ray that includes a special mix that combines both versions into a third unique version in 5.1 surround sound with visuals and a behind the scenes documentary. All editions have artwork created by Thomas Ewerhard featuring the airship by Pavel Zhovba.

The full list of formats is below, and you can pre-order now here: https://transatlantic.lnk.to/TheAbsoluteUniverse

‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’
Available as:
Single CD Edition, Gatefold 2LP+CD, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
1. Overture
2. Reaching For The Sky
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Take Now My Soul
6. Looking For The Light
7. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
8. Owl Howl
9. Solitude
10. Belong
11. Can You Feel It
12. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
13. The Greatest Story Never Ends
14. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’
Available as:
2CD Edition, 3LP+2CD Boxset, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
Disc 1:
1. Overture
2. Heart Like A Whirlwind
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Swing High, Swing Low
6. Bully
7. Rainbow Sky
8. Looking For The Light
9. The World We Used To Know

Disc 2:
1. The Sun Comes Up Today
2. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
3. Owl Howl
4. Solitude
5. Belong
6. Lonesome Rebel
7. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
8. The Greatest Story Never Ends
9. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’
Limited Deluxe Clear 5LP+3CD+Blu-Ray Box-set – contained within a foil-finished lift-off box with extended 16-page LP booklet & 60x60cm poster. Includes both versions of the album over 5LP’s and 3CD’s, plus a Blu-Ray with 5.1 mix & documentary.

Blu-Ray Track-listing:

1. Overture (5.1 Surround Mix)
2. Reaching For The Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
3. Higher Than The Morning (5.1 Surround Mix)
4. The Darkness In The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
5. Take Now My Soul (5.1 Surround Mix)
6. Bully (5.1 Surround Mix)
7. Rainbow Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
8. Looking For The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
9. The World We Used To Know (5.1 Surround Mix)
10. The Sun Comes Up Today (5.1 Surround Mix)
11. Love Made A Way (Prelude) (5.1 Surround Mix)
12. Owl Howl (5.1 Surround Mix)
13. Solitude (5.1 Surround Mix)
14. Belong (5.1 Surround Mix)
15. Lonesome Rebel (5.1 Surround Mix)
16. Can You Feel It (5.1 Surround Mix)
17. Looking For The Light (Reprise) (5.1 Surround Mix)
18. The Greatest Story Never Ends (5.1 Surround Mix)
19. Love Made A Way (5.1 Surround Mix)
20. The Making of The Absolute Universe (Documentary)

 

The post Transatlantic share clip from ‘The Making of The Absolute Universe’ documentary appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Transatlantic launch video for ‘The World We Used To Know’; second single from ‘The Absolute Universe’

Transatlantic, the Prog Supergroup of Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy, Roine Stolt & Pete Trewavas are taking things up a level with their 5th studio release ‘The Absolute Universe’. Set for release on February 5th, 2021, ‘The Absolute Universe’ will be released in two versions: ‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’ & ‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’. While each album will be available on CD, LP & Digitally, there will also be what has been called ‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’, which collects both versions together in one lavish package that includes 5LP’s, 3CD’s & a Blu-ray that includes a special mix that combines both versions into a third unique version in 5.1 surround sound with visuals and a behind the scenes documentary. All editions have artwork created by Thomas Ewerhard featuring the airship by Pavel Zhovba.

Today they have launched the video for ‘The World We Used To Know’, taken from ‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’. Watch it now here:

Mike Portnoy comments: “The 2nd release from the upcoming Transatlantic album ‘The Absolute Universe’ features our Swedish Genie Mr Roine Stolt on lead vocals (in contrast to the 1st release which featured Neal, Pete & I sharing the lead vocals).  

This piece also opens with another extended instrumental intro where I get to utilize my best Keith Moon acrobatics and leads to Roine’s beautiful, melodic vocals on the verses and choruses in the body of the song and climaxes with a majestic section with Neal Morse taking the lead vocal and one of the album’s main musical reoccurring themes.

This portion of the album closes out Disc 1 of the 2 CD version of the album ‘Forevermore’.”

Each album will be available on CD, LP & Digitally. But there will also be what has been called ‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’, which collects both versions together in one lavish package that includes 5LP’s, 3CD’s & a Blu-ray that includes a special mix that combines both versions into a third unique version in 5.1 surround sound with visuals and a behind the scenes documentary. All editions have artwork created by Thomas Ewerhard featuring the airship by Pavel Zhovba.

The full list of formats is below, and you can pre-order now here: https://transatlantic.lnk.to/TheAbsoluteUniverse

‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’
Available as:
Single CD Edition, Gatefold 2LP+CD, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
1. Overture
2. Reaching For The Sky
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Take Now My Soul
6. Looking For The Light
7. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
8. Owl Howl
9. Solitude
10. Belong
11. Can You Feel It
12. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
13. The Greatest Story Never Ends
14. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’
Available as:
2CD Edition, 3LP+2CD Boxset, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
Disc 1:
1. Overture
2. Heart Like A Whirlwind
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Swing High, Swing Low
6. Bully
7. Rainbow Sky
8. Looking For The Light
9. The World We Used To Know

Disc 2:
1. The Sun Comes Up Today
2. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
3. Owl Howl
4. Solitude
5. Belong
6. Lonesome Rebel
7. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
8. The Greatest Story Never Ends
9. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’
Limited Deluxe Clear 5LP+3CD+Blu-Ray Box-set – contained within a foil-finished lift-off box with extended 16-page LP booklet & 60x60cm poster. Includes both versions of the album over 5LP’s and 3CD’s, plus a Blu-Ray with 5.1 mix & documentary.

Blu-Ray Track-listing:

1. Overture (5.1 Surround Mix)
2. Reaching For The Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
3. Higher Than The Morning (5.1 Surround Mix)
4. The Darkness In The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
5. Take Now My Soul (5.1 Surround Mix)
6. Bully (5.1 Surround Mix)
7. Rainbow Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
8. Looking For The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
9. The World We Used To Know (5.1 Surround Mix)
10. The Sun Comes Up Today (5.1 Surround Mix)
11. Love Made A Way (Prelude) (5.1 Surround Mix)
12. Owl Howl (5.1 Surround Mix)
13. Solitude (5.1 Surround Mix)
14. Belong (5.1 Surround Mix)
15. Lonesome Rebel (5.1 Surround Mix)
16. Can You Feel It (5.1 Surround Mix)
17. Looking For The Light (Reprise) (5.1 Surround Mix)
18. The Greatest Story Never Ends (5.1 Surround Mix)
19. Love Made A Way (5.1 Surround Mix)
20. The Making of The Absolute Universe (Documentary)

 

The post Transatlantic launch video for ‘The World We Used To Know’; second single from ‘The Absolute Universe’ appeared first on The Prog Report.

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Transatlantic launch video for “Overture / Reaching For The Sky” from ‘The Absolute Universe’

Transatlantic, the Prog Supergroup of Neal Morse, Mike Portnoy, Roine Stolt & Pete Trewavas are taking things up a level with their 5th studio release ‘The Absolute Universe’. Set for release on February 5th, 2021, ‘The Absolute Universe’ will be released in two versions: ‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’ & ‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’. While each album will be available on CD, LP & Digitally, there will also be what has been called ‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’, which collects both versions together in one lavish package that includes 5LP’s, 3CD’s & a Blu-ray that includes a special mix that combines both versions into a third unique version in 5.1 surround sound with visuals and a behind the scenes documentary. All editions have artwork created by Thomas Ewerhard featuring the airship by Pavel Zhovba.

Today they have launched the video for ‘Overture / Reaching For The Sky’, taken from ‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’ which you can see here:

Mike Portnoy comments: “’Reaching For The Sky’ is the first single off Transatlantic’s latest Magnum opus ‘The Absolute Universe’. It’s a great introduction to this epic album as it sets the tone in traditional TA style: proceeded on the album by an extended Instrumental Overture and then launching into this upbeat first song.

I love that it features one of my favorite qualities of the band in the sharing of the lead vocals…in this case: Neal singing lead on Verse 1, myself singing lead on Verse 2, Pete & Neal sharing the Chorus with myself and Roine on backups and Neal taking the glorious Bridge…all leading to Roine’s distinctive guitar solo.

Also interesting is that this version exclusively appears on the Abridged 1CD Version of TA5 (“The Breath Of Life”) while the Extended 2CD Version of TA5 (“Forevermore”) opens with the alternate version ‘Heart Like A Whirlwind’ which has different lead vocals and lyrics.”

As Mike Portnoy explains: “We’ve got two versions of this album. There is a two CD presentation, which is 90 minutes long, and a single one – that’s 60 minutes. However, the single CD is NOT merely an edited version of the double CD. They each contain alternate versions and even in some cases, new recordings. We wrote fresh lyrics and have different people singing on the single CD version tracks as compared to those on the double CD. Some of the song titles have also been changed, while others might remain the same, but compositionally what you’ll hear has been altered. You must appreciate that what we have done is unique. We revamped the songs to make the two versions different.” Pete Trewavas adds: “We did write some new music for the single CD, what’s more, there are also differences in the instruments used on some of the tracks across the two records.”

The full list of formats is below, and you can pre-order now here: https://transatlantic.lnk.to/TheAbsoluteUniverse

‘The Absolute Universe: The Breath Of Life (Abridged Version)’
Available as:
Single CD Edition, Gatefold 2LP+CD, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
1. Overture
2. Reaching For The Sky
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Take Now My Soul
6. Looking For The Light
7. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
8. Owl Howl
9. Solitude
10. Belong
11. Can You Feel It
12. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
13. The Greatest Story Never Ends
14. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: Forevermore (Extended Version)’
Available as:
2CD Edition, 3LP+2CD Boxset, or Digital Album

Track-listing:
Disc 1:
1. Overture
2. Heart Like A Whirlwind
3. Higher Than The Morning
4. The Darkness In The Light
5. Swing High, Swing Low
6. Bully
7. Rainbow Sky
8. Looking For The Light
9. The World We Used To Know

Disc 2:
1. The Sun Comes Up Today
2. Love Made A Way (Prelude)
3. Owl Howl
4. Solitude
5. Belong
6. Lonesome Rebel
7. Looking For The Light (Reprise)
8. The Greatest Story Never Ends
9. Love Made A Way

‘The Absolute Universe: The Ultimate Edition’
Limited Deluxe Clear 5LP+3CD+Blu-Ray Box-set – contained within a foil-finished lift-off box with extended 16-page LP booklet & 60x60cm poster. Includes both versions of the album over 5LP’s and 3CD’s, plus a Blu-Ray with 5.1 mix & documentary.

Blu-Ray Track-listing:

1. Overture (5.1 Surround Mix)
2. Reaching For The Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
3. Higher Than The Morning (5.1 Surround Mix)
4. The Darkness In The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
5. Take Now My Soul (5.1 Surround Mix)
6. Bully (5.1 Surround Mix)
7. Rainbow Sky (5.1 Surround Mix)
8. Looking For The Light (5.1 Surround Mix)
9. The World We Used To Know (5.1 Surround Mix)
10. The Sun Comes Up Today (5.1 Surround Mix)
11. Love Made A Way (Prelude) (5.1 Surround Mix)
12. Owl Howl (5.1 Surround Mix)
13. Solitude (5.1 Surround Mix)
14. Belong (5.1 Surround Mix)
15. Lonesome Rebel (5.1 Surround Mix)
16. Can You Feel It (5.1 Surround Mix)
17. Looking For The Light (Reprise) (5.1 Surround Mix)
18. The Greatest Story Never Ends (5.1 Surround Mix)
19. Love Made A Way (5.1 Surround Mix)
20. The Making of The Absolute Universe (Documentary)

Initial tracking began in September 2019 when the band met up in Sweden to write and arrange the new material. As Portnoy explains: “Over a period of 10-14 days, we mapped out the songs. Then we all went back to our home studios and did the recording. That’s the way we always do it. At one point, though, it was suggested that instead of doing what was by that time going to be a double album, we should just be content to do a single CD.”
“What happened was that everything kept expanding and expanding,” recalls Stolt. “Therefore we decided it made sense to make it a double album. It was Pete and Neal who then came out and said they felt this would be too long, and we should reduce it to one…But we were already recording, and it didn’t seem feasible to cut it back. There were so many pieces that each of us loved in what we were planning and didn’t want to lose. That’s when we ended up in discussions over the best way forward.”

This album also marks a return to the concept album for Transatlantic. “Well, the idea of Transatlantic deciding to do a concept record this time around won’t shock anyone, right?” laughs Portnoy. “What we have is essentially one giant composition, split into chapters. The storyline is about the struggles facing everyone in society today.” “We didn’t start out with the idea of this being conceptual,” admits Stolt. “The way things work with us is that we have a load of ideas, and these are developed spontaneously when we meet up. Everything happens in the moment.”

So, how does this new ground-breaking album compare to Transatlantic’s previous four albums?
“I always try not to compare albums as much as possible,” insists Morse. “It’s very difficult when you’re trying to be creative, because your natural instinct is to constantly compare. But in order to create you have to kind of step away from that. Having said that, I would say this would have more in common with ‘The Whirlwind’ album (the band’s third, from 2009) than others that we’ve created.”

For Trewavas, ‘The Absolute Universe’ is a momentous project.“I think it is right up there with the very finest albums we’ve done. As the others have said, it compares very well to ‘The Whirlwind’, which I believe represents Transatlantic at our best. As on that album, we took our time to write and arrange everything, and that shines through. I am very excited for people to hear it.”

Transatlantic were originally formed in 1999, releasing their debut album ‘SMTPe’ the following year as well as its follow-up ‘Bridge Across Forever’ in 2001. Following a 7-year hiatus, the band reconvened to record and release the much-acclaimed epic 77-minute, single-track album ‘The Whirlwind’ followed by a world tour in 2010 which included an appearance at High Voltage Festival in London where they were joined by legendary Genesis guitarist Steve Hackett. The band’s fourth album ‘Kaleidoscope’ arrived in 2014, going on to win ‘Album Of The Year’ at the Progressive Music Awards.

The post Transatlantic launch video for “Overture / Reaching For The Sky” from ‘The Absolute Universe’ appeared first on The Prog Report.

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