DREAM THEATER’s JAMES LABRIE Says MIKE PORTNOY Is In Cost Of Tour Setlists Once more: ‘He is Finished A Terrific Job’

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In a brand new interview with Brazilian music journalist Igor Miranda, DREAM THEATER singer James LaBrie spoke concerning the progressive music titans’ upcoming “Fortieth Anniversary Tour 2024 – 2025”. The trek — introduced as “An Night With Dream Theater” — is the primary outing since drummer Mike Portnoy‘s return to the band final October. The European leg of DREAM THEATER‘s “Fortieth Anniversary Tour 2024 – 2025” consists of stops in 23 cities and kicks off on October 20 and runs via November 24. Requested if there was any dialogue concerning the setlist for the upcoming tour, James stated (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): “Properly, completely. And simply so you already know, we let Mike Portnoy take over the setlist once more. So he is again to creating the setlist and he is doing, like we have been nearly optimistic he would, he is executed a terrific job. I imply, the setlist he put collectively… And the factor is with Mike, he was saying, ‘Hey, guys, if there is a track you do not wanna do, let me know. If there’s songs that you just actually wanna do, let me know.’ And so there’s some very sturdy and funky communication happening. However yeah, he is glad to be placing the setlist collectively.”

LaBrie continued: “I can not reveal what the setlist shall be, however I can inform you that it is wonderful. And I can not think about any fan strolling out of the venue and going, ‘Oh, shit, man, I wished them to play this’ or ‘I wished them to play that.’ This setlist actually touches on so many grandiose moments within the band, so it is actually like a power-punch setlist, and it is actually gonna be thrilling to see the followers after which to start out listening to the conversations as soon as we’re truly enjoying it dwell. However now we’re stoked. It is gonna be an important, nice night, wonderful manufacturing. And, yeah, it is gonna be superior.”

Concerning how the reunion with Portnoy happened, LaBrie stated: “Properly, it was one thing that was slowly… We may type of see the indicators in a means, though on the time, you are probably not paying a lot consideration to it. However now we will type of mirror again and go, ‘Yeah, I suppose that opened a door of possibly some dialogue that will result in the following factor.’ Being like, if Mike acquired along with [DREAM THEATER guitarist] John Petrucci and [DREAM THEATER keyboardist] Jordan [Rudess] and did an LTE [LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT] album. I imply, that is one factor that opened one door there. After which Mike acquired along with John Petrucci and did [Petrucci‘s] final solo album. After which he did his first solo tour. So this type of begins occurring. Then Mike and I made amends a number of years in the past when DREAM THEATER was enjoying in New York on the Beacon Theater, after which Mike got here out. And it was the primary time that him and I had seen one another in — holy shit — in all probability 12 years at the moment, at that time. In order that was one other factor that type of led to…

“I believe means at the back of our head, on the time have been we pondering, ‘Oh, yeah, it is inevitable. We’re gonna get again collectively and put the unique lineup again collectively’? I do not assume any of us have been pondering that, however I believe there’s in all probability all the time just a little iota of that sense that it may probably occur,” James added. “And I believe with us, one factor simply saved resulting in the opposite, and ultimately, once we have been executed [with] the final world tour, we type of… ‘A View From The High Of The World’, once we completed that [tour in support of that album] and wrapped it up [in] July of ’23, we type of knew at that time that we simply wished to type of mirror on the whole lot and take a studying of the place we have been in our profession. what was it that we wished to realize. After which the entire Mike Portnoy factor type of began to change into extra a actuality, the place it was simply type of, like, ‘Hey, you already know what, guys? We’re at this level in our life and profession, if we’re gonna do one thing like this, possibly now could be the time that we must be contemplating.’ However like I stated, it was a number of issues that simply began to materialize, little issues that grew into just a little bit greater issues. And it simply type of evolves from there and it mushrooms into what was simple to us sooner or later in time the place we went, ‘Hey, let’s do that. This makes good sense.’ And no diss to… [Now-former DREAM THEATER drummer] Mike Mangini‘s an incredible, unimaginable fricking musician, drummer, and the albums he did with us we’re all extraordinarily happy with; they’re nice albums. However now right here we’re on this chapter, again with the unique drummer and our Fortieth-anniversary world tour arising. So it is big. It is gonna be large. It is gonna be large.”

LaBrie additionally talked concerning the progress of the recording periods for DREAM THEATER‘s sixteenth studio album. The upcoming effort will mark the progressive steel legends’ first LP with Portnoy in 15 years. James stated: “Proper now, keyboards are being recorded, as you and I converse. So, yeah, it is principally, report keyboards after which vocals. After which it needs to be combined and mastered and all that stuff. After which, clearly, the art work and the whole lot that goes together with any given new album, that additionally needs to be put into the works, and it is being mentioned and so forth and so forth. So, yeah, there’s rather a lot happening, and like all given album once you report it, there is a course of. And, yeah, it is shifting alongside and it is coming alongside amazingly. So, we’re fairly stoked.”

As for the musical path of the brand new DREAM THEATER materials, James stated: ” what? I would love to save lots of that for once we begin interviewing for the brand new album. I will simply inform you this: I will say, fairly merely, we could not be happier with the place it’s as a result of it is the album that we wished to put in writing. It is the album that we wished to create, and we nailed it. It is the whole lot that we wished to realize and extra. So, what can I inform you? We’re ecstatic. We’re so, so pleased about it. And that is actually the very best place to be. Whenever you’re creating one thing like a reunion album, you need it to be completely unimaginable. So we’re stoked. Completely.”

Portnoy co-founded DREAM THEATER in 1985 with guitarist John Petrucci and bassist John Myung. Mike performed on 10 DREAM THEATER albums over a 20-year interval, from 1989’s “When Dream And Day Unite” via 2009’s “Black Clouds & Silver Linings”, earlier than exiting the group in 2010.

Mike Mangini joined DREAM THEATER in late 2010 via a extensively publicized audition following the departure of Portnoy. Mangini beat out six different of the world’s high drummers — Marco Minnemann, Virgil Donati, Aquiles Priester, Thomas Lang, Peter Wildoer and Derek Roddy — for the gig, a three-day course of that was filmed for a documentary-style actuality present referred to as “The Spirit Carries On”.

In April, Portnoy was requested by Rolling Stone journal if he was stunned when he was invited again into the band. He stated: “Earlier than the Covid pandemic, when you had requested me or any of those guys, ‘Was a reunion within the playing cards?’ I in all probability would’ve stated I doubted that it may occur. I believe if the lockdown hadn’t occurred, you guys in all probability would’ve been on tour, and I might’ve been on tour with one in every of my 48 bands. However as soon as we have been all locked down, John requested me to play on his solo album. Then, from there, Jordan, John, and myself did the LIQUID TENSION EXPERIMENT album. After which I did John‘s tour. So there have been simply these collection of occasions of reconnecting us — not solely on a musical degree but in addition on a private degree for a few years previous to that.

“All of our households are mates,” he continued. “And my daughter and John‘s daughter shared an condo collectively for a lot of, a few years. And John Myung lives proper down the block from me, and his spouse’s at my home each evening. There was only a collection of occasions each personally and musically that began to really feel like, ‘Properly, possibly this actually is within the playing cards. Possibly that is the appropriate time.'”

Requested in the event that they see this reunion as therapeutic a fractured band, Portnoy stated: “I do not wish to be over-philosophical about it, however as we’re all getting older. Right here we’re in our 50s and 60s. You begin to think about the fact of, ‘How a lot time do now we have left?’ I might hate it if this have been to change into a Roger WatersPINK FLOYD or Peter Gabriel-with-GENESIS state of affairs the place the followers need it, however it by no means occurs.”

Petrucci added: “When Mike left the band, it was traumatic for all of us. We had to determine how we have been going to maneuver our profession ahead. And people years that glided by, they have been additionally therapeutic years since you do not simply have one thing like that occur, and hastily, you are all finest buddies every week later. There’s some trauma there that needed to heal. 13 years was sufficient time for that to occur and be, like, ‘Hey, you already know what, man? We love one another like we’re brothers.'”


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