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NEAL MORSE

Symphonic Prog • United States


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Neal Morse picture
Neal Morse biography
Born August 2, 1960 in Van Nuys, California, USA

As a young musician, Neal's dream was like many others-to find success in the pop music world. But after years of struggling in the LA singer-songwriter scene, he realized that his dream would not materialize. Eschewing conventional wisdom, Neal took a courageous step: he about-faced and devoted himself to progressive rock, the music truly in his heart. The obscure and fiercely competitive genre held little chance of commercial success. Undaunted, he formed the quirkily-named SPOCK'S BEARD with his brother, Alan. They recorded The Light with what money they could scrape together. Against all odds, it was a breakout success, sending shockwaves through the small genre's community.

Over the next 10 years, Spock's Beard released 10 critically acclaimed CDs and 2 concert DVDs, ascending to the top of the "prog" world. Neal also released 6 CDs and 3 DVDs with Transatlantic, the heralded prog "supergroup" comprised of the world's finest prog musicians. The proverbial wayward son, Neal had finally found the success he dreamed of. But something was missing. While on the outside Neal had it all; on the inside, something was missing. Morse came to realize that for him, embracing the Christian faith was the fulfillment of his spiritual quest. His walk was at once gradual and sudden-and like with so many, completely unexpected. As he continued, his path increasingly revealed more of what his heart had sought all along. Yet he also began to find his career growing at odds with his faith. The rising spiritual tension and increasing commercial success finally came to a head with the release of Snow (2002), Spock's Beard's (with Morse) magnum opus.and swan song.

The extraordinary 2-CD rock opera, composed by Morse, was widely acclaimed as the group's finest. But it was the end of the era: Neal made the agonizing decision to leave Spock's Beard. After also leaving Transatlantic, the transformation was complete. Despite having finally achieved the success he had long sought, Morse began all over again; musically, emotionally and spiritually. Neal then embarked upon the most ambitious musical project of his career. Entitled Testimony (2003), it chronicles his spiritual and musical journey in words and music. The 2 CD set (3 CDs for the Special Edition) spans over two hours as one continuous piece of music. ...
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The Grand ExperimentThe Grand Experiment
Metal Blade 2015
Audio CD$12.66
$12.65 (used)
Sola ScripturaSola Scriptura
Import
Imports 2010
Audio CD$10.65
$10.64 (used)
TestimonyTestimony
Metal Blade 2017
Vinyl$22.87
$17.59 (used)
Morsefest 2015 Sola Scriptural and ? LiveMorsefest 2015 Sola Scriptural and ? Live
Metal Blade 2017
Audio CD$27.95
MomentumMomentum
Metal Blade 2012
Audio CD$13.97
$8.98 (used)
Alive Again [Blu-ray]Alive Again [Blu-ray]
Metal Blade 2016
Blu-ray$15.40
$15.39 (used)
Alive AgainAlive Again
Metal Blade 2016
Audio CD$17.09
$17.99 (used)
OneOne
Metal Blade 2004
Audio CD$7.98
$4.02 (used)
LifelineLifeline
Metal Blade 2008
Audio CD$11.01
$9.00 (used)
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THE SIMILITUDE OF A DREAM by THE NEAL MORSE BAND (2CD/DVD, 2016) Dream Theater USD $9.99 [0 bids]
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NEAL MORSE discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

NEAL MORSE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.23 | 114 ratings
Neal Morse
1999
2.78 | 87 ratings
It's Not Too Late
2001
4.05 | 425 ratings
Testimony
2003
4.11 | 448 ratings
One
2004
4.20 | 586 ratings
? [Aka: Question Mark]
2005
2.99 | 53 ratings
God Won't Give Up
2005
2.32 | 41 ratings
Lead Me Lord - Worship Sessions Volume 1
2005
2.89 | 44 ratings
Send The Fire - Worship Sessions Volume 2
2006
2.94 | 73 ratings
Morse, Portnoy & George: Cover To Cover
2006
2.55 | 42 ratings
Songs From The Highway
2007
4.18 | 588 ratings
Sola Scriptura
2007
2.72 | 32 ratings
Secret Place - Worship Sessions Volume 3
2008
3.12 | 274 ratings
Lifeline
2008
2.74 | 35 ratings
The River - Worship Sessions Volume 4
2009
2.62 | 29 ratings
Mighty To Save - Worship Sessions Volume 5
2010
4.01 | 555 ratings
Testimony 2
2011
3.98 | 415 ratings
Momentum
2012
3.00 | 45 ratings
Morse, Portnoy & George: Cover 2 Cover
2012
2.96 | 66 ratings
Songs From November
2014
3.78 | 271 ratings
The Neal Morse Band: The Grand Experiment
2015
4.06 | 363 ratings
The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
2016
2.59 | 17 ratings
To God Be The Glory
2016

NEAL MORSE Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.18 | 11 ratings
Nick 'n Neal - Two Separate Gorillas - Live In Europe - The From The Vaults Series Volume 2
2000
3.79 | 56 ratings
? Live
2007
4.44 | 80 ratings
So many Roads
2009
4.45 | 74 ratings
Testimony Two - Live In Los Angeles
2011

NEAL MORSE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.47 | 82 ratings
Testimony Live
2004
4.34 | 84 ratings
Sola Scriptura and Beyond
2008
4.48 | 49 ratings
Live Momentum
2013
3.62 | 26 ratings
Morsefest! 2014: Testimony & One Live
2015
3.97 | 26 ratings
Alive Again (as The Neal Morse Band)
2016
3.38 | 10 ratings
Morsefest 2015
2017

NEAL MORSE Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.74 | 29 ratings
The Transatlantic Demos
2003
2.00 | 6 ratings
Sing It High
2007
3.71 | 10 ratings
One Demos
2007
3.30 | 21 ratings
A Proggy Christmas - The Prog World Orchestra
2012
3.00 | 2 ratings
The Grand Experiment Demos (Inner Circle March 2016)
2016

NEAL MORSE Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

2.08 | 21 ratings
Merry Christmas From The Morse Family
2000
2.82 | 17 ratings
A Proggy Christmas
2011

NEAL MORSE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.06 | 363 ratings

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The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by Amilisom

4 stars In the months leading up to the release of "The Similitude of a Dream" it was clear in all the promotional material that Neal was particularly excited about this one. In more than once instance his drummer, Mike Portnoy, was even quoted in saying it was the album of his career. Since its release Neal even said on his Facebook page that it was his favorite album of his.

It's worth noting that "The Similitude" marks as the second album with the new lineup aptly named "The Neal Morse Band." Up until 2015, Neal Morse's solo albums mainly consisted of him, his drummer Portnoy, bassist Randy George, and a host of guest musicians who show up occasionally throughout the music. But with the release of 2015's "The Grand Experiment," Neal brought into the band two full-time musicians: Eric Gillette on guitar, and Bill Hubauer on keys. Both of which are also excellent vocalists. With the release of "The Grand Experiment" it was clear that Gillette and Hubauer had contributed somewhat to the songwriting style, giving the album a different flavor than the preceding Neal Morse albums. With this in mind, I looked forward to hearing another installment of this new flavor.

So how do I feel about it? It's pretty much the best album Neal has made since "Solo Scriptura," but I wouldn't say that it's better. The sharp, dramatic quality that holds together the excellence of his earlier concept albums like "Testimony" or "One" has been somewhat dulled here. Having said that, it was refreshing to hear another concept album that covers deep, theological ground, and "Similitude" does that in a very interesting way: writing the songs on themes from the 1678 book "Pilgrim's Progress."

So how's the music itself? Every time I listen through it I feel like I can hear the joy of everyone in the band. It just sounds like they had a blast recording this album. I was glad to see that Gillette and Hubauer have moments singing lead vocals. Even Portnoy sings on one track. The diverse character of each vocalist allows for them to fit different characters in different scenes, such as when Neal is playing the part of the sloth in "Sloth," urging the main character to sleep ("Why do you work so hard?"), and Gillette gloriously enters as the main character with lyrics climaxing on the line "I can't sleep or slumber or I could get lost here." There's also a very catchy track near the end of disc one with a possible Beatles influence, "The Ways of a Fool," which also has some excellent vocal tradeoffs as well as harmonizations that seem reminiscent of the Beach Boys. "Breath of Angels" has a gospel touch to it, "The Man In the Iron Cage" is built around a hard, bluesy guitar riff, and "Freedom Song" has more of a country/folk flair to it. Needless to say, the album diversely covers many of the styles seen on previous Neal Morse albums.

Would I recommend this album? Of course. Is it the best Neal Morse album? I wouldn't put it in my top three favorites. Overall I give it four stars, but it may be deserving of four and a half.

 The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.06 | 363 ratings

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The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by M27Barney

1 stars Well, where do I start? Neal Morse - says - "I want to preach about my born-again xtian god-delusion, again". "H'm haven't you done that to death already?" says a.n. other - "I'll tell you what - I will base the concept on a well known xtian allegorical tale - Bunyan's The Pilgrims Progress!". "I wouldn't call it that - it won't sell - give it a proggy name". "Good idea" muses Morse, "I'll call it 'The similitude of a dream' - How's that?" "OK"...... Well , I listened to CD1 and the lyrics didn't twist my melon until - "Breath of Angels" - I had to turn it off immediately! I gave it a second chance - and got as far as CD2 - before his preaching got to me again. The musicianship is awesome , the prog music equally the best around at the moment. - Oy! Morse why didn't you include an edition with an instrumental CD for me to enjoy? I will re-capitulate and go-over my review - in terms of it's musical content - and Like I said - Had the CD come with an instrumental version - the instrumental Cd would receive a the maximum score - like I said the musical content and musicianship CANNOT be bettered by any prog act at the moment! The religious context of the CD would be acceptable - if it was applied in a yes-like vague spiritual haze of strange lyrics - like Tales from Topographic oceans - a prog epic about the teachings of an eastern religious guru. But the lyrics are appalling and cloyingly preachy (Again). If Mr Morse had a sense of fun / history - perhaps he could produce a CD about a gang of U.S. youths and call it "The battle of Gettysburg" or something similar - or an epic about the White-Europeans land-grab and their massacre of the earlier Indian cultures! BUT..... I'm afraid his narration, is of a man, - sick of earthly delights - realises that real life only happens when you're dead but has no actual proof that this is the case - just his smug - I KNOW!!! YOU FOOLS! attitude. Well he would have got more interest from me - if he has told a tale about a similarly deluded pilgrim, wandering about Manchester with a bomb in his back-pack for 2.5 hours before taking 22 men, women and children with him into oblivion because "HE KNOWS" that he will get 36 virgins in his city in the sky. Neal - give it a rest!
 Morsefest 2015 by MORSE, NEAL album cover DVD/Video, 2017
3.38 | 10 ratings

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Morsefest 2015
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by rdtprog
Special Collaborator Prog Metal / Heavy Prog Team

3 stars Here another live release of Neal Morse or I can say more of "Morsefest" only after a few months the band decided to do another show in the same church that for the DVD Morsefest 2014. This is more than 5 hours of music with 2 complete albums that are played: "Question Mark" and "Sola Scriptura". Those songs have been played before in previous tours and also on the 2008's DVD. So that's where I had troubled with. Those two albums have been released for so long that I did lose the excitement of fresh material. "Question Mark" is a very good album but I didn't have the same fun to watched it here. I did enjoy the 2 songs "The Call" and The Grand Experiment" from the first Neal Morse band album and the cover "MacArthur Park", but I didn't like "New Jerusalem" and the acoustic "Waterfall". Neal did for the first time an epic song of 25 minutes from his first solo album "A Wole New Trip" which is again not his best song.

In the first set, I thought I was having a nightmare when I saw the priest made an appearance in the middle of a song to give his religious speech pitch. I don't think this intrusion belongs in a music concert. But knowing Neal, I knew this was his kind of thing that didn't bother him and was in fact prepared. During the show, there was also some dancing, I didn't think again that this animation was adding something to the show.

In the second set, I jump up off my chair for the first time when I saw Nick D'Vigilio behind the drum set playing one of the best song of Spock's Beard "At The End of the Day". They did another song from Spock's Beard "Wind at my Back" before closing things with a medley of Transatlantic "Whirlwind" album. As for the picture quality and sound, it seems that with each DVD, those things improve as the light show. The 1-hour documentary is very professional and done with some real technician, and also with some good interviews and good stories. The next Morsefest recording is already scheduled and will feature the latest Neal Morse Band album which I will definitely enjoy more than this one.

 The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.06 | 363 ratings

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The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by Corcoranw687

5 stars 5 stars no question about it. I hadn't heard much of Neal Morse's music before, aside from a song called "The Light" and a few live videos of Transatlantic performing with Daniel Gildenlow, but after reading some very complimentary reviews(the most complimentary of which was found on Mike Portnoy' s blog) I decided to buy the album, and I haven't stopped recommending this to everybody I know. My first thoughts upon listening were that I found this much easier to listen to as a whole compared to other double disc concept albums. Other than feeling the need to play just "Ways of a Fool" which is certainly the catchiest and strongest track, I play this whole thing start to finish each time I listen without ever feeling like it drags. This was one of the last albums I bought in 2016 but it is almost certainly my favourite. The musicians are skilled enough to really show off, but they never feel like they are overdoing it, but the real surprise for me here were the vocals from all four musicians, simply incredible. I can't recommend this enough
 God Won't Give Up by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2005
2.99 | 53 ratings

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God Won't Give Up
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by martindavey87

3 stars As if the name of the album wasn't a big enough clue, I had no idea what I was purchasing when I picked this CD up, instead, I was more bewildered at the fact that I was finding this in a charity shop for £2, amongst all the charity shop regulars such as Phil Collins, Finley Quaye and Barry Mannilow.

So I get home, pop the CD in the player eagerly awaiting some prog epic akin to Spock's Beard or Transatlantic, and instead, I get pianos and organs and gospel choirs singing about "His mercy endureth-ing". The album is aptly titled "God Won't Give Up" for a reason.

But hey, never mind! I'm a big Neal Morse fan and I'll listen to anything, so let's give it a spin, or two... or three... or, hold on... I'm starting to like this!!!

The problem with music like this, as evidenced by my own initial attitude, is peoples ignorance and general intolerance of it. People can be too quick to judge based simply on the premise that they don't need anyone preaching to them. And that's where they're wrong. Morse isn't preaching to anyone. He isn't trying to persuade us to go to church. Or read the bible. Or pray every night before going to bed. He's merely singing about his own love of God. And to tell the truth... views on religion aside, the music itself is so damn catchy and uplifting that it's hard not to enjoy it. Regardless of lyrical themes.

This is far from the prog greatness you'd expect from a man who fronted one of the genres most beloved cult bands, but it's still a record worth checking out. Morse's voice is always a pleasure to listen to, and with some hidden gems on it such as 'King of Love', 'Love Like You' and 'Sing My Love' (you can really feel the love on this album eh?) it'd be a shame to dismiss some great songwriting due to nothing more than prejudice.

Unless you're a death metal enthusiast. You probably won't enjoy this.

'God Won't Give Up' is far from the type of album I'd rant and rave about, and there's countless other things I'd rather listen to than any kind of Christian music, but with that said, it's definitely been an eye opener for me, not to judge anything without having heard it myself, and that sometimes the most enjoyable music can come from the most unlikeliest sources.

Now then... Cannibal Corpse, anyone?

 The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.06 | 363 ratings

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The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by The Jester

4 stars Starting this piece, I should first of all mention that I'm not a fan of Neil Morse. I surely respect him as a composer and musician, I have many of his solo albums, and of his projects as well, but still? The Similitude of a Dream is the new work of The Neal Morse band, in which many very good musicians are participating, and Mike Portnoy is one of them. The album is available as a double CD, with a total length of almost 105 minutes. It includes 23 tracks, and none of them is more than 10 minutes in length; so no epic this time. The longest song here is the album's closing piece, the very beautiful Broken Sky / Long Day (Reprise), which is almost 10 minutes long, and one of my most beloved songs. I am not going to write about each song separately, first of all because the songs are many, but further than that because I usually put the CD to play and I listen to it as a whole work, not song by song. But despite that, there are some songs I like very much, like the song I mentioned above, (Broken sky/Long Day), City of Destruction, Back to the City and The Ways of a Fool, to name a few. The album is filled with very beautiful melodies (which is my soft spot), many interesting turns, and of course excellent musicianship, not to mention Neil Morse's singing abilities that are adding a lot to the album. The Similitude of a Dream is not an easy album, it needs some time in order to appreciate it. But once you do, it will satisfy you without any doubt. Recommended! I will give 4 stars, but I'm not sure if it is enough to be honest.

 The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.06 | 363 ratings

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The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by chiang

5 stars Neil Morse knows how to make music. This is IMO the best album he has made (and the best made on 2016). He writes strong melodies. He knows how to create a "conceptual album", by using intelligent transitions, combining themes and returning repeatedly to many of them. He choose great musicians to play with too. Each musician on this album is a great one and masters his own instrument. In a very "Pink Floyd's style, he chooses the right sonority for each album's moment. Four of the musicians take leather voice in different moments of this album. Like Ian Anderson on his current albums , he knows when he needs another voice to reach some high notes. Mike Portnoy doesn't need a justification to be here. Randy George is a fantastic bass player. Bill Hubauer sounds great on keyboards and on voice. And Eric Gillette combines a great voice (singing with great skill most of high voice parts) and guitar skills that reminds Petrucci a great choice to play with. Saxes, trumpets, violin and a trio of female singers complete this wonderful team. Singing and instrumental parts combination is well done. There are not long instrumental solos, neither are there hard to listen and overloaded lyric pieces. Some tunes ("So far gone", "Broken sky", "Slave to your mind"), are great. "Overture" and "Confrontation" are great "revisions" of some great tunes of the album. Summarizing: An album to buy right now.
 The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.06 | 363 ratings

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The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

4 stars Hallelujah! And praise the Lord! As brother NEAL MORSE races into the new phase of his career as THE NEAL MORSE BAND like a renegade choir boy eschewing all the gospel and Christian rock norms, he once again joins his brother in salvation Mike Portnoy (master of percussive fecundity from Dream Theater, Liquid Tension Experiment, Transatlantic, Flying Colors, OSI and much more) along with regular band members Randy George (bassist from Ajalon), Bill Haubauer (organs, pianos, synth) and Eric Gillette (lead and rhythm guitars). This is the second album released by the band and they all contribute vocals to some degree with Brother MORSE picking up the lead spotlight. If that's not enough there are also a whopping ten extra helping hands offering a cornucopia of sounds including violin, viola, cello, saxes, marimba, trumpets, pedal steel guitar and various other forms of percussion. The result of this smorgasbord of musical maestrohood is THE SIMILITUDE OF A DREAM. A walloping double album that takes the worship of all things retro, cleverly crafts them with Brother MORSE's signature sound and unleashes one of his most ambitious musical experiences to date.

Lyrically speaking THE SIMILITUDE OF A DREAM is a concept album that is loosely based on the 1678 Christian allegory written by John Bunyan. The full title of the original book was "The Pilgrim's Progress From This World To That Which Is To Come; Delivered Under THE SIMILITUDE OF A DREAM." The actual 17th century publication contained an astounding 108,260 words and written in narrative form in two major parts. And like the basic plot, this massive double album focuses on MORSE's spiritual practices that recounts a story in a dream sequence that is presented by a narrator that tells the story of a man named Christian who after a life of spiritually unfulfilling anguish is told he must leave the evils of the City Of Destruction and make a pilgrimage to the Celestial City to find peace and ultimate salvation. The album much like the book contains two parts with each part creating a separate mood and culmination of the adventures that unfold. Granted, a loose concept based on a massive double volume tome proves to be a nebulous and grainy representation of the greater writings from the past, but manages to create a coherent albeit simplified account based on brother MORSE's personal interpretations.

Beginning with a melancholic violin and viola intro it first appears that this is a symphonic chamber rock album with Brother MORSE singing in his usual mode making the listener think they're in store for a long, mellow drawn out and boring album. But all of a sudden, Brother MORSE, as if summoning up a miracle transmogrifies the super sappy sonicity into an Area inspired jazz-fusion riff that gives way to an energetic symphonic Yes infused guitar solo sequence that then jumps into a never ending changing-it-up of Keith Emerson keyboard gymnastics, bombastic heavy rock riffing and melodic meanderings punctuated by quick slaps of proggy time sig surprises. Whew! And that's just the first short intro "Long Day" and the longer "Overature!" When we finally get to "The Dream" it begins as a Pink Floyd acoustic guitar ballad that brings another double album "The Wall" to mind in musical structure along with those familiar echoes heard in "Comfortably Numb" which pops in from time to time throughout the album. Luckily none of these influences overshadow the overall musical mission but still screams retro-prog in every fashion. "City Of Destruction" takes the harder edged road that brings the whacky 70s world of Joe Walsh to mind slightly as the guitar riff stomps along like an angry child having a tantrum after not getting its way. The chorus for this track finds a reprise at the end of the second disc.

The retro-rock and prog celebration continues with more Pink Floyd (all throughout), The Beatles ("The Ways Of A Fool"), Peter Gabriel ("Slave To Your Mind"), Led Zeppelin ("The Man In The Iron Cage") and The Who ("I'm Running") finding their way into that familiar MORSE packaging that is ubiquitous on his myriad band projects. Also interspersed throughout the 100 minute plus listening experience are ample jazz-fusion segments, American country ("Freedom Song"), Chopin-esque classical piano ("The Mask") as well as heavy doses of prog metal ("Confrontation.") As far as going crazy and really delivering the prog goods, greatness is displayed on tracks like "City Of Destruction" but it really doesn't get any better than the workouts on the closing instrumental "The Battle" which effectively takes on the most challenging aspects of the progressive rock universe and unapologetically nails them to the wall. Highly turbulent rhythms that spasmodically intermingle with sagacious melodies, choral climaxing, unrestrained and uncompromising musical ascensions that end and trade off with other similarly structured runs in a complex tug of war between tension building theatrical antics is the stuff prog dreams are made of! The visions of a higher prog heaven in full interplay and by far the most challenging and adrenaline inducing track of the entire album experience.

Brother MORSE has stated that THE SIMILITUDE OF A DREAM is the 18th album that he has recorded together with Mike Portney and that this is the one that represents an absolute pinnacle of their musical symbiosis and after just one listen it is hard to deny that the creative juices were flowing on this one with one strong track after another changing things up just enough to keep that old attention span peaked all the while delivering familiar hooks and influences that triumphantly scoured the vast vaults of the hard rock and prog universe. While i would tend to agree with many that this is indeed one of Brother MORSE's strongest offerings to date, i do find the usual flaws that are ubiquitous on the entirety of the NEIL MORSE canon. Firstly is his limited vocal style. Yes, i simply find his range insufficient to fit in with the intensity and dynamics in the sheer scope of styles that the music meander throughout. While i don't find this to be a hindrance in my listening pleasure, i do find it detracts enough from the overall experience and dethrones any possibilities of this ever becoming a true classic in my world.

And then there are those overly sentimental sappy pieces that seem to haunt every MORSE album whether it be Spock's Beard, Transatlantic or the solo releases. In this case it's the last songs on each disc "Breath Of Angels" and "Broken Sky / Long Day (Reprise)" which find Brother MORSE entering AOR territory strutting around on easy listening autopilot and IMHO completely derailing all the momentum that each side of the album so masterfully accrues although there are segments of these light passages that do effectively mix and meld with the other styles on many tracks dispersed throughout that work quite well. While this album could not rightfully be deemed significantly dissimilar from Brother MORSE's previous strong albums such as "?" or "Sola Scriptura," it does pack a healthy dose of plentiful punches that will guarantee to hook the retro-prog fanatic from the get go. After several spins of this one, i'm still enthralled minus the minor quips that prevent the five star crown. All in all an excellent release and even more so considering it's a double album release.

Lastly, this is an album that is meant to be experienced as a continuous listen. It doesn't seem to be nearly as effective just sampling a track here and there, therefore is very much the sum of the parts that makes this a compelling cognitive workout. While brother MORSE's vocal limitation may dissuade me from becoming the most hardcore of fans, i readily concede that he is the master of delivering some of the most compelling Christian themed prog rock (and rock in general) in the music biz. While certainly on the pop side of the prog universe, great care is laid out in every little aspect of this album with the crystal clear production bringing the musical concept to fully realized vivaciousness. Retro-prog yes ,but an exciting slice of it's immortal calling. Music so compelling and animistic that it just refuses to be put to rest. While this album could not possibly be qualified as the most original of the lot, it nonetheless delivers many aspects of the past in the most equanimous, fastidious and efficacious ways possible along with the sheer stridency of brother MORSE's didactic prose backed up by his most eager and devoted musical followers. Let us give thanks for the music bestowed upon us today. Amen.

 The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.06 | 363 ratings

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The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by lizzard

3 stars Being fan of Neal Morse i cannot hide my dissapointment, the album is very sophisticated and strong at the first glance, but after i listened to it again and again, only two or three pieces were catchy enough to stay in my memory. It might be a concept album as they called it, but it is too long and pieces are too different in style and mood. As a resume it could probably be better accepted and digested if split in 2 or 3 albums but consisting of compositions which are closer to each other. Now, as it is, the album is very hard to compreghend and rate as a whole. My opinion - 3.5.
 The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream by MORSE, NEAL album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.06 | 363 ratings

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The Neal Morse Band: The Similitude Of A Dream
Neal Morse Symphonic Prog

Review by mekaton

5 stars A lot of well known bands have in their composition a well known artist that overshadows the rest in the group. However, here is not the case. This is an example of good teamwork, putting each of these artists under the spotlight. The music: a wide collection of loved styles (from Beatles, Led Zeppelin, to Yes and E.L.P, through Dream Theater and Flower Kings), but they all come together under an excellent mix. The peak of this piece comes in the finale when Mr. Morse makes us realize something extraordinary: he brings back the faith for the good & beautiful things amidst the misery of our times! (even if listened through a non-believers ears).
Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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