Flying Colors is the band founded by former Dream Theatre drummer Mike Portnoy and Deep Purple guitarist Steve Morse. Alongside them are Neal Morse (Spocks beard, Transatlantic), Dave LaRue (dixie Dregs), and Casey McPherson (Alpha Rev). So you’ve got a mix of musicians with backgrounds in classic hard rock, prog rock and pop.
The band released their debut album in 2012, which received great reviews – and understandbly so as it was a superb album. Since then they’ve released a live album, but are now ready to release their second studio album – “Second Nature”. Given their other commitments, I’m impressed that they’ve managed to write and record a new album so soon, but I’m very glad they have.
The album only contains 9 tracks which may not seem many, but when you realise that two of them are over ten minutes long, then you start to realise there is more here than at a first glance – in fact the 9 songs clock in at around 67 minutes.
Comments on a few of the tracks…
The album kicks off with “Open up your eyes”. With most bands a song is almost over after four minutes, but here the vocals don’t even start till then – this is one epic song, clocking in at a massive twelve minutes. I’m not quite sure how it can be that long – when I listen it seems to go past a lot faster than that, but that’s just down to how good a song it is – there’s no sense of repetitiveness or feeling of it dragging at all. It really is a superb piece of work to open the album with.
Next up is the first single to be taken from the album – “Mask machine”. if you havent seen the video for it yet then I’d recommend you watch it now and listen to a great song.
“One love forever” has a definite Celtic folk feel to it right from the start. That Celtic folk element is repeated on and off throughout the song, and adds nicely to the smooth prog sound that the band have overall. It’s a fantastic song
“Peaceful harbor” lives up to its name with a beautifully soft haunting introduction with rich background music and soaring vocals before the song proper starts with acoustic guitar and vocals. It’s the most mellow song on the album.
The album ends with the second epic – “Cosmic symphony” which clocks in just shy of 12 minutes long. Divided into three sections it’s another song that is Epic in all senses of the word.
I love the first Flying Colors album, but I have no hesitation in saying that this new album is even better than the first. It’s stunningly good. it’s one of those albums that contains so much depth and detail that you can listen to it again and again and keep noticing different details every time. I’ve probably listened to the album 20 times by now, and have no intention of putting the CD away any time soon.
“Second nature” will be released on 6th October 2014
1. Open up your eyes
2. Mask machine
3. Bombs away
4. The fury of my love
5. A place in your world
6. Lost without you
7. One love forever
8. Peaceful harbor
9. Cosmic symphony: (i) Still life of the world, (ii) Searching for the air, (iii) Pound for pound
FLYING COLORS OCTOBER 2014 TOUR
10/02 LOS ANGELES, CA JAMES ARMSTRONG THEATER
10/03 CHICAGO, IL ARACDA THEATER
10/04 PHILADELPHIA, PA KESWICK THEATER
10/07 BARCELONA, SPAIN RAZZMATAZZ 2
10/08 MILAN, ITALY MILAN LIVE CLUB
10/09 TILBURG, NETHERLANDS 013
10/11 FRANKFURT, GERMANY BATSCHKAPP
10/12 PRATTELN, SWITZERLAND Z7
10/13 LONDON, UK ISLINGTON ASSEMBLY HALL
10/14 PARIS, FRANCE ALHAMBRA