SONS OF APOLLO–former Dream Theater members Mike Portnoy and Derek Sherinian, Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal (ex-Guns N Roses), Billy Sheehan (The Winery Dogs, Mr. Big, David Lee Roth) and Jeff Scott Soto (ex-Journey, ex-Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force)–are ready to ring in the new decade with a sonic boom with their second studio album, appropriately titled, MMXX (pronounced: 20/20).
Produced by The Del Fuvio Brothers (Portnoy and Sherinian), MMXX will be released on the 17th January 2020 via InsideOutMusic/Sony as a standard CD package, Limited Edition 2 CD package (which includes instrumental mixes and a cappella excerpts), 2 LP + CD package, and on all digital formats. Pre-orders for all formats will be available starting November 15th, which will include an instant download of the albums first single, Goodbye Divinity, on iTunes and Amazon.
A teaser trailer was released on Inside Outs official YouTube page here https://youtu.be/nL3YM8yKJIM
Stylistically, we have followed the same path as the debut, outlines drummer Mike Portnoy. But we feel that it has come out stronger, simply because we know one another better. PSYCHOTIC SYMPHONY was the first time the five of us had worked together, so there was bound to be an air of experimentation happening. Now, we can draw on having the experience not only of recording that album, but also of touring together a lot. And now there is clearly a lot more obvious chemistry going on.
We did 83 shows on the last tour, adds keyboardist Derek Sherinian. And it was so worthwhile, because we came out of it with a stronger bond, and that is certainly reflected in what we wrote.
The writing process began at the start of the year, as Portnoy, Sherinian and guitarist Ron Bumblefoot Thal got together. The three of us were at my home studio in Pennsylvania, explains Portnoy. And it took about three weeks to get all the music written. That was a very smooth process. The last time, it certainly must have felt a little weird for Bumblefoot to be writing with Derek and me, because we were strangers to him. Now, we know one another better and that helped things push along.
Because we all have our home studios, it meant everyone could record there as and when they had opportunity, continues Sherinian. We all had the luxury of being able to take our time to get all the parts done, which was a huge help in the way the album’s come out. I suppose in all, it took about eight months to record everything.
The lyrics were written by Soto, who also came up with the melody lines with input from Sherinian. While Jeff was left to come up with the words on his own, as the melody lines are part of the music, it made sense for me to be involved with that part, says the keyboard player.
There are eight tracks on MMXX, with variations in length totalling 60 minutes. The final song is ‘New World Today, which is 16 minutes long, says Portnoy. This one has elements similar to ‘Opus Maximus’ and ‘Labyrinth’ on the previous album. It has some insane, brilliant instrumental moments, which I am sure the fans will love.