Dream Theater – comprised of James LaBrie, John Petrucci, Jordan Rudess, John Myung and Mike Mangini – was in the middle of a sold-out world tour in support of their last release Distance Over Time and the 20th anniversary of Scenes From A Memory when a Global Pandemic brought the world to a stop. The musicians found themselves at home with LaBrie in Canada and the rest of the group in the States. As fate would have it, they’d just finished construction on DTHQ (Dream Theater Headquarters) —a combination live recording studio, rehearsal space, control room, equipment storage, and creative hive. With LaBrie in Canada, he initially wrote with the band via ZOOM on a monitor in DTHQ. In March 2021, he flew down to New York, quarantined, and recorded his vocals face-to-face with Petrucci. The album ultimately threaded together lean and uncompromising hooks with tried-and-true technical proficiency.

“We just love to play our instruments,” observes Petrucci. “That never goes away. I love to be creative, write, and exercise that part of my mind. We’ve been able to do this for a long time, and we don’t take it for granted. Whenever we get together, we know we can’t disappoint ourselves or our fans, so we manage to try even harder.”

“We approach every album like it’s our first,” adds LaBrie. “It’s been such a great ride, but we’re not going to stop.”