Flying Colors is the new band founded by former Dream Theatre drummer Mike Portnoy and Deep Purple guitarist Steve Morse. Joining 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 - an interesting mix.
Unbelievably the album was written and recorded in just 9 days ! At a time when bands seem to spend months writing before even starting to record an album to do the whole thing in just over a week is a breathtaking achievement, and even more so when you hear the album and get blown away by its quality.
There really is a great mix of styles in this album, yet the songs feel like they belong together
Comments on a few of the songs on the album...
"Shoulda coulda woulda" has a heavier rock feel to it, and Casey McPherson's voice works superbly well here (as indeed it does on the whole album). Pounding drums and great powerful guitar riffs really put the power into this song, while the vocals give it a smooth polish.
"Kayla" immediately slows the pace down with its slow melodic opening before the song picks up a bit of pace.
"Ths storm" features an excellent guitar solo. Fairly often I feel solos are included even though they arent necessarily the best thing to have in a particular song and might be there to satisfy someones ego, but here it works superbly well and really adds to the song.
"Forever in a daze" starts with a Faith no more sounding section before the great chorus which has a feel of The Police - I think it's the vocals that give that feel. So a combination of Faith no more and The Police - surely that couldnt work, but it does, this is a really great track.
"Love is what I'm waiting for" has a definite 10cc feel and is one of my favourite tracks on the album
"Everything changes" slows the pace down and is a great ballad.
"All falls down" is the heaviest song on the album by far - there is so much power in this song from the drums and the bass, and the great guitar work adds nicely to it - a great heavy rock track.
The album ends with a 12 minute epic (must be those Prog roots showing through to make a twelve minute song), "Infinite fire"
Even though Flying Colors arent being billed as a super group, they clearly deserve that tag based on the track records of their members. Given how hit and miss many of the so called "super groups" turn out to be, I didnt have high expectations for this album, but I was in for a real shock when I listened to it - this is a stunningly good album.
This album is packed full of variety, fantastically good songs, great vocals and musicianship - one of the best albums of the year so far in my opinion.
Flying Colors will be released on 26th March via Music Theories recordings
Flying colors are:
1. Blue ocean
2. Shoulda coulda woulda
4. The Storm
5. Forever in a daze
6. Love is what I'm waiting for
7. Everything changes
8. Better than walking away
9. All falls down
10. Fool in my heart
11. Infinite fire