Neal Morse

1 Momentum
2 Thoughts Part 5
3 Smoke and Mirrors
4 Weathering Sky
5 Freak
6 World Without End

Neal Morse – Keyboards, Guitars, Vocals
Mike Portnoy – Drums
Randy George – Bass

Testimony 2 Live in LA (2011)
Testimony 2 (2011)
Mighty To Save (Worship Sessions 2010) Lifeline (2008)
Sing It High (collection of singles) (2007)
So Many Roads Live In Europe (2009)
Worship Sessions Volume IV: The River (2009)
Worship Sessions Volume III: Secret Place (2008)
Question: Live (2007)
Songs from the Highway (2007)
Sola Scriptura (2007)
One Demos (2007)
Cover to Cover (2006)
Neal Morse's Bavarian Polka Odyssey (2006)
Worship Sessions Volume II: Send the Fire (2006)
God Won't Give Up (2005)
Question (2005)
Worship Sessions Volume I: Lead Me Lord (2005)
One (2004)
Testimony (2003)
It's Not Too Late (2001)
Merry Christmas From The Morse Family (2000)
Neal Morse (1999)

Paul Gilbert – Guitar solo on Momentum
Adson Sodre – Guitar solos on World Without End
Bill Hubauer – Clarinet, Flute, Guitar and additional keys on The Mystery
Eric Gillette – Additional Vocals on Thoughts Part 5 Wil Morse - Additional Vocals on Thoughts Part 5
Chris Carmichael – Strings
Rick Altizer - Additional Vocals on Weathering Sky and Smoke and Mirrors

Recorded at The Morse House, Nashville 2012
Produced by Neal Morse
Mixed by Rich Mouser
Thomas Ewerhard – artwork
Jerry Guidroz – drum engineering
Chad Hoerner – video director
Ken Love – mastering
Joey Pippin – band photo

Released 10/9-2012
Reviewed 21/10-2012


He is very busy releasing music this man, Neal Morse, considering how many albums he has released in the last few years. Now he is back with a new album again, this time called Momentum which might be something he has going for him which is why he is churning out new releases by the minute. For help with this one he has Portnoy and George along with several guest musicians, and any guy willing to listen has an hour of music ahead of him. One hour of predictable music ahead of him even. I seriously think that Morse hasn’t created anything feeling particularly fresh since 2000 when he was part of Spock’s Beard and released the album V, an album that I really like, I also like many of Morse’s soloalbums but none of them has really offered anything new or fresh and most of the latter ones has been a disappointment in that they have been good but feels like I have heard them before meaning that they are very predictable which is not what progressive music should be about. But now there is a new one that has received amazing reviews all around, apparently at least four reviewers considering it a timeless classic and something groundbreaking considering that it has received the highest mark from so many guys as far as I have been able to find out. There are probably more that thinks alike, and no denying that Morse is an amazing musician but that is not the same as being a good creator of music.

This album is once again more of the same, it is very predictable for the one who has heard a lot of Neal Morse. The sound is clean and positive, the vocals are the same happy catchy and harmonising ones. The complexity of the songs are there, the strings and all of those progressive additions, as is the obligatory magnum Opus of thirty six hours that end the thing in the typical Morsesque style. The songs bar Smoke and Mirrors goes at the same pace so the variation is surprisingly small considering that we are dealing with a progressive band here, and the surprises musically are nonexistent just as they have been for the last couple of albums by Morse. A high quality and typical Morse production is what he have here, no surprises as it is just as I expected beforehand. Think progressive music with emphasis on happy melodies and strong vocals harmonies with some catchiness and you know exactly how this album sounds.

I like this album, it is good and the songs are all of a high quality bar perhaps the ending track that is a century long and quite dull. So other than the predictability and the too long playing time there is nothing particularly wrong with this album and those already into the Morse thing will enjoy this album a lot, of that I am sure. But for the generic listener who perhaps likes Spock’s Beard and Neal’s solo offering, this offers nothing that we doesn’t already have and it is no better than what has come before either making this a rather pointless album for anybody but the hardcore fan or collector. Maybe you will be enthusiastic and enjoy it at first but after playing it a few times you will realise that it is neither fresher, nor better than what you already have with Morse contributing in your record collection. It is one of those good but pointless albums, kind of like the latest offering by Saga which I also liked but it has the same problem: a strong history.

I think the opening title track and the track Freak are the two best ones on the album, none of them a true Morse classic but still very good songs as are the other shorter songs on the album, the long one is just a show of delusions of grandeur and completely pointless and mostly boring with some bright and enjoyable parts. All in all I think this is an album that will appeal to the fans and to many other but if you already know and listen to some of Morse’s stuff and isn’t a hardcore fan of that you will find this album quite underwhelming as it is just Morse of the same and you’ve hard it all before.



Label: InsideOut
Three similar bands: Spock's Beard/Transatlantic/Dream Theater
Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

läs på svenska