This week's Metal Hammer podcast features an interview with Mike Portnoy, drummer of the American progressive metal band DREAM THEATER. During the chat, Portnoy discusses the upcoming DREAM THEATER album, "Black Clouds & Silver Linings", which is scheduled for release on June 23 via Roadrunner Records. Portnoy talks about the lyrics for the new DREAM THEATER song "The Best of Times", which he penned as a tribute to his late father Howard Portnoy, who died on January 4, 2009 at the age of 68."This is a real heavy personal subject about my dad who passed away during the making of this album — he was battling cancer throughout the making of the record," Portnoy said. "I just wanted to write something that was a tribute to our life together. I didn't want to focus on something dark and depressing, I didn't want to focus on the last six months of his life before dying, I wanted to focus on our 41 years together before that. I played the song to him before he died and it meant the world to us to hear that before he died." He added, "I don't know if I'll be able to handle [performing] that [song] live just yet. It's still a hard song for me to listen to." Listen to the entire interview by downloading this week's Metal Hammer podcast at this location.
In addition to the standard-version CD, "Black Clouds & Silver Linings" will also be available on vinyl LP, as well as a three-disc, special-edition CD that will include the full album, a CD of instrumental mixes of the album and a CD of six cover songs, the titles of which will be revealed at a later date. Six weeks prior to the June 23 street date, Roadrunner will release one cover song per week through digital retailers. DREAM THEATER commenced work on "Black Clouds & Silver Linings" — the band's second for Roadrunner, following up 2007's "Systematic Chaos" — in October of last year. Drummer Mike Portnoy and guitarist John Petrucci are once again at the helm as producers, while Paul Northfield mixed the record. "Black Clouds & Silver Linings" track listing: 01. A Nightmare to Remember
02. A Rite of Passage
04. The Shattered Fortress
05. The Best of Times
06. The Count of Tuscany A video for the first single, "A Rite of Passage", was shot in late March. Portnoy previously stated about the upcoming CD, "Imagine a DREAM THEATER album with 'A Change Of Seasons', 'Octavarium', 'Learning To Live', 'Pull Me Under' and 'The Glass Prison'... all on one album... COULD YOU HANDLE IT?? Excited? I sure am!!!!"