New York progressive metal veterans DREAM THEATER will take their Progressive Nation tour overseas for the first time with a run through Europe throughout September, October and November 2009.
Progressive Nation founder and mastermind, DREAM THEATER drummer Mike Portnoy, once again hand-picked the bands based on musicianship, originality and diversity… not necessarily by popularity and marquee value. He comments: "After the excitement of putting together two very cool Progressive Nation packages for North America, I knew it was time to bring the concept overseas and share some of these other great bands with our amazing fans throughout Europe."
Joining the tour will be DREAM THEATER's tourmates from Progressive Nation 2008 (and Roadrunner Records labelmates), the legendary OPETH from Stockholm, Sweden. Vocalist/guitarist Mikael Åkerfeldt is excited to partake in another Progressive Nation experience: "Once my man, 'The Port,' suggested they're going to bring Progressive Nation over to Europe, I more or less begged him to get us on it, haha! We had such a great time doing it in North America and it did many great things for us as a band. It's fair to say that I can't wait to get going with this one. It will be a blast, believe me!!"
Los Angeles band BIGELF will bring their unique brand of psychedelic, progressive hard rock to Progressive Nation 2009. Vocalist/keyboardist Damon Fox says: "When I first met Mike Portnoy, I felt like we were cut from the same cloth, a brother from another mother. We could talk rock and roll for eons (we probably will on tour, hell yeah!). Being added to the Progressive Nation tour feels like the planets have aligned for us and the elves have finally come home to Rivendell. The mentality of DREAM THEATER and Progressive Nation reminds me of a quote from the great Willy Wonka, 'There is no life I know to compare with pure imagination. Living there, you'll be free if you truly wish to be...' We eagerly await our return to Northern Europe and on a special note, we have never performed in England. This has driven us completely mad over the years. We are just brimming with passion and excitement to be able to bring our music back to the homeland which has inspired us so deeply."
Opening the show each night will be Canada's UNEXPECT who will surely blow people's minds with their insane musicianship and avant garde style of extreme progressive metal. Guitarist Syriak had this to say: "How can we rationally express that crazy excitement we feel about this awesome turn of events…Upon getting offered by Mike to be on board this amazing prog vessel, we accepted at once to participate and add our own mad musical touch to the crew! Being part of the European leg of Progressive Nation 2009 is an extreme honor for us and playing in company of such talented musicians shall be a true and heartfelt enjoyment! See you all on stage guys!! "
The European leg of Progressive Nation will follow on the heals of the North American version of Progressive Nation 2009 which will run throughout July and August 2009 in the U.S. and Canada featuring DREAM THEATER, ZAPPA PLAYS ZAPPA, PAIN OF SALVATION and BEARDFISH.
Progressive Nation's successful inaugural run throughout North America in 2008 featured OPETH, BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME and THREE.
A festival and headlining run of Europe in June, followed by the two Progressive Nation tours will be the first treks across the globe for DREAM THEATER in support of their newest Roadrunner Records release, "Black Clouds & Silver Linings", which is slated for a late June 2009 release.