Sounds like … the classically derived symphonic progressive rock of Morse's prior bands Spock's Beard and Transatlantic, as well as Genesis, Yes, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, and Phil Keaggy

At a glance … because it's so unique, and Morse is relatively unknown, many will unfortunately pass on One, an album of remarkable spiritual depth and incredible musical prowess

It's easy to surmise why progressive rock is a rare genre that hasn't enjoyed revival in the last thirty years. We live in a society that's grown more and more accustomed to concision in music—most people only make time for music in between daily routines, so they only want hits and they want them on demand. Today it seems that only self-confessed music geeks (like myself) are willing to make time for an 80-minute rock symphony. Indeed, I held off listening to the latest from Neal Morse for weeks before finding the time to properly savor it.

Recall last year, the gifted artist behind progressive rock bands Spock's Beard and Transatlantic reached out to the CCM scene with his magnus opus Testimony, which incredibly set Morse's lifelong personal journey of faith to more than two hours of music. Barely a year later, he's already back with One, another stuffed album that is in some ways more creative and symphonic than the previous effort. Testimony is a little more special because of its more unique and conceptual approach—in essence, a two-disc rock opera with a narrative flow and recurring themes. One is also a concept album, not as grand a scale, but delving more clearly into the classically inspired progressive rock of Genesis, Yes, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, and Morse's previous bands.

The project begins with an eighteen-minute, four-movement ...

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4½ Stars - Excellent
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Release Date
November 2, 2004
Metal Blade
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