May 30, 2023

SONS OF APOLLO–former Dream Theater members Mike Portnoy and Derek Sherinian, Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal (ex-Guns N’ Roses), Billy Sheehan (The Winery Dogs, Mr. Big, David Lee Roth) and Jeff Scott Soto (ex-Journey, ex-Yngwie Malmsteen’s Rising Force)–are ready to ring in the new decade with a sonic boom with their second studio album, appropriately titled, MMXX (pronounced: 20/20).

Produced by The Del Fuvio Brothers (Portnoy and Sherinian), ‘MMXX’ will be released on January 17, 2020, via InsideOutMusic/Sony as a standard CD package, Limited Edition 2 CD package (which includes instrumental mixes and a cappella excerpts), 2 LP + CD package, and on all digital formats.

Today they launch the Christian Rios-directed video for the albums second single ‘Fall To Ascend.’ Watch it now here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I8K02hqnBxE

The bands’ video for ‘Goodbye Divinity’ reached over 1.5 million plays in just over two weeks. Watch it now here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZlyaCqqZ0A

Pre-orders are available from today, with digital pre-orders on iTunes & Amazon receiving an immediate download of “Goodbye Divinity” and “Fall To Ascend.” Pre-order now here: https://soa.lnk.to/MMXX

“Stylistically, we have followed the same path as the debut,” outlines drummer Mike Portnoy. “But we feel that it has come out stronger, simply because we know one another better. PSYCHOTIC SYMPHONY was the first time the five of us had worked together, so there was bound to be an air of experimentation happening. Now, we can draw on having the experience not only of recording that album but also of touring together a lot. And now there is a lot more obvious chemistry going on.”

“We did 83 shows on the last tour,” adds keyboardist Derek Sherinian. “And it was so worthwhile, because we came out of it with a stronger bond, and that is certainly reflected in what we wrote.”

The writing process began at the start of the year, as Portnoy, Sherinian, and guitarist Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal got together. “The three of us were at my home studio in Pennsylvania,” explains Portnoy. “And it took about three weeks to get all the music written. That was a very smooth process. The last time, it certainly must have felt a little weird for Bumblefoot to be writing with Derek and me, because we were strangers to him. Now, we know one another better, and that helped things push along.”

“Because we all have our home studios, it meant everyone could record there as and when they had the opportunity,” continues Sherinian. “We all had the luxury of being able to take our time to get all the parts done, which was a huge help in the way the album’s come out. I suppose in all; it took about eight months to record everything.”

There are eight tracks on MMXX, with variations in length totaling 60 minutes. “The final song is ‘New World Today,’ which is 16 minutes long,” says Portnoy. “This one has elements similar to ‘Opus Maximus’ and ‘Labyrinth’ on the previous album. It has some insane, brilliant instrumental moments, which I am sure the fans will love.”

“We wanted to do something epic here, as we did with ‘Opus Maximus’ last time around,” adds Sherinian. “You have to remember that Mike and I come from Dream Theater, where we never bothered about how long a song was. So, for us doing a 16-minute track is not a problem.”

Here’s the tracklisting for MMXX:

  1. Goodbye Divinity (7:16)
  2. Wither To Black (4:48)
  3. Asphyxiation (5:09)
  4. Desolate July (6:11)
  5. King Of Delusion (8:49)
  6. Fall To Ascend (5:07)
  7. Resurrection Day (5:51)
  8. New World Today (16:38)

A pure chronological fact inspired the album title. “This will be released in mid-January 2020,” says Portnoy. “That means it will be one of the first releases in what is a new decade. So I came up with the idea of calling it ‘2020,’ except having it written in the Latin form of ‘MMXX.’” And the album’s artwork has been created by Thomas Ewerhard (who was responsible for the cover design of PSYCHOTIC SYMPHONY), which inevitably reflects the title. As Portnoy explains, “For the first record, we had a mythological feel. This time around, though, there’s a much more futuristic style to what we’ve got. It has a very 21st-century appeal. And the band crest is more polished, cleaned up and a lot more modern than last time when it had an old fashioned look.”

“Each member of this band has their signature sound on their instrument,” adds Sherinian. “And when you put all of this together, what you get is a wonderful five-headed beast. It makes this a sonically special band, which is definitely what comes across on MMXX. You can hear odd time signatures and amazingly crazy performances here. Overall, we’ve been satisfyingly more adventurous this time than we were before, and I know people are sure to love what we’ve done.”

In touring news, the band’s headlining “MMXX World Tour” will launch January 23 in Sacramento, CA, and will take them around the world throughout the new year. They have also just announced European tour dates for March 2020, as well as South American dates for April 2020. You can find those below:


North America 2020

Thu 1/23            Sacramento, CA            Crest Theater

Fri 1/24             Pomona, CA                 The Glass House (https://bit.ly/2H8kNxY)

Sat 1/25            Los Angeles, CA           The Roxy (https://bit.ly/2H8aLNb)

Sun 1/26           San Francisco, CA        The Fillmore (https://bit.ly/31FYAPj)

Tue 1/28            Salt Lake City, UT          The State Room (https://bit.ly/31D8P7e)

Wed 1/29          Denver, CO                   The Oriental Theater (https://bit.ly/2Z5QC4s)

Fri 1/31             St. Charles, IL               Arcada Theater (https://bit.ly/30igOGu)

Sat 2/1              Battle Creek, MI             The Music Factory (https://bit.ly/31IwXVQ)

Sun 2/2             Toronto, ONT.               Mod Club (https://bit.ly/2Z8OuJ8)

Mon 2/3            Montreal QUE.              Corona Theater (https://bit.ly/2KF9eyU)

Wed 2/5            Boston, MA                  Paradise Rock Club (https://bit.ly/2N2rMMx)

Thu 2/6             New York, NY               Gramercy Theater (https://livemu.sc/2KHNN1r)

Fri 2/7               Jim Thorpe, PA             Penn’s Peak (https://bit.ly/2TLMy4w)

Sat 2/8              Englewood, NJ             Bergen PAC (https://bit.ly/31MKyM7)

Europe 2020

Sat 2/29            Karlsruhe, Germany                   Rock Shop

Mon 3/2            Drammen, Norway                     Union Scene

Tue 3/3             Gothenburg, Sweden                 Traedgarn

Thu 3/5             Kyiv, Ukraine                             N.A.U Theatre

Sat 3/7              Moscow, Russia                        RED

Sun 3/8             St Petersburg, Russia                Aurora

Tue 3/10            Pratteln, Switzerland                  Z7

Wed 3/11          Milan, Italy                                Live Club

Fri 3/13             Bilbao, Spain                            Santana 27

Sat 3/14            Barcelona, Spain                       Razzmatazz 2

Sun 3/15           Madrid, Spain                           La Riviera

Tue 3/17            Marseille, France                       Cepac Silo

Wed 3/18          Paris, France                             Machine du Moulin Rouge

Thu 3/19            London, U.K.                            Islington Assembly Hall

Fri 3/21             Eindhoven, Netherlands             Prognosis Festival

Sun 3/22           Show Brno, Czech Republic       Sono

Tue 3/24            Kosice, Slovakia                       Colosseum

Wed 3/25          Budapest, Hungary                    Barba Negra

South America 2020

Sat 4/18             São Paulo, Brazil                        Tom Brasil

Sun 4/19            Rio de Janeiro, Brazil                 Circo Voador

Tues 4/21          Santiago, Chile                           Blondie

Thu 4/23            Buenos Aires, Argentina            Teatro Flores

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