James LaBrie (Dream Theater) is planning to release a new solo album, titled “Beautiful Shade Of Gray,” on May 20. The singer worked on the effort with Paul Logue (Eden’s Curse).
LaBrie said the following about working with Logue during a recent appearance on “The Everyman Podcast“:
“I sang on one of [EDEN’S CURSE’s] songs back in 2010 called ‘No Holy Man’; so I guest on that. And I really liked Paul’s writing. To me, Paul’s writing was more from a classical era — like the ’70s; that classic rock approach. And I had a lot of ideas in that vein.
Paul and I actually bumped into each other — you think fate isn’t there with you; holy shit… The day after we finished the show — DREAM THEATER in Glasgow [on] February 23rd . I’m waiting for my flight on the 24th to go to London and then Toronto, and Paul walks by me and he goes, ‘James!’ I’m, like, ‘Oh my God!’ He goes, ‘You know I was at the show last night.’ He kept trying to e-mail me on my old e-mail address. And he goes, ‘Listen, let me know. You wanna get together? You wanna do some writing?’ And I said, ‘I’d love to.’ At the time, I said, ‘I don’t know. Some freaky shit’s going on. You’re hearing about this virus?’ ‘Yeah. Yeah.’ [I said] ‘We’ve gotta go to Asia, then we’ve gotta go to freakin’ South America and North America and all that.’ I said, ‘So we’re probably not gonna be done till October, but why don’t we start writing then? Or why don’t we start throwing ideas back in the meantime, and I can even be on the road and working on it?’ And he goes, ‘Great.’ All of a sudden, the world closes down. So we got on it… It was probably… Everything closed down March 15th, I believe, and by March 20th, him and I were already passing ideas back and forth.”
“We started as, we said, ‘Let’s just keep it real raw and acoustic-based — that’ll be the fundamental of this album,’ and then it kind of morphed into more of an ensemble, so [with] keyboards… Marco Sfogli is playing lead guitar on all the tracks. Paul is playing all the rhythm acoustic guitars and bass. And then [my son] Chance [LaBrie] is doing drums. Christian Pulkkinen is the keyboard player, who’s a fantastic keyboard player, piano player. All the lyrics, except one, I penned.
It was really interesting how it came together, whether I’d be throwing [Paul] a riff or I’d be throwing him a melody idea that became a chorus to one of the songs or verses. And then he’d throw me back his ideas musically. And we slowly but surely put it all together. We had everybody fully involved. And it came out fantastic. The label is really stoked about it. It has that kind of ZEPPELIN-esque feel to it, but still the modern-day aspects of it as well are there. So it’s great.”