iTunes

Opening the iTunes Store.If iTunes doesn't open, click the iTunes application icon in your Dock or on your Windows desktop.Progress Indicator
Opening the iBooks Store.If iBooks doesn't open, click the iBooks app in your Dock.Progress Indicator
iTunes

iTunes is the world's easiest way to organize and add to your digital media collection.

We are unable to find iTunes on your computer. To preview and buy music from Testimony by Neal Morse, download iTunes now.

Already have iTunes? Click I Have iTunes to open it now.

I Have iTunes Free Download
iTunes for Mac + PC

Testimony

Open iTunes to preview, buy, and download music.

Album Review

This is where it all opens up and changes. Neal Morse is the former frontman of Spock's Beard, the California prog rock monolith. While not his first solo effort, Testimony it is easily his most compelling and provocative. Testimony is a concept album based around Morse's personal testimonial of his life before and after encountering his center, Jesus Christ. Before any of you reach for the mouse button to click off, it might be worth reading a little further to find out why this is musically one of the more engaging progressive rock records in particular and rock & roll albums in general this year. Morse's vision is still one that is sophisticated and sprawling. His attention to detail is even greater and he brings so many elements into his mix that it will make the punters' heads spin. Here, folk, prog, classical, and beautiful singing and arrangements entwine with a challenging, moving, and provocative story. Conceptually, Testimony is divided into five parts over two CDs. Disc one features a gorgeous overture and elements of Laurel Canyon rock that are contrasted with gargantuan tracks loaded with keyboards and strings as the story moves from looking over a life spent in innocence and then loneliness and darkness. Disc two concentrates on the time period after conversion, with themes of transformation, surrender, willingness, and beatitude as well as struggling with doubt — only to persevere in the wealth and mystery that come with discovering meaning in life.

Production-wise, Testimony is seamless, full of fantastic dynamics and dramatic layering of instruments, voices, and "ambiences." Really, if Brian Wilson were into the big rock & roll business, the textured nuances found here would suit him fine, even if the screaming guitars and progressive jazz horn charts wouldn't. There are many guests on Morse's album: Kerry Livgren, Mike Portnoy, Aaron Marshall, Pamela Ward, Terry White, and Rich Mouser just to name a few. The bottom line is this: Testimony is, as a modern rock & roll album, a solid and engaging work that wears its heart firmly on its sleeve and dwells not in clever ambiguities, but in passion and pathos. As a "Christian rock" record, it lays the land for the kind of aesthetic excellence that should go into a project that uses the gospel as its inspiration. There are no tired clichés, no dumbed-down messages, and no fake exuberance for the praise crowd. The CCM industry will have a hard time co-opting this one because it not only doesn't suck, it reveals just how artistically bankrupt some of their productions really are. This deserves to be heard by fans of Marillion, Yes, ELP, early Genesis, and yes, fans of Spock's Beard. Actually, it deserves to be heard by anyone interested in the power of great music. Sadly, our current critical and cultural climate — in the media especially — is too far gone in creating personality cults and endless narcissistic self-referencing to take a record like this very seriously as art. That's too bad; it's our loss.

Customer Reviews

Lengthy Musical epic!

A musical without pictures! This is a fascinating 2hr epic, telling the story of a man converting to christianity. It's broken into 5 parts, but it could be considered 2 acts, 1 for each disk. Act 1 is part 1 & 2, act 2 is parts 3-5. VERY long, But VERY epic.

A Story of Hope!

The First CD deals with Neal's life, the struggles, the hardships and then he finds the LORD! Having listened to thousands of different records, none has touched me both musically and spirutally as this record has. I flew across the country to see of one of the few live shows with Mike Portnoy on drums! It was in Whittier, CA.

Please get this and devour the lyrics! If you are down and looking for a story of someone who has been through the ups and downs, you may be able to relate. If you love great musicianship then this may be for you!

Worth your time.

Though it's not as progressive or heavy as Question or Sola Scriptura, it has some great songs like "California Nights" with a brilliant concept about Neal Morse's rebirthing. It can be a bit of a daunting listen as a double album, so keep in mind that a long attention span is required.

Biography

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Los Angeles singer/songwriter and guitarist Neal Morse began his musical career early, taking piano lessons at five and performing in musicals and beginning guitar by the age of nine. By the time he reached his twenties, Morse wrote two musicals and played with Al Stewart and Peter White. After returning from an extensive European trip, Morse formed the progressive rock band Spock's Beard with his brother Al; the group released its debut album, The Light, in 1994. In addition to his duties with Spock's...
Full Bio
Testimony, Neal Morse
View In iTunes

Customer Ratings

Contemporaries