Transatlantic is a progressive rock supergroup formed in 1999 by Neal Morse (ex-vocalist/ex-keyboardist of Spock's Beard) and Mike Portnoy (ex-drummer of Dream Theater).
Originally intending to include Fates Warning guitarist Jim Matheos, Morse and Portnoy tapped The Flower Kings guitarist/vocalist Roine Stolt when Matheos was unable to participate. The band completed their lineup by adding bassist and progressive rock veteran Pete Trewavas from the group Marillion.
The name of the group was originally planned to be "Second Nature", but was changed to Transatlantic on suggestion by the cover artist Per Nordin.
Their first album, 2000's SMPT:e (a play on words, as both a combination of the members' last initials, as well as a common machine time protocol used in high end recording studios) received strong critical reviews, including "some of the best progressive rock music ever written" (Robert Taylor in Allmusic)).
A subsequent tour of the United States led to a double live CD, Transatlantic Live in America, and a video of the same name. The band showed their musical heritage on the live CD, presenting covers of The Beatles' "Strawberry Fields Forever", as well as a medley of Genesis' epic "Watcher of the Skies" and "Firth of Fifth".
Though SMPT:e contained the thirty-one minute opus "All of the Above", the band's second studio album, 2001's Bridge Across Forever, found the band flexing their muscles further in the long form for which progressive rock is known. The CD contained just four tracks, the twenty-six minute "Duel With the Devil", the fourteen minute "Suite Charlotte Pike", and the twenty-six minute "Stranger in Your Soul" making up the bulk of the disc, with the title track coming in at a relatively scant five minutes. The limited edition also contains a cover of Pink Floyd's "Shine on You Crazy Diamond".
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