Original Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy has officially returned to the band after thirteen years.The band announced that they have reunited with the acclaimed drummer and will be entering the recording studio to begin work on their next studio album, their first with Portnoy since 2009’s “Black Clouds & Silver Linings.” Portnoy left Dream Theater in 2010 wanting to concentrate on other projects, and was replaced by Mike Mangini, who played with Dream Theater across five studio albums and accompanying world tours. Mangini will depart the band upon Portnoy’s return.
Portnoy shared: “I am overwhelmed with joy to be returning home and reuniting with my brothers!mThere is so much shared history between us all…so many memories, so much music…to think we’re coming up on 40 years since this journey began! The idea of creating new music together is so exciting and I absolutely cannot wait to hit the road and get to play live for a whole new generation of fans that weren’t ever able to see this lineup before…There’s no place like home!!”
Departing drummer Mike Mangini said in a statement: “I understand Dream Theater’s decision to get Mike Portnoy back at this time. As was said from Day 1, my place was not to fill all the roles that Mike held in the band. I was to play the drums in order to help the band carry on. My main role of keeping our live show working tightly on a nightly basis was an intense and rewarding experience. Thankfully, I got to experience playing music with these iconic musicians, as well as some fun times laced with humor. I also really enjoyed spending lots of time with the crew. And then there’s the GRAMMY win, which was amazingly satisfying. To the fans: thank you so much for being amazing to me. I cherish the pictures I have of you all losing your minds and having fun. Finally, I really love the band, crew and management and wish them and the entire organization all the best.”
Guitarist John Petrucci added: “Mike Mangini’s drumming is otherworldly and I’m extremely grateful for the time he spent with us in Dream Theater. I’m very proud of all the amazing music we made together that culminated in our first GRAMMY win last year and the countless magical moments that we’ve shared on stage over the past 13 years. I wish him all the best of success in his future musical endeavours. I’m incredibly excited to welcome Mike Portnoy back into Dream Theater! As an original founding member, long-time friend and incredibly talented and creative drummer, I know that his return will bring a renewed spirit, passion, and energy into DT that all of us, including our fans, will joyfully welcome. I can’t wait to roll up our sleeves and get back into the studio together!”
Following his split with Dream Theater, Portnoy formed new bands Adrenaline Mob and The Winery Dogs. The former, which he formed with Symphony X singer Russell Allen, and the latter was comprised of a trio with former Poison guitarist Richie Kotzen and Mr. Big bassist Billy Sheehan. Portnoy also drummed with metal band Avenged Sevenfold in 2010. He remains a member of the heavy metal supergroup Metal Allegiance, alongside former Megadeth bassist Dave Ellefson and Testament guitartist Alex Skolnick.
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