For the prog-fans the world over who have been on tenterhooks as to the replacement for Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy, the wait is almost over. According to Gibson.com, Roadrunner records have announced that details of the band's new drummer will be announced at 11am (EST) on Thursday, April 21st. For information on the audition process and who will be claiming the vacant drum stool, fans need to sign up the band's mailing list on their Facebook page.
The band conducted three days of auditions in New York a month after original drummer Mike Portnoy parted ways with the band in September 2010. Portnoy, citing burnout from "never taking time off from DT's never-ending responsibilities" as his reason for departure, at the time touring with Avenged Sevenfold as a replacement for Jimmy "The Rev" Sullivan, who had passed away in December 2009. Portnoy, upon leaving Avenged Sevenfold in 2010, had reportedly asked his former band mates to rejoin, a request that was rejected.
Singer James LaBrie revealed, in an October 2010 interview, that 7 world class drummers had been lined up as potential replacements for Portony at the New York City auditions. According to guitarist John Petrucci, "The departure of our lifelong band mate and friend was an unexpected and truly heartbreaking blow... The fact that as a result of that event we'd be introduced to seven infinitely capable and uniquely talented drummers was heartening."
Dream Theater are set to headline the High Voltage festival in London this summer. The band is currently working on their 11th studio album. Title, track listing and release date for the new record have yet to be announced.