Ayreon: The making of 01011001 (2008)

Front cover

01011001 is the seventh studio album by Arjen Anthony Lucassen's long-running Ayreon project. Seventeen singers in total (including Lucassen himself) contributed to the album, more than in any other Ayreon album. Of these, except Lucassen, only Anneke van Giersbergen (ex-The Gathering) and Floor Jansen (After Forever) have sung on previous Ayreon albums: van Giersbergen on Into The Electric Castle, Jansen on The Dream Sequencer. It also stars, among others, Bob Catley from Magnum, Hansi Kürsch from Blind Guardian, Jørn Lande, and Steve Lee from Gotthard in his final guest appareance before his death in 2010. The album was a commercial and critical success. Allmusic reviewer Cosmo Lee praised the album, saying that it has "pristine production and elaborate songs that feel like full albums." He went on to say that "Music this over the top almost defies criticism. Reviewing it is like reviewing the world's tallest building. It doesn't care; it just goes on and on." Chad Bower, in his review for About.com, said that 01011001 "has something for everyone," and that the album is "a musical tour de force that takes the listener on a musical journey with an interesting storyline and very well-written songs." Record Collector's Tim Jones noted the differing styles of the album's songs, saying that "The Truth is in Here" is similar to the music of Blackmore's Night, that "River of Time" is reminiscent of Jethro Tull, and that "Beneath the Waves" reminded him of Pink Floyd.

The Truth Is In Here


Story

Through technological advancement, ‘Forever’, a race of aquatic beings living on Planet Y, has found the secret of longevity. They have advanced to the point that they have become completely dependent on machines and are losing their emotions. A passing comet on a collision course with Planet Earth provides the opportunity to revitalize their race; ‘Forever’ harness the comet to carry their DNA to a new home on Earth. When the comet and Earth collide, the cataclysmic impact exterminates the dinosaurs ("The Fifth Extinction"), but from the ashes of destruction, humans arise. At first, the experiment with seeded DNA seems successful: through the humans ‘Forever’ vicariously relive the emotions they experienced before the age of machines. In order to help mankind overcome their physical ailments and mental limitations, ‘Forever’ speeds up human evolution. But the result is tragic: people develop a similar technological dependency with their emotions waning just like ‘Forever’ and moral development not keeping pace with their capacity to invent. ‘Forever’ must find a way to save mankind from its imminent self-destruction… or should they? 01011001 it's a double album and the first disc's name is Y, the name of the fictional planet where the ‘Forever’ come from and the second disc's name is Earth, where the ‘Forever’ populated to experiment feelings. The name of the album, 01011001, is the binary representation of the American Standard Code for Information Interchange (ASCII) value of the letter Y.

Unnatural Selection

Track listing:

CD 1-"Y"
1. Age of Shadows (including We Are Forever) (10:47)
2. Comatose (4:26)
3. Liquid Eternity (8:10)
4. Connect the Dots (4:13)
5. Beneath the Waves (8:26)
a) Beneath the Waves
b) Face the Facts
c) But a Memory...
d) World Without Walls
e) Reality Bleeds
6. Newborn Race (7:49)
a) The Incentive
b) The Vision
c) The Procedure
d) Another Life
e) Newborn Race
f) The Conclusion
7. Ride the Comet (3:29)
8. Web of Lies (2:50)

CD 2-"Earth"
1. The Fifth Extinction (10:29)
a) Glimmer of Hope
b) World of Tomorrow Dreams
c) Collision Course
d) From the Ashes
e) Glimmer of Hope (reprise)
2. Waking Dreams (6:31)
3. The Truth Is In Here (5:12)
4. Unnatural Selection (7:15)
5. River of Time (4:24)
6. E=MC2 (5:50)
7. The Sixth Extinction (12:18)
a) Echoes on the Wind
b) Radioactive Grave
c) 2085
d) To the Planet of Red
e) Spirit on the Wind
f) Complete the Circle

E=MC2
Personnel

Vocalists:
Bob Catley (Magnum)–Forever
Tom S. Englund (Evergrey)–Forever
Anneke van Giersbergen (ex-The Gathering)–Forever
Daniel Gildenlöw (Pain of Salvation)–Forever
Liselotte Hegt (Dial)–Mr. L's nurse on "The Truth is in Here"
Floor Jansen (After Forever)–Forever
Hansi Kürsch (Blind Guardian)–Forever
Jørn Lande (Masterplan)–Forever
Steve Lee (Gotthard)–Forever
Arjen Anthony Lucassen–Mr. L on "The Truth is in Here", and backing vocals on "Connect the Dots"
Magali Luyten–Forever
Jonas Renkse (Katatonia)–Forever
Simone Simons (Epica)–Simone on "Web of Lies"
Ty Tabor (King's X)–an average middle-class worker on "Connect the Dots"
Marjan Welman–a 21st-century scientist on "E=mc2"
Wudstik-a 21st-century scientist on "E=mc2"
Phideaux Xavier–PX on "Web of Lies"

Instrumentalists:
Tomas Bodin (The Flower Kings)–synthesizer solo on "Waking Dreams"
Joost van den Broek (After Forever)–synthesizer solo and piano on "The Sixth Extinction"
David Faber–cellos
Jeroen Goossens–flute, soprano and tenor recorder on "The Truth is in Here", bass flute on "Unnatural Selection", tin whistle on "River of Time"
Lori Linstruth–guitar solo on "Newborn Race"
Arjen Anthony Lucassen–electric and acoustic guitars, bass guitars, mandolin, keyboards, synthesizers, Hammond, and Solina
Ben Mathot–violins
Michael Romeo (Symphony X)–guitar solo on "E=mc2"
Derek Sherinian (ex-Dream Theater)–synthesizer solo on "The Fifth Extinction"
Ed Warby–drums and percussion

Production:
Jef Bertels–cover painting
Yvette Boertje–image for "The Truth is in Here"
Felipe Machado Franco–lay-out and illustrations
Arjen Anthony Lucassen–recording, production, mixing, and mastering
Simone van Vegten–3D illustrations

This is a film about the making of Ayreon's 01011001.