With the album The Source, Arjen Lucassen adds a whole new chapter to his impressive body of work Ayreon, for which he already laid the foundation in the mid 90’s. The Source offers once again everything that gained him dedicated fans worldwide: an impressive cast of singers and musicians, compelling songs, an overwhelming sound and an intriguing story. The international status of Ayreon has been such that Arjen Lucassen could write his characters with some of the most respected singers in rock in mind: James LaBrie (Dream Theater), Tommy Giles Rogers (Between the Buried and Me), Simone Simons (Epica), Mike Mills (Toehider), Floor Jansen (Nightwish), Hansi Kürsch (Blind Guardian), Michael Eriksen (Circus Maximus), Tobias Sammet (Edguy, Avantasia), Nils K. Rue (Pagan’s Mind), Zaher Zorgati (Myrath), Tommy Karevik (Kamelot) and Russell Allen (Symphony X). Special musical contributions were offered by guitarists Paul Gilbert (Mr. Big), Guthrie Govan (The Aristocrats, Asia, Steven Wilson), Marcel Coenen and keyboard player Mark Kelly (Marillion). Like on all his previous albums Arjen Lucassen played on a wide variety of instruments, while drummer extraordinaire Ed Warby (o.a. Elegy, Gorefest, Hail Of Bullets) added once again inimitable performances to an Ayreon album. The Story of The Source is initially set on Alpha, a planet that is facing a potentially fatal crisis six billion years ago. Ecological and political catastrophes threaten all human life. It’s with the help of a computer mainframe - The Frame - that the population tries to change the course of events. The computers’ intelligence has by then surpassed that of humanity. They reach the conclusion that their creators are the biggest problem. The ‘Frame’ intends to save the planet, but wants to exterminate humanity at the same time. It leaves The Alphans no other option then to try and escape a terrible fate. But, at a very high price. The Source is a title that’s open to various interpretations. It’s a reference to water and therefore the water planet where the ones who escaped from Alpha find a new and safe home after a long and enduring journey. The Source also points at the origins of humanity. Where are we coming from? It also hints at the place that The Source takes in the entire Ayreon catalogue. The Source can be considered as the prequel - the source - to the entire epic Ayreon saga.