Spock's Beard began in 1992 when brothers Neal (lead vocals) and Al Morse (guitar) teamed up with drummer Nick D'Virgilio. After self-financing their first album, bassist Dave Meros joined, and The Light was recorded in 1994. Consisting of four lengthy songs, this debut album was well received by progressive rock fans, but received little public acclaim. Ryo Okumoto joined in 1995 to play keyboards. In 1996, The Official Bootleg was released, a live performance containing the entire first album plus one song from the upcoming second album. 1996 also saw the band sign with various record labels around the world, in addition to releasing Beware of Darkness, which contains the same style of music, but in shorter pieces (all ten minutes or less, except for the 15-plus-minute last track). Spock's Beard's third studio album, The Kindness of Strangers, was released at the end of 1997; Day for Night followed in 1999 and V was issued a year later. Deciding they had the experience and chops to attempt a concept album, they spent the next few years putting together Snow. The double album revolved around the title character, an albino teenager that could possibly be the messiah. Taking a much more detailed approach to the material, the band had a difficult two years writing the album and was rewarded with a strong promotional push from Metal Blade Records. Following Snow, Neal Morse became a born again Christian and left the band. The remaining members quickly regrouped, however, with D'Virgilio assuming the lead vocal duties and managed to release Feeling Euphoria the following year. 2004 saw the rerelease of their first three albums and in 2005 they delivered both a new studio offering (Ocatane) and Live in 2005: Gluttons for Punishment. ~ David White
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