We must prepare for the day that the world breaks down

The Source is the ninth studio album from Ayreon, it was released on April 28th, 2017, under the Mascot Label Group.

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

The Source marks the return to the science fiction story line of previous Ayreon albums, serving as prequel for 01011001, making it the first one of the chronology as this album explores the origins of the Forever, the alien race from Y which is an important part of the story line. The story starts at the verge of the apocalypse on planet Alpha, follows the Ten, chosen Alphans who will allow the human race to survive, as they escape the planet, travel the stars, and end up on planet Y.

Cast[edit | edit source]

Vocalists[edit | edit source]

(Listed in order of appearance)

Detailed information on all characters can be found on the page Characters from The Source

Musicians[edit | edit source]

  • Arjen Anthony Lucassen – Electric and acoustic guitars, bass guitar, mandolin, synthesizers, Hammond, Solina Strings, all other instruments
  • Ed Warby – Drums

Guest Musicians[edit | edit source]

  • Joost van den Broek (ex-After Forever) – Grand piano and electric piano
  • Mark Kelly (Marillion) – Synthesizer solo on "The Dream Dissolves"
  • Maaike Peterse (Kingfisher Sky) – Cello
  • Paul Gilbert (Mr. Big, Racer X) – Guitar solo on "Star of Sirrah"
  • Guthrie Govan (The Aristocrats, ex-Asia) – Guitar solo on "Planet Y Is Alive!"
  • Marcel Coenen (Sun Caged) – Guitar solo on "The Dream Dissolves"
  • Ben Mathot – Violin
  • Jeroen Goossens (ex-Pater Moeskroen) – Wind instruments

Track list[edit | edit source]

The album is divided in four "chronicles", with each one of these chapters having an introduction by The Historian in order to gave more context of the history.

CD 1[edit | edit source]

Chronicle 1: The 'Frame[edit | edit source]

Location: Andromeda System: Planet Alpha

A brooding atmosphere of unease has been spreading over Alpha, a miasma of anxiety and fear that is almost palpable. And it's no wonder. These are critical times for the Alphan race. Our planet faces seemingly insurmountable ecological and political problems, and we are poised on the brink of extinction. Despite the Opposition Leader's fierce objections, the President has given the computer mainframe known as "The 'Frame" free reign to solve the worldwide crisis, whatever the cost. But computer intelligence has now far exceeded Alphan intellectual capacity and control. The 'Frame has assumed complete control, and has shut down nearly all vital computer-regulated systems. With all manual overrides disabled, it's been impossible for us to put the systems back online.

It looks as if the cold, rational intellect of the 'Frame has reached the logical conclusion that the only way to salvage planet Alpha is to eliminate the cause of all the problems: us.

The Historian


Chronicle 2: The Aligning of the Ten[edit | edit source]

Location: Planet Alpha: The Great Hall

Myself, nine other influential Alphans, and the loyal android TH-1 are determined to salvage the situation. We gathered in the Great Hall to discuss ways to ensure the survival of the Alphan race. After much deliberation, it was clear that there was only one viable option: a carefully selected group of us must leave Alpha to repopulate a new planet. The Astronomer has located what looks like a hospitable planet near the star of Sirrah. It looks like it could sustain Alphan life, according to the Biologist, as it has water and other essential elements. The Captain's ship Starblade is capable of making the journey. Now all we need to do is figure out how to make it to the ship alive through the utter chaos and panic that has erupted in the streets. And then there's the 'Frame—will it even allow us to leave?

The Historian


CD 2[edit | edit source]

Chronicle 3: The Transmigration[edit | edit source]

Location: The starship: Starblade

The long journey to our new planet—and our new life—has begun. Unfortunately it hasn't been entirely smooth sailing so far. Of course, when we were safely away from Planet Alpha we felt a certain relief at having escaped with our lives. The immediate danger is over, but now we're facing torment of an entirely different sort: the agonising thought that we were forced to leave our friends and family behind, condemned to certain death on the doomed planet Alpha. If it weren't for the unlimited optimism of the Diplomat and the moral support of the Counselor, I'm not sure we could endure it. But they've inspired us to carry on, reminding us of the fact that this is the only way our race can survive. During the long flight aboard Starblade we are slowly adapting ourselves to the conditions of our new water planet. Before we left Alpha, the Chemist had developed an amazing drug he calls 'Liquid Eternity' (some of us prefer to call it 'The Source'). Not only will this drug enable us to breathe underwater and communicate with each other telepathically, it will increase our life span to a degree we never imagined possible.

The Historian


Chronicle 4: The Rebirth[edit | edit source]

Location: The new water planet: Planet Y

We're on our final approach to our destination, the planet that will be our new home. We've named it Planet Y. Our first sight of this peaceful water planet filled our hearts with hope! But now that we're confronted with the stark reality of having to build an entirely new civilisation, it's dawning on us that our problems are far from over. Our entire infrastructure will need to be underwater because deadly radiation from our new sun Sirrah creates a toxic atmosphere. Through the Source we are able to communicate telepathically, which makes it impossible to hide our concerns from each other. Some of us are afraid that we've taken on too much, and won't be able to successfully adapt to our new planet. Others worry that the predictions of the Prophet may still come to pass, and that we will just perpetuate the same inevitable mistakes. In our darkest moments, we all worry that despite all our efforts, this will be the end of our Alphan race. And although TH-1 has been an indispensable asset through this entire saga, something about him feels a little "off" to me lately. It's probably nothing, but I can't help wondering if there's not more to him than we imagined...

The Historian


"The Theory of Everything"
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