August 31, 2013 by  
Filed under Ayreon news, News

UPDATE: You can order the album in our web shop.


Hey Ayreonauts! Most of the Ayreon-related internet action is now to be found on Arjen’s Facebook page, but below you’ll find the basic info on the new Ayreon album “The Theory of Everything.”

Ayreon - The Theory of Everything

Cover for Ayreon CD – The Theory of Everything

  • The Theory of Everything features a stellar cast of guests, with members past and present of Nightwish, Lacuna Coil, Kamelot, Genesis, Yes, ELP, Asia, Toehider, Grand Magus, and Ancient Bards (see below)
  • It is a double album
  • It begins a completely new story line for the Ayreon universe
  • It comprises four 20-plus minute “epics” divided into 42 separate tracks
  • It’s a true Rock Opera with a dramatic, real-world story
  • It is available in 4 editions, including an exclusive 5-disc limited edition, as well as 2LP vinyl
  • The DVD for the special and limited editions features two and a half hours of behind the scenes content
  • Release date 28 October, 2013
  • Signed copies are available in Arjen’s webshop

Arjen ran a series of “guess the musician” contests via Facebook. You can see all of the videos on his Youtube channel.



(in order of appearance)
JB (Grand Magus) as The Teacher
Sara Squadrani (Ancient Bards) as The Girl
Michael Mills (Toehider) as The Father
Cristina Scabbia (Lacuna Coil) as The Mother
Tommy Karevik (Kamelot, Seventh Wonder) as The Prodigy
Marco Hietala (Nightwish, Tarot) as The Rival
John Wetton (Asia, King Crimson) as The Psychiatrist


Ed Warby (Hail of Bullets, Gorefest) – drums
Rick Wakeman (Yes) – keyboards
Keith Emerson (Emerson Lake and Palmer) – keyboards
Jordan Rudess (Dream Theater) – keyboards
Steve Hackett (Genesis) – lead guitar
Troy Donockley (Nightwish) – Whistles, Uilleann pipes
Ben Mathot (Dis) –violin
Maaike Peterse (Kingfisher Sky) – cello
Jeroen Goossens (Flairck) – flute , bass flute, piccolo, bamboo flute and contrabass flute
Siddharta Barnhoorn – orchestrations
Michael Mills (Toehider) – Irish Bouzouki
Wilmer Waarbroek – backing vocals
Arjen Anthony Lucassen – electric and acoustic guitars, bass guitar, mandolin, analog synthesizers,
Hammond, Solina Strings

Track Listing

1 Prologue: The Blackboard
2 The Theory of Everything part 1
3 Patterns
4 The Prodigy’s World
5 The Teacher’s Discovery
6 Love and Envy
7 Progressive Waves
8 The Gift
9 The Eleventh Dimension
10 Inertia
11 The Theory of Everything part 2

12 The Consultation
13 Diagnosis
14 The Argument 1
15The Rival’s Dilemma
16 Surface Tension
17A Reason To Live
18 Potential
19 Quantum Chaos
20 Dark Medicine
21 Alive!
22 The Prediction

1 Fluctuations
2 Transformation
3 Collision
4 Side Effects
5 Frequency Modulation
6 Magnetism
7 Quid Pro Quo
8 String Theory
9 Fortune?

10 Mirror Of Dreams
11 The Lighthouse
12 The Argument 2
13 The Parting
14 The Visitation
15 The Breakthrough
16 The Note
17 The Uncertainty Principle
18 Dark Energy
19 The Theory of Everything part 3
20 The Blackboard (reprise)

DVD content

(special and limited editions only)

  1. Feature: The Making of The Theory of Everything (47:49)
  2. Full length interviews with Arjen, Cristina Scabbia, Tommy Karevik, JB, Sara Squadrani, Marco Hietala, Mike Mills, and Ed Warby (Total time 1:31:19)
  3. Time lapse clips of recording sessions (total time 12:56)

The artwork for the album cover (top of page) was painted by Belgian artist Jef Bertels, who has painted all of the Ayreon covers since Into the Electric Castle. Additional artwork for the album booklet is by Christophe Dessaigne, who also designed the Star One “Victims of the Modern Age” and Guilt Machine “On this Perfect Day.”

Arjen Lucassen releases new Ayreon album, THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING

Arjen Lucassen releases new Ayreon: THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING



334 Responses to “Ayreon – THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING”
  1. Fenixxero says:

    4 Long tracks!? That’s crazy awesome!
    Long have I searched for songs beyond the ten minute mark, and now this talk of 4 over that time. Simply amazing!
    And the release day is so close yet so far.
    What source of inspiration has been taken into account for ‘The Theory of Everything’?

    • Arjen says:

      Thanks, glad you like it! Yeah, they are subdivided into various segments, but basically it’s 4 long 20+ minute tracks.

      Inspiration lyrically? I’d say movies like A Beautiful Mind and Rain Man. Musically I wanted to make a very transparent album like Electric Castle was. It’s less heavy and more instrumental than 01011001.

      • Tomek says:

        That’s so really epic. Literally – 4 epics. Being a big fan of Yes’ “Tales from Topographic Oceans” I can tell you, I couldn’t ask for more! A bold move, but I’m sure these will all be awesome tracks, as in my opinion long songs have always been your best, from The Final Experiment to 01011001. I’ll be more than happy to buy it!

      • AlienBanker says:

        Those movies are great choice of inspiration. I am certain that apart from evidently amazing music the plot is going to be incredible too. At least for me, who was always fascinated by the prodigal stories, whether real like Nikola Tesla or fictional like Sherlock Holmes. And I’m also hugely interested in mental illnesses. If I only had a talent to create an album, the storyline would be set around similar entities. All in all, thank you for doing perfect job I’m incapable of 🙂
        It’s presumable that this album is going to be my all-ayreons and possibly all-aeons favourite.

      • Ruud Timmermans says:

        Hoi Arjen,

        Dit klinkt goed, maar ik heb nog en vraag i.v.m. met je antwoord op bovenstaande vraag van iemand anders.

        Die 4 nummers (20+ minuten) moet ik dat zien als zeg maar de Acts op bijvoorbeeld The Final Experiment dat je op de cd speler de losse segmenten / tracks kon kiezen terwijl die tracks samen wel 1 geheel vormden per act ?

        Dat zou wel super zijn, als het echt alleen 4 lange tracks zouden zijn doet het me denken aan Deep Purple’s Orchestra for group and friends. Er goed maar ik zat zelf altijd te spoelen met mijn cd speler om weer bij een leuk stuk te komen.

        Ik zal het nieuwe album in zijn geheel beluisteren en als de losse segementen te kiezen zijn zal ik wel al snel favoriete stukken hebben die ik dan beluister.

        Keep up the good work.



        • Arjen says:

          Zo kan je het zien, Ruud! Alle nummers binnen een ‘Phase’ zitten aan elkaar vast, maar je kan er naar toe skippen op je CD speler.

  2. Paul Everett says:

    4 long tracks – perfect!
    Making of DVD – Perfect!
    Amazing cast playing on the album as well.
    Hope we can order it soon!

  3. Marcin says:

    Wow, sounds amazing. Samples also, especially those with Mills, JB and Marco. And your keyboarders are so big musicians.. It will be great album. Did you reach 100 minutes long for whole thing? Hope you did 🙂 I like the roles you give to vocalists. I thing it was great choice..

    Thank you for the october music adventure 😉

  4. Ondra says:

    Hi Arjen,
    hope you elbow feels better now. Just wanted to drop by and tell you that you are so immensely cruel! With each snippet of the new album published on your Youtube channel I’m more anxious and nervous. This is against Geneva Conventions, man! I can’t wait for it to be released!
    Wish you successful surgery and quick recovery! Also huge thank yous’ for the colourful thread of your music in the fabric of my life…
    Best wishes from the Czech republic!

    • Arjen says:

      Thanks for your concern, Ondra. I’m getting used to the elbow, but it’s not good yet…

      Haha, yes… I love the teasing! I’ve got a mean streak I guess 🙂 Hope you’ll enjoy the end result!

  5. Aleksi says:

    Wow! This sounds too good to be true. It’s great that you got Marco Hietala on the album as well!

    Can’t wait to get my hands on this album 🙂

  6. Mark says:

    At last! Great news indeed! I am stoked to hear this new album, Arjen!

  7. Harrie says:

    Thanks for this awsome news: just 4 tracks on 2 cd’s makes me very curious of how the final result will be.
    The participation of all those great musicians makes that i’m looking forward to the release of the album. And finally: the 29th of october is my birthday, so it will be an amazing present for me.

    Keep up the good work.

  8. Dan says:

    Sounds good! And also, the album after this will be 153 thirty second songs! Good to see John Wetton on there (I remember mentioning him before. Intersting to see Steve Hackett guesting on some lead. It would be interesting some day to have Ed Wynne of Ozric tentacles guest on lead some day, he always plays some crazy eastern style guitar. Any thoughts on bonus tracks? coversongs? Wow, October is soon and the producer just called and said he wants a complete re-write and more cowbell

    • Arjen says:

      Oh yeah, I love the Ozrics. No bonus tracks or covers (or cowbell) this time, there is already so much music! But there will be instrumentals versions of the tracks and a very cool behind the scenes DVD.

  9. Joaquín says:

    Hi Arjen, this is going to be absoluty fantastic, I’ve no words, the teaser smade me so excited about that album than I don’t know how I’m going to stand the wait.

    My first daugther is going to born at the end of september, Beginnig of October, I cant imagine best present to her than a new Ayreon album, and for his father, so I have decided to buy two limited edition copies one for me and another one for her.

    So thank you Arjen for another masterpiece

  10. Grey says:

    Sin duda , otra OBRA DE ARTE que esta muy cerca, cada dia mas cerca 🙂

  11. Foreverofthestars says:

    Hello Mr.L! 🙂

    I am very happy about this upcoming album! I’ m sure it will be killer like the others! And to my big liking, I sensed some Guilt Machine-like atmosphere! All I have to say I’ m quite impressed by the snippets of the upcoming songs! I also sense a Rick Wakeman-ish vibe here and there, which makes me even happier! We will have a big party on Planet Y when it will be released! You are cordially invited, and if possible, please give us a live concert on our planet! 😉

    Best regards and REMEMBER FOREVER!

    • Arjen says:

      Oh yes, I think you are right concerning the Guilt Machine and Rick Wakeman influences indeed. Have fun on Planet Y, I’ll join you later!

  12. Peter says:

    I am still wondering who the cover artist might be. 🙂

  13. EPIC!
    Can hardly wait to hear the whole masterpiece!

  14. Daniel says:

    Sounds like it will be arranged similar to tales from topographic oceans, as far as song lengths go. This is amazing news!! I was planning on asking for this for chirstmas but I don’t think I will be able to hold out, haha awesome line up and whatever the concept is I am sure it will be incredible!!

  15. Mattyo5150 says:

    This should be epic no matter what,I have complete faith in you Arjen. BTW was the pic accompanying this article taken in Amsterdam?

  16. Erik says:

    Hey Arjen,

    Cant wait for the release!!
    But there is a burning question…….will there be are lease party?
    And more imported….will i be invited?? 😉

    Greetings Erik

    • Arjen says:

      Sorry Erik, no release party… There are no Dutch singers this time and it would be too hard to get it organized… But if we would have one, you would be invited 🙂

  17. Erik says:

    i ment release party 😉

  18. Sandra from Edinburgh says:

    Hi Arjen

    Most days I listen to one of your albums. I am a headphone listener and your production techniques really shine listening that way. Love your blend of styles, in particular your use of guitar textures and rhythms and analogue synths. I am so excited about your new album, it will be one of the highlights of the year for me. Thanks for giving me so much enjoyment over the past couple of years since I “discovered” your music. More power to your elbow – an british saying – which seems particularly apt now!

    • Arjen says:

      Glad you listen to my music on headphones, Sandra. I’m a total headphone freak myself! Thanks for the power… and let me know how the experience was 🙂

  19. Paul Everett says:

    The new cover looks amazing. Hope you include a print with a bundle deal. So a double CD, DVD and instrumental tracks sounds like 4 CD and a DVD set to me. That would look great in an Ear-book style package with larger artwork! Agree with the comments of a feel of Guilt Machine to the samples so far. Looking forward to hearing the album. Hope we can pre-order it soon. Better book some time off work to enjoy your new masterpiece. Take care,

    • Arjen says:

      Yes Paul, we hope to include a poster! Glad you like it. Yes, 4 CD and one DVD and Ear-book. And yeah… you’ll definitely need time off to listen to this monster 🙂

  20. Fabrizio says:

    Dalla recensione e da questi commenti, sembra un lavoro fantastico! Non vedo l’ora che esce, di Lucassen, non mi manca un CD. Lo acquisterò di sicuro e sceglierò la versione limitata più completa con vinile. Forza Arjen!!!!!

    • Arjen says:

      I can’t read everything you wrote there, Fabrizio… but I like ‘fantastico’ and ‘acquisterò’, he he 🙂 Grazie!

  21. Damián says:

    The album’s name, the art, the vocalists, the instrumentalists etc. all is amazing. Im sure that will be great, I can’t doubt it, every Ayreon album is better than the previous, and “The Theory of Everything” with Emerson, Wakeman, Rudes etc…. WOW!! I haven’t words to describe it and imagine how it will sound.
    When I Buy it I will be listened it every time while running, writting or just in my room closing my eyes traveling to your world.

    Thanks for your music.
    (sorry for my english)

  22. Tomek says:

    Hi there! I’m not going to bore you with expressing my excitement, as I had already done that before. 😉 But I have a question. You have written that this album “begins a completely new story line for the Ayreon universe”. Does it mean that it’s a “Part One” of something bigger, or is it just a stand-alone story with no continuation planned?

    Love the artwork & track titles by the way!

    • Arjen says:

      I don’t know yet, Tomek! I didn’t plan the original ‘Forever’ story to be an ongoing story either. But this story definitely has the potential to become something bigger. Will be continued 🙂

  23. Kseniya Zavyalova says:

    Beyond myself with excitement here)
    Congratulations to you, Arjen – the end of October can’t come soon enough!

  24. Damian says:

    How i can get the animated image of the lighthouse ? I would like put it as wallpaper in my cell phone.

  25. fabian says:

    i just realized that the single tracks are gonna have a lenght of about 1-2 minutes…
    greetings from austria 😉

  26. BRIAN says:

    PERFECT TIMING THIS WILL BE MY CHRISTMAS TREAT !!!!, as always the artwork is dammmm amazing

  27. Shilven says:

    I think that I’m getting even more hyped over 2 hours DVD than the actual album… 😀

    • Arjen says:

      Lori will be happy to hear that, she worked on it very hard! And I can already tell you that you won’t be disappointed 🙂

  28. Lori (Arjen's PM) says:

    Just an FYI for anyone reading down this far — we are adding more info here as it becomes confirmed, rather than posting a new article every time something changes. I hope that’s easier for everyone 🙂

  29. Remco says:


    I’m registered to the Newsletter, but i didn’t receive a mail with the info about the upcoming album. Do you know how this is possible?

    I am happy that the new album is coming so soon though 🙂


    • Lori (Arjen's PM) says:

      Hi Remco,

      It’s all my fault! You didn’t get a newsletter because I didn’t send any. 🙂 We have one planned for this week, it will contain all the info so far. We’ll also send one out when it’s time for the preorders to start. I can imagine it was very confusing for you and the other newsletter subscribers, because in the past we’ve depended more on the newsletter than anything else. But there’s so much spam, etc., these days that I feel a lot of resistance to sending newsletters, even though people are signed up for it. Sorry about that!

      • Remco says:

        Hi Lori,

        First of all, thanks for the fast reply and don’t feel bad:)

        I personally do depend on the newsletter because i don’t use facebook (and hardly have any spam).
        In this case i just found the news by accident. Because since i heard there will be a new Ayreon album, i just look on this site once in a while.
        But again, no hard feelings; i will probably preorder asap.

        One more thought, it would be nice if the artwork above wil be available in the store (preferably with smaller text)

        Best Regards,

  30. Ricardo Franco says:

    Dear Mr. Arjen Pro-​​Head
    One more thing you should know,
    here on the other side of the world,
    there are people who appreciate your mind extremely prodigious;
    you’ve been able to touch our souls with your music
    thank the universe for your life,
    I can’t wait for the new album to be released 🙂
    greetings from El Salvador, Central America