The first time I ever heard of Ayreon was back in 2000. I was on vacation in Sicily with my then girlfriend. Since I get restless after five minutes lying in the sun doing nothing I always bring with me magazines and books to read and this noon, I was lying on our very large balcony reading a mag called Bright Eyes Magazine – that later turned into Sweden Rock Magazine – and in there was a pretty big coverage of Ayreon. The article was about Ayreon’s then new Universal Migrator twin releases The Dream Sequencer and Flight Of The Migrator. Now I found the whole project really interesting, both musically and the story the albums were based on. What also caught my eye was that founder, project leader and conductor Arjen Anthony Lucassen (once guitarist in Dutch melodic rockers Vengeance) had managed to recruit no one other than Iron Maiden air raid siren Bruce Dickinson (yes, THE Bruce Dickinson, but without any cow bell (sic!)). I figured that if this project sucked, there’s no way he would participate in it. Still Dickinson or no Dickinson, I found the project so interesting that I just had to check it out. Remember, back then there was no Spotify or Pirate Bay or whatever source people use these days to check out new music. If you wanted to listen before buying, you had to go to a record store and do so. I couldn’t be arsed with doing so so I looked up a second-hand record store, got lucky and found both albums and bought them unheard.