Dream Theater frontman James LaBrie recently joined Sonic Perspectives for an interview and expressed his feelings about being friends with Mike Portnoy again.

Throughout their music career, Dream Theater went under several lineup changes. LaBrie, Derek Sherinian, and Mike Portnoy continued their career together until Portnoy decided to leave in 2010 due to the tensions between him and LaBrie. So, Portnoy and LaBrie stopped talking, and the band recruited Mike Mangini in place of him.

In November 2021, James LaBrie said he didn’t get in contact with Portnoy since his departure, and this implied there was still tension between them. However, the long-lasting feud seemed to end as Mike Portnoy attended Dream Theater’s show at the Beacon Theatre in NYC on March 4.

In a recent interview with Sonic Perspectives, James LaBrie said his manager informed him that Portnoy would come to see them perform, but it was just two hours before the show. Although he was nervous at first, LaBrie stated that he decided to bring an end to this feud.

Moreover, the musician remembered that Portnoy came to see him after the show, and they had a long talk backstage. The pair then ended up hugging each other and taking lots of selfies. According to LaBrie, the hate they both carried was damaging, and one shouldn’t carry around negativity for such a long time.

During the conversation, James LaBrie said the following:

“What happened was my manager, this is like two hours before the show. So, you know the history of Mike and me. What was sad about that whole duration where Mike and I didn’t see eye to eye is that when Dream Theater started, with ‘Images And Words’ and ‘Awake,’ Mike and I were best friends. Then we started to fall apart for several reasons. It doesn’t matter. The details don’t matter. It’s just that we started to have a problem with one another.

And so about two hours before the New York show, my manager texts me, and he said, ‘Listen, Mike’s going to be there tonight. He wants to come back and see you. He wants to make amends. I don’t mean to do this…’ And I said, ‘Frank, you’re putting this in my lap two hours before I play in front of how many thousands of people in New York. Are you kidding me?’

So, I thought about it. You know what? I went for a walk, believe it or not. I went incognito, and I went for a walk in New York. And I walked the streets, and I started thinking about it, and I said to myself, ‘You know what? Enough is enough. There’s enough hate in this world; there’s enough frickin’ negativity in this world. If Mike wants to come and see me and make amends, then I should be receptive.'”

He then continued:

“I got in touch, and John Petrucci was also there. He said, ‘Mike wants to know if he can come back and say hi to you,’ like I just said. And I said, ‘You know what? Yeah. Let him know. For sure. Tell him to come back and see me after the show.’ And that’s what we did. We chatted. We had a good, long discussion. We made up and gave each other a hug and took a picture together.

When I was out on stage before all that, I just said, ‘Hey, I just wanna let you guys know, Mike Portnoy’s here. Hey, welcome, brother, to the show.’ And that was it. The thing is that you get to a point in life where you can’t carry around that. Don’t carry around hate; don’t carry around negativity. We carried it around far too long, as far as I’m concerned, and it didn’t serve any purpose; it just served frickin’ division. It was very divisive and very damaging.”

Below, you can watch the interview and fan footage of the Dream Theater show that Mike Portnoy attended.