In 1999, following a potentially fatal liver infection, guitarist and Nektar front man Roye Albrighton was given only weeks to live. At the last minute he is given the precious gift of life when a suitable liver donor is found. The situation was touch and go for a while, but thanks to the expertise of medical staff he pulls through. Determined to live life to the full, Roye Albrighton resurrects the band that made him a household name in Germany and America. That band is Nektar and a new album; “The Prodigal Son” is released by Bellaphon records. So opened a new chapter for Albrighton and also for the Nektar legacy - a chapter that led to the triumphant reformation of this legendary band.
In 2000, following his health scare, Bellaphon records approached Albrighton to record a new Nektar album. Enlisting the services of Taff Freeman and drummer Ray Hardwick, “The Prodigal Son” (Bellaphon 9729520) was recorded in a matter of weeks. A worthy successor to the previous Nektar catalogue, TPS has received five star reviews in German and American magazines and heralds a new dawn for Nektar.
2002 saw the remastering of the Nektar classic album “Remember the Future” and the release of the entire London Roundhouse Concert from 1973 with previously unreleased bonus material, and amazingly, a full reunion of Albrighton, Freeman, Moore and Howden, along with Mick Brockett’s light show for a concert at the annual NearFest event at The Patriot’s Theater, Trenton, New Jersey on June 29th with guest musician Larry Fast, and a further triumphant live show at The Town Hall in New York City in October 2002 and two US shows in late May and early June 2003. This was followed in July 2003 by the first Nektar concert in London since 1976 and two German concerts (at the Herzberg Festival and at The Centralstation in Darmstadt). These European concerts were unqualified successes.
In October 2003 Nektar negotiated full rights for their back catalogue outside of Germany and have begun a full remastering campaign on their entire catalogue. April 2004 saw the release of the classic albums “Journey to the Centre of the Eye”, “A Tab in the Ocean”, and “Recycled” (all with previously unreleased bonus material). Also released that month was a special remixed CD Boxed set of the bands entire concert at The Academy of Music in New York City recorded in August 1974 on the bands own “Dream Nebula” imprint, part of UK label Eclectic Discs. All these, and future releases include remastering to the highest standard from the original tapes.
In October 2004, original bass player Derek “Mo” Moore announced his intention to leave Nektar. Citing other commitments, unable to tour on a large scale and generously not wishing to impede a revitalised Nektar, Mo stepped aside to welcome fellow Rickenbacker user Randy Dembo. A fan of Nektar since the 70’s, Randy has proved a worthy successor to Mo Moore. 2004 saw an extensive European tour including concerts in Germany, Switzerland, Belgium and the Netherlands - equally importantly it saw the release of a superb new studio album from the band, the magnificent “Evolution”. With stand out tracks such as “Camouflage to White”, “Phased by the Storm”, “Always” and “Child of Mine”, the album is regarded as a true return to form by critics in both Europe and the USA.
An American tour in September 2004 saw Taff Freeman depart the band for personal reasons with his successor, Hammond virtuoso Tom Hughes, instantly earning a place in the hearts of the Nektar faithful. With continued concert dates, along with the remastering of the remainder of the Nektar back catalogue on CD, this legendary band has become once more a proud force to be reckoned with in the world of Progressive rock music.
2005 saw management changes for NEKTAR and a shift towards the band taking greater control of its output - product and careers. Entering into uncharted territory the band toured Brazil to incredible audiences and critical acclaim. A DVD of the event entitled Concerto being planed for early 2007 release from the Niteroi concert.
They took to the stage headlining the superb BajaProg festival in Mexicali in March 2006.
Nektar wanted to embark on major global touring in 2006 as well as make significent product releases, but due to circumstances beyond the bands control (it was entirely in the hands of their then management) they nearly went under finanially. The loyalty of the fans was realised in late 2007 when Nektar truly took over their own management, procured their own website, entirely under their control and went on tour (22 nights) of Germany. Joining Roye & Ron was Peter Pichl on 5 string bass and Klaus Henatsch on keys, these two new members from the Rock city of Hannover, Germany, seemed to gel from the outset and now Nektar looks set to make its mark once again.
Remember the Future