Dream Theater – Dream Theater

dream theater - dream theaterProg metal masters Dream Theater are back with with their twelfth studio album – the imaginatively titled “Dream Theater”.  Their last album, “A dramatic turn of events” was their first since the departure of founder member Mike Portnoy, but the album was written before his replacement on drums, Mike Mangini, joined, so this album is the first to be written by the full current lineup.

Brief comments on a few of the tracks…

The album kicks off with ‘False awakening’.  The instrumental opening sounds like it belongs in a movie soundtrack and is a superb start to the album.

‘Enemy inside’ is a much harder heavier track with the guitars really dominating the sound

‘The bigger picture’ is more of a ballad, with a long soft gentle vocal section before the power of the song is ramped up

‘Illumination theory’ is the final track on the album.  In the days of vinyl this would take up an entire side of the LP with it’s epic 22 minute running time.  It’s not just the length of the track that’s epic though – this track really is an epic one.  It breaks down into several subsections with the sound changing throughout the track.  You’ve got everything from prog rock complete with vocals, atmospheric instrumental music, classical music with beautiful string sections, prog metal with vocals, and more.  There are changes of pace, of power and of intensity – this one song is like an entire album rolled into one single track.

When Mike Portnoy left, some speculated that Dream Theater would struggle without him, but as this album and “A dramatic turn of events” show, nothing could be further from the truth – rather than declining, Dream Theater are going from strength to strength.  An excellent album.

Rating: 9.5/10

‘Dream Theater’ will be released on 23rd September 2013

Track Listing:

1. False Awakening suite
i. Sleep Paralysis
ii. Night Terrors
iii. Lucid Dream
2. Enemy Inside
3. The Looking Glass
4. Enigma Machine
5. The Bigger Picture
6. Behind the Veil
7. Surrender to Reason
8. Along For the Ride
9. Illumination Theory
i. Paradoxe de la Lumière Noire
ii. Live, Die, Kill
iii. The Embracing Circle
iv. The Pursuit of Truth
v. Surrender, Trust & Passion

Tickets are on sale now for DREAM THEATER’s ‘An Evening With Dream Theater’ U.K. tour in February:

DATE                CITY                                VENUE
13/2                Manchester, UK                      O2 Apollo
14/2                London, UK                             Wembley Arena
15/2                Wolverhampton, UK                  Wolverhampton Civic Hall

About Ant May

I spend half my life at gigs or festivals and the other half writing the reviews and editing photos, and somehow find time for a full time job too. Who needs sleep - I've got coffee.