Saturday, 7 August 2010

Dan's Metal Soapbox: Volume 2

Dream Theater are often accused of being way over the top, unnecessarily complicated musicians regularly trying to out do each other with over complicated soloing (that they sometimes just call their melody lines....). Who doesn't relish a wee bit of healthy competition though? I know where all these people are coming from and in essence they are correct in a lot of cases however; Dream Theater to me are a band that I would not class as metal, rock or even prog metal. They seem to class themselves, fitting nicely into a theatrical metal genre should one ever been conceived. Without a doubt, Dream Theatre set themselves as one of the most versatile bands I have ever heard of. They have one distinctive style, theatrical, and then take that "dreamtheaterness" and add it to any type/style of music that they fancy for that particular album. 

Their most recent album 'Black Clouds And Silver Linings' emits a sound normally akin to having the likes of Slayer and Cradle Of Filth playing in the tour bus on the way to the studio. The guitaring is very screechy and banshee like (very remiscent of Cradle Of Filth...oh, there's the shower of blood soaked studded hats dripping in rage heading straight for my head). Petrucci is a guitarist who makes most of us hate him with envy at the ease, accuracy and speed that he plays with. The drums for one are very heavy if not death metal like at times; it does help that drummer Mike Portnoy is in the drummer Hall of Fame as lets just say he is an epic drummer and is definitely over the top, but sometimes ruins a few things if you ask me. And i am huge fan of them but none the less he is inspiring. Keyboards supplied by Jordan Rudes teamed with vocals by James Labrie are what make no questions that it infact Dream Theater battering your frontal lobes with their signatures styles blaring out in every record. Rudes often sounds as if he is trying to out do Petrucci. If im honest I dont really like what he does live at all because it just becomes pointless and I think it can take away from the music. 

Finally we get to bassist John Myung. Myung is as necessary to Dream Theater as breathing is for life. He is very creative as a bassist and, in my eyes, very clever as he never seems to take anything away from the songs. One gimmik the band has is that each album they have ever produced always leads on to the next album, for instace at the end of the last song 'Finally Free' of the album Metropolis part 2 scenes from a memory the end of the song is that white noise from a tv channel with no tv coming in and the start of the song 'the glass prison' of the new album six degrees of innerturbulence it has the exact same white noise as if the songs where originally 1 incredibly long song!

Musical geniuses they may be but flawed they certainly are; in these flaws their unique style shines through making them the musicians we love.

Dan Colgan

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