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Dream Theater - Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

4.13 | 1845 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Prog Reviewer
3 stars Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence came three years after the magnum opus Scenes From a Memory, so it had a lot to live up to. The band, chiefly Mike Portnoy, began the somewhat irritating trend of assigning the same number of tracks as the number of studio album. For example, this is the sixth studio album, it has six in the title, and there are six songs. The band decided to hit hard, releasing a double CD, one with individual songs and one with one song divided into movements.

"The Glass Prison" is opens the album with extreme heaviness. I love this track, but I'm a metalhead so I can understand more classical-mided people to be turned off by the bludgeon. This song contains the first three parts of Portnoy's Alcoholics Anonymous suite. This is a riff monster; the band is paying obvious homage to Metallica (they later covered the seminal Master of Puppets). One of my favorite DT metal numbers, though the distorted vox at the first part wear on me after a while.

"Blind Faith" eases up on the volume, and DT plays its first song dealing with religion (the next album's "In the Name of God" is the second, superior song). The solo section is impressive, but it smacks of reptition of the band's old tricks. Good lyrics from LaBrie, who doesn't write a whole lot for the band.

"Misunderstood" is where things really mellow and this is a fairly enjoyable track, though it lasts too long.

"The Great Debate" is DT's only political song so far. The song deals with the debate over the ethics of stem cell research. It opens with audio clips of politicans arguing over the pros and cons of stem cell research. Instrumentally, this is strong like every DT song. However, the lyrics are infuriating. The band refuses to take a side on the issue. LaBrie sings about how stem cell research could cure the uncureable diseases, then the chorus asks "Are you justified in taking life to save life?" Why bother? I guess they didn't choose a side in order not to anger fans, but if that's the case they shouldn't have made the song if they cared what people thought about them.

The title track encompasses all of CD 2. It is DT's longest epic to date. Rudess' compostion and his arrangement for orchestrea and choir is one of the highlights of DT's career. He would later be at least partly responsible for the positive aspects of the Octavarium album and the amazing Score live album. The Overture is stunning. About to Crash is a great mid tempo piece. War Inside My Head and The Test That Stumped Them All are heavy with Petrucci and Portnoy pounding ahead. Goodnight Kiss has great vox and a beautiful solo from Petrucci. Solitary Shell is light and poppy, though not in the horrible DT way, it's actually quite good. The reprise, Losing Time, and finale end the song fantastically.

6 Degrees is a strong album, though it has its weak moments. The Great Debate is lyrically twisted, while Misunderstood and Blind Faith don't have lasting appeal. I'll give it 3 stars, though it's almost a four.

1800iareyay | 3/5 |


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