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Dream Theater - Metropolis Part 2: Scenes From A Memory CD (album) cover

METROPOLIS PART 2: SCENES FROM A MEMORY

Dream Theater

 

Progressive Metal

4.28 | 2190 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

CCVP
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Scenes from a Memory: after the traumatizing Falling Into Infinity, Dream Theater rids itself from the 90's sounding and release a terrific comeback that sets the pace for the new age of the band

Let me start off saying that this was the album that finally consolidated my love for Dream Theater, the love for this ever changing and innovative progressive metal band that i will probably only have for them. This was THE album that made my jaw drop for the third time and from the first time i listened it until right now, since i am listening it while i am writing this very review, and also was the fourth Dream Theater album i ever heard (being the first Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence, which made me love the band and made my jaw drop for the first time with the 42 minute epic, the second Falling Into Infinity, which is the weakest Dream Theater album in my opinion, and the third was Octavarium, that made my jaw drop for the second time with the 25 minute epic).

This album is also one big turn of the tide for Dream Theater. It was the debut of Jordan Rudess as a member of the band (they wanted Jordan on the band since Kevin Moore left, but he was too busy with the Dixie Dregs in 1994 and other projects of his own after that)and, because of that, it is the biggest change of musical direction so far, inaugurating the modern Dream Theater sound that has even more progressive influences than before and is more progressive, besides being more metal also. This album also finally detaches Dream Theater from the 90's music but still don't have the new millennium sound, meaning that this album is timeless, since its music don't relate to any specific decade, like all true masterpieces. That detachment may have been caused by the excess of material they had at the time, mainly from the Falling Into Infinity demos, so they could choose what to use, how to use and the way to use and develop the material they had (the most important piece of music for this album was the unreleased Metropolis pt 2 epic, recorded on the Falling Into Infinity demos and which later became this album).

Other interesting feature of this album is that it is a concept album which tells a very interesting story. How this concept develops is also very good: since the story is on psychological time (that means that the story don't follows the time line straightly, going to past and present all the time inside the mind of the protagonist), it has awesome turns, being very fun to discover everything that happened accurately.

Another interesting feature of this album is that it starts a unofficial Dream Theater trilogy, when the end of an album is the beginning of another: This album's end is the beginning of Glass Prison and the end of Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence is the beginning of As I Am.

I think that the final proof of this album's quality is the highly controversial rating of the reviewers and honorary collaborators of this site: every quintessential album of progressive rock on this site (like Dark Side of the Moon, for example) gets a lot of bad or middle grade reviews from those guys and this album is not different from the rest of them.

About the songs, musicianship and other features, there are some things i would like to state:

Well, those five guys are all excellent musicians and this album shows that quite well. Both the composition and the playing are terrific in this album, showing most of the different faces of Dream Theater: the poppish, the metal, the proggy, the prog metal, as well as the feeling DT and technical DT. So, Scenes From a Memory shows us basically most of Dream Theater's faces.

One great thing of this album is that Jordan Rudess still not played most of the time in unison with John Petrucci and John Myung like on more recent albums like Train on Though, Octavarium or Systematic Chaos, what increases significantly the quality of the songs played. Also, most of the album is sung in James LaBrie best vocal range, what stops him from singing out of tune live, when the auto-tune is not turned on.

The highlights here stay with the whole album, since it has to be listened as a whole to be understood, and also the music deserves to be listened from beginning to end because of its quality, being the only drawback the song Through Her Eyes, that becomes pale when compared to the rest of the album.

Grade and final Thoughts:

Well, this one here is by far my favorite Dream Theater album, i just had to write something to mark the 630th review of this terrific album myself. So, what better opportunity to write a great review to a great album of my favorite band?

Also, the masterpiece sign fits well for this great and highly influential album. The influence of this album is already being evident in albums like Astral Entrance from Pagan's Mind (a band HEAVILY influenced by Dream Theater), released only three years after Scenes From a Memory.

Keep us rocking Dream Theater!

CCVP | 5/5 |

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