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Dream Theater - Train Of Thought CD (album) cover

TRAIN OF THOUGHT

Dream Theater

 

Progressive Metal

3.57 | 1350 ratings

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Morningrise
2 stars Following their pretentious and arguably most progressive effort, Six Degrees Of Inner Turbulence, Dream Theater's 2003 Train Of Thought shows us the band's most metallic side up to this date. This is the album that divided DT's fanbase in 2 parts. Those who embraced this new agressive sound, and those who despised it and worship the band's classic sound found on previous works like Images And Words.

The album opens with As I am, a song often criticised of being too Metallica-ish. I think it is unfair to dismiss this song just because of this fact. And if you are one of these people who think this is the case, I dare you to listen to Metallica's That Was Just Your Life from 2008's album Death Magnetic and tell me if it doesn't sound similar to DT's 2007 Constant Motion (at least the first minutes). Although the Metallica influence is undeniable, I think As I Am is a great metal tune, with an interesting Petrucci solo and very catchy riffs throughout its seven and a half minutes.

After this, things start to go downhill. This Dying Soul is another chapter in Mike Portnoy's A.A. Suite. I usually tend to hate DT songs where Labrie sings like he's angry with the entire world, and this was no exception. A very dull song, with some unnecesary extra minutes.

Suddenly, endless sacrifice appears and you get that feeling that there's still hope for ToT. Very emotional, nevertheless heavy track. Probably the best song on the album.

Honor Thy Father opens with Portnoy's explosive drums, and there you think this is going to be a wild ride..., but then instantly you realise it is another silly angst-filled DT song with 2 extra condiments to ruin it completely. The first one: Labrie rapping!!my god, I can't tell you how disgusting it is for me to listen to these parts. Terrible. The second one: lame lyrics. Nothing against Portnoy's idea of writing a song against his stepfather, but lines like: "well listen to me you ungrateful fool, here comes a dose of reality, you'll go to your grave a sad and lonely man, the door is closed on your pathetic little plan"...if i didn't know DT wrote such lyrics and I had to guess, I would say My Chemical Romance or some other crappy emo band from nowadays. Definitely the worst song on the album, and one of the worst in the entire DT catalogue.

Vacant is to Train Of Thought what Wait For Sleep was to Images And Words. A short nice ballad with some interesting cello arrangements and a darker feel more according to ToT's general climax. Though not as good as wait for sleep, it is one of the album's highlights.

Stream Of Consciousness comes next. I still don't understand what's the thing with this song and why is it so praised by many. Really, I've tried and tried to see what makes this song so special between people but without success up to this day. I mean, we all know that these guys can play, but I found this instrumental piece lacking of the emotion of previously found on other great DT's instrumentals like Dance of eternity, Erotomania, or even the old Rush-driven Ytse Jam. Nothing unique for me.

Finally we reach to the final song. The supposedly epic In the name of god. I think this song summarises perfectly my general feel towards the album. Good at some moments, mediocre at most parts, inconsistent and with pointless direction.

I hate to give DT such a low mark, but if there's one album of them that really deserves it, this is it. Technical as usual, heavy, yes, but emotionless all the way through. Not a nice place for starters. If you want a heavy DT album mantaining all DT's excellence standards better go and buy Awake.

Morningrise | 2/5 |

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