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Dream Theater - Metropolis Part 2 - Scenes from a Memory CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

4.30 | 3094 ratings

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The Quiet One
Prog Reviewer
2 stars Scenes from a Memorable Story, though from Forgettable Music

Metropolis Part 2: Scenes from a Memory is no doubt a classic Progressive Metal album for it being full of shred solos and leaving you breathless complex-wise, as well as being dark and a bit agressive very ala classic heavy metal, also for it being pretty original and innovating from the metal-side of music this deserves the 'classic' status, however for Prog this has been done before back in the 70's, which many bands managed to pull-off very complex music, however unlike Dream Theater, they managed to give those complex arrangements a direction and thus making it digestable in the least.

Metropolis Part 2 for me is the begining of Dream Theater's downfall; the begining of Petrucci's and Mike's dominance in the music is just something I really can't stand; the end of the well-equilibrated band, in which each member had their moments of brilliance, that is something worthwhile, Images & Words and Falling Into Infinity were some brilliant well-equilibrated albums.

Dream Theaters calls Jordan Rudess to replace Derek Sherinian on the keyboards. Jordan while definitely being capable of playing anything you give to him, his own style is rather tasteless, thus not enjoyable. Have in mind that having fired Derek, that slight eclectisism he gave to the Dream Theater sound has gone with him. Anyways, Jordan isn't heard much on the album to judge correctly, this is due to the already mentioned issue of John Petrucci over-taking the whole album with his nuclear guitar riffs and aimless speed-of-light solos. What we can listen from Jordan it's his either ultra-fast synth solos which burn your speakers completely, or very ballad-esque piano chords, any of the two bore me to death.

As for the rest of the members, you should already know they're also highly proficient at their respective instruments, notable proof is The Dance of Eternity, however aimless complexity is not enjoyable but mainly annoying, and like I mentioned before the only members really standing out are Petrucci and Portnoy. James Labrie on the other hand for this album he has restrained his high-pitched vocals from their previous albums, but for me this just makes it worst, he just doesn't seem as present and powerful nor as distinguished as in the four previous albums(counting the EP). The only musician on board which I haven't talked about yet is John Myung, is that a surprise, really? No, it shouldn't be, he's nowhere to be heard other than in the repeated sections from the original Metropolis song featured in Images & Words, and unfortunately he will barely be heard in future albums. Compositionally: this album lacks of that word sincerely, it's almost impossible to figure out the structure from a song out of here, due to the focus on aimless complexity and endless soloing, something that any of the previous albums notably didn't have.

The fact that Scenes from a Memory is a concept album gives it a(if not, the 'only') bonus fortunately, may sound cheesy for some, but for those who like The Wall for it's dark themes, this may result a very interesting listen, in fact it does for me. However, like most story-driven albums, the plot dominates the album's moods and unfortunately the result of creating some dark moods, there's also the apperance of some un-inspired cheesy ballads: Through her Eyes and ''Through my Words''.

To sintetize, this is an album FULL of guitar solos, some manic keyboard ones, plenty of menacing drum fills, some horrifying sound effects for your understandment of the story, never-ending compositions with James' now undistinguished vocals.

2 stars for the songs. 0.5 bonus for the concept and it being the most original Dream Theater from the Rudess-era as for now. 2.5 stars it is.

The Quiet One | 2/5 |


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