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Dream Theater - Awake CD (album) cover

AWAKE

Dream Theater

 

Progressive Metal

4.11 | 1491 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Alitare
5 stars Somehow, I cannot escape calling this Dream Theater's final moment...

Most who call upon Dream Theater and their cast, yet ever growing canon, cite either Images and Words, A Change of Seasons, or Scenes From A Memory as their finest moment. I enjoy all of these albums, but strain to see how they measure up to what I consider their "Dark peak". In Awake, you have a more ferocious and aggressive style, later culled in Train of Thought (only with much less originality). Every song here features either something distinctly grabbing and original, or a theme improved upon from Images and Words. 6 O'clock has a great set of keyboard work with knotty structures, while Caught in a Web allows the band growth into more mature and darker territory. Innocence Faded, while mildly bright, still injects a richer tone.

I find no fault in any of the tracks. The three part suite in A Mind Beside Itself is glorious. Erotomania is bleak and fierce, while voices achieves haunting stature I've never found in anything else the band has done, especially when Labrie says "Like a Dream, but sort of silent". Speaking of Labrie, he expands his vocal palette slightly, and definitely showcases a more violent and angry singing form. The Mirror is possibly the most aggressive song, and it barrels powerfully in its well written lines. The lyrics here are top notch, and befitting a prog giant. The themes come across from mental disorders, fear, hypocrisy, and introversion, and wrap well with the similar musical themes.

The final song is Space Dye Vest. It is my favorite on the album, and is definitely the most melancholy. The piano melody is striking, and the writing/performing is consistently astounding. While I feel that Dream theater are watering themselves down in later days, their height of glory was far from contrived. A blackened trip through Dream theater's most well written darkness in Awake. Fantastic

Best Song - Space Dye Vest, or the Suite

Worst Song - Innocence Faded, due to slight inconsistencies, but still great

***** Awakened stars.

Alitare | 5/5 |

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