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Dream Theater - Hollow Years CD (album) cover


Dream Theater


Progressive Metal

3.09 | 66 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Prog Reviewer
4 stars You know, for a single, this has a damn fine selection of tracks. At 46 minutes (Japanese version), it's no pushover either. Surprisingly enough, the track Hollow Years is the least interesting thing on the CD. I do have a soft spot for this song, as there was a time when I wasn't used to progressive metal, and Hollow Years was a much gentler introduction to Dream Theater for me. It's a good pop song, but nothing more.

The extras on this 'single' abound. The japanese version contains a shocking 4 extra tracks totalling 35 minutes on top of the single and album version of Hollow Years. For those that haven't heard the 'Falling Into Infinity Demos', these tracks are extremely interesting.

Firstly, there is the original and far superior version of You Not Me, here titled You Or Me. This version has a better chorus that flows with the song, and an extended funky instrumental.

Next up is the 8 minute non-album track, The Way It Used To Be, which is a fun yet peculiar track, with a neat guitar solo. It's easy to see why this song was left off, as it just feels too quirky for the main album.

If you're getting the Japanese version, the next two tracks are a couple of real live treats that you'll be hard pressed to find anywhere else. The first track is a rendition of Burning My Soul in it's original 8 minute glory, with Hell's Kitchen stuck in the centre. It's interesting to note that after the album was released, Dream Theater would continue to play this song the original way, as if the 5 minute version never existed. It's good to see when a band knows the quality of its demos.

Finally, the live version of The Killing Hand here is one of my favourites, as it includes the alternate introduction entitled Another Hand and has the extended ending, adding an extra 5 minutes to the song. Being a once avid Dream Theater fan, I would collect all kinds of bootlegs and I found that The Killing Hand was a track that has evolved over time. Both these live tracks are a real boon for those especially keen on Dream Theater.

With all these great tracks, this is one of my favourite Dream Theater 'singles'. I'd personally recommend the 'Falling Into Infinity Demos' set over this CD, but you can't go wrong with this single. Brilliant for collectors!

baz91 | 4/5 |


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